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Even to this distant continent, the OF THE
same society has extended its benefi. MERRIMACK BIBLE SOCIETY. cent efforts ; and numbers of poor
aboriginals are this moment invoking ALTHOUGH the great object of blessings on the heads of those who this Society is indicated by its name, have generously sent them the gos. it is deemed proper to submit to the pel of Christ. public, and especially to our fellow- While the exertions of this SocieChristians and fellow-citizens of the ty have been thus extensive, and vicinity, some general view of our fruitful of good, the influence of its design, and of the grounds on which example has been not less important, we solicit an extended support and or beneficial. Animated by the same patronage.
spirit, and aiming at the same interThe simple object of this institu. esting objects, numerous Bible soci. tion is to disseminate the precious eties have risen up in various parts of word of God-to impart the Holy Europe. The Aame of pious emulaScriptures, in their native purity, to tion bas been wafted across the Atthose numbers, wherever they may lantic. Already our favored country be found, who, from poverty, or oth- sees a number of institutions estab. er circumstances, are destitute of the lished on the same principles, and invaluable treasure. As these dis- commencing their operations under tributions will be gratuitous, the ex- the happiest auspices. Two of these tent and efficiency of our exertions are within the circle of our commonwill depend on the amount of the wealth. funds which we shall be enabled to That it is no part of the object of the collect.
Merrimack Bible Society to interfere In this design we claim not the with the exertions of sisterinstitutions praise of originality. We cheerfully or supersede them ; that, on the conyield precedence to similar institu. trary, we wish to give them the most tions, on either side of the Atlantic; cordial support and aid, is evident and think it an honor to imitate their from one of our fundamental articles, example.
Not six years since, a which declares that “the Society Society was formed in Great Britain will cheerfully correspond and cofor the avowed purpose of publishing operate, as opportunity may offer, the Holy Scriptures in a variety of with all other institutions of a similar languages, and promoting their cir. description, and especially with those culation in all countries, Christian, in this state." Mahometan, and Pagan. A design The considerations which have de. of such pure and enlarged benevo- termined us to form ourselves into a lence was calculated to unite all distinct and separate association, are hearts, to repel every objection, and principally those of superior conventriumph over every obstacle. It re- ience and usefulness. If the local ceived the encouragement which it extent of a Bible society be such as claimed. The Society, during the to permit the members generally to short term of its existence, has made attend the annual meetings, a more exertions which are almost beyond lively interest will be excited and example, and entitle it to immortal cherished, greater numbers, and of honor. Beside printing editions of course, more ample funds, will be the Scriptures in a variety of Euro- collected within a given circle, and pean languages, and liberally distrib- thus the aggregate of good done by a uting copies among the poor and the community will be proportionally inignorant of the respective countries, creased. it has aided, by generous donations, Surely the field of exertion is the translation of the Bible into the wide ; the motives for it, multiplied languages of Oriental India- the no. and various. The object presented is blest design to which the present equally simple, grand, and interestage has given birth-a design which ing. What duty can be more indispromises to pour the saving light of pensable, than that of communicating truth on unknown millions sitting in to our destitute fellow creatures, the darkness, and the shades of death. word of life and salvation ? Where,
in the whole compass of human have supposed, we shall have reason thought, can there be found a nobler
to rejoice. Our bounty may then form of charity!
flow in other channels. For surely, We are aware, indeed, of one it needs not, it must not stagnate. source of objection. Some whom we The fact, that we have little occa. now address, will be scarce able sion for a gratuitous distribution of to conceive, that in the part of the the Scriptures in our sphere,far from country in which we live, there can constituting a reason that we should be any such deficiency of Bibles, as do nothing to promote their circulato call for the extraordinary exertions tion is one of the strongest arguments proposed. In reply, we would re- that we should do much. In what oth. mark, that this deficiency is probably er way, can we so naturally express much greater than is generally real. our gratitude for the mercy which ized. At least, it is our duty to make exalts us above thousands and mil. serious and faithful inquiry on the lions of our fellow-creatures ? Think, subject. If there are to be found, brethren, of the multitudes of poor within our circle, families or indi- Africans in various parts of our coun. viduals, destitute of the Bible, ought try, who groan away months and they not to be 'supplied ? Suppose years in bondage ; the present scene the defect owing to criminal indiffer- embittered with every calamity; the ence and negligence, as much, at future, uncheered by a single ray of least, as to poverty; would not chris- hope. Shall we not hasten to impart tian charity wish to proffer them the to them that gospel which is emi richest of treasures, however neg- nently the friend of the wretched; lected, or undervalued ? Perhaps the the precious and only source of real very compassion manifested in such comfort, in life and in death? Think a gift, might arouse some thought of the Aboriginals scattered in various less creature to serious attention. parts of our continent; most of them Others there are, whose extreme in- immersed in the grossest ignorance digence gives them the strongest and idolatry. The territory which and most unexceptionable claims to they once peacefully possessed, we our attention. In most of our towns, inhabit; and even into the wilderthere are receptacles for the poor : nesses whither they have retired bethese would furnish many a suitable fore us, our vices have pursued them. object of our charity.
But how little have we done to amemany Africans
among us, utter stran. liorate their secular condition ! How gers to the truths taught in scripture. little, to communicate to them the Not a few of them, indeed are alto. sovereign and only antidote against gether unable to read. Others are human guilt and misery! Is it not but partially instructed. Yet who time for more strenuous and efficient can tell, in how many instances the exertions than have yet been made, present of a Bible might stimulate to pour on their benighted souls the both the one and the other, to ac- light of heavenly truth? quire the knowledge necessary to As we proceed, the subject experuse it? In the Eastern portion of pands; and considerations the most our commonwealth, and in many parts affecting and awful press on the con. of New Hampshire and Vermont, templative mind. We invite your rebut recently settled, and thinly pop- flections, brethren, to this simple ulated, it is apprehended there are fact : that in the nineteenth century many families entirely destitute of of the Christian era, more than half the word of life ; many souls perish- the human race are as perfect stranging in utter ignorance and stupidity. ers to the gospel, as though its light And though much has been already had never shone on our globe. Yes ;* done to relieve their miseries, more at this moment, more than ought to be attempted.
MILLIONS of immortal The cases we have thus briefly beings, with souls as guilty, and as specified, ought undoubtedly to en- precious as our own, are utterly iggage our first attention. Should norant, either of the one living and they prove, on a careful examination, true Gon), or of Jesus CHRIST, less numerous or pressing than we as the only SAVIOR! Alas! the
christian world has been buried in a gant and enthusiastic ?
Is it not long sleep; or never could this have time that we should rouse from our been the deplorable case. But we
indolence, and endeavor to discharge have reason to bless God that these the immense debt thus contracted, by guilty slumbers are vanishing. The conveying the same precious gospel cry of distress, issuing from the to the most distant and benighted gloomy abodes of superstition and corners of the earth ? idolatry, and borne on every wind, Such, brethren, is the object prehas at length pierced the ears and sented before you. Such the cause hearts of Christians. Christians be in which you are invited to engage. gin to feel that they owe a debt to And to every reflecting mind, toevery the heathen. Both in Europe and feeling heart, we dare appeal, and America, a missionary spirit has ask : Is it not a cause most imporbeen enkindled, and'the noblest ex- tant, most interesting and sublime ? ertions made to spread the gospel Does it not merit an animated and of salvation. Perhaps among Protes. universal support ? Does it not imtants, more of this kind has been done periously claim the most ardent and in the last 12 or 15 years, than in indefatigable exertions ? whole centuries preceding: The Our wish is, to disseminate the Bithought is animating. Who that bas ble. And surely, if an object can be a heart to feel, would not wish to aid named, against which there cannot in this work of mercy? The attempts possibly be raised a plausible objec. of missionaries, it is obvious, must tion, it is this. Here all hearts may be greatly assisted, and the probabili- unite ; all hands should be open. ty of their success much increased, if, Professors of christianity, however in addition to their oral instructions, different in denomination, or in senthey may impart to the heathen, the timent, may combine and co-operate written word. Indeed translating to spread those Scriptures which the Scriptures into languages in which they all consider as containing the they have been before unknown, and words of eternal life. We have long communicating them in this form, been praying that the gospel may to the various portions of the globe, spread, and the knowledge of the is a species of christian benevolence, Lord fill the earth, Let those praypre-eminent'iu simplicityand efficacy. ers no longer be our reproach : but Thus the fountains of life are opened let us be actively engaged to promote to a perishing world. In this way, their accomplishment. The affluent we trust, the knowledge of the Lord have now an opportunity to convert will soon overspread the earth, as to the most important purposes. the waters cover the channels of the the bounty of Heaven, and in the
noblest sense, to enjoy it, by making It deserves, then, a serious con- it. the medium of substantial and imsideration, whether we are not called mortal good to their fellow-creatures. to extend our exertions, as God shall Those who have tasted that the Lord.' give us ability and opportunity, to is gracious, and are daily living or every part of the globe where they the consolations of the gospel, may are needed, not excepting the most now gratify the first and favorite wish distant climes. The idea is vast ; of their hearts, by inviting others to but let it not be treated as visionary. the heavenly banquet.
And can any By us, it surely cannot be thus treat- believe the Scriptures to be the word ed, without singular insensibility and of God, and the only source of hope ingratitude. The favored island from and salvation to man, and not realize which our ancestors came, was once an obligation to circulate them, if a scene of idolatry and barbarism. possible, to the remotest bounds of But pious missionaries of other lands earth ? sought it out, and gave it the gospel. Christian brethren! while we dai. What would have been our forlorn ly lament the low state of religion in condition at this moment, had not our land ; while multitudes around their souls.glowed with that ardor of us treat the gospel with cold indifferbenevolence which the frigid philo- ence, and trample in contempt on sophy of our day brands as extrava- the pearl of price,let us not despond.
Let us rather redouble our diligence beloved country, the blessing and in the use of all those means by which, protection of the ALMIGHTY. under the divine blessing, the ignor.
In behalf of the Society. ant may be instructed, the thoughtless alarmed, and immortal souls
WILLIAM COOMBS, Pres. saved from death. Let us, at the Attest, W. WART, Rec. Sec's. same time, be comforted with the thought, that the word of life finds its way to other nations ; and that thousands of perishing heathen are
FOREIGN. brought to know and enjoy its everlasting blessings. And let us esteem
TO DEMARARA, it our honor and happiness humbly to promote the triumphs of divine truth Mr. Wray, the missionary to the
The very attempt is negroes in this colony, in a letter pleasant. Every exertion, every sac- dated in February last, writes, that rifice which we sincerely devote to he believes about 150 negroes have this object, carries with it its own become earnestly desirous of saving ample and sublime reward. And who their souls, in consequence of his la. knows but these our humble efforts bors. Twenty-four have been sol. may be crowned with success ? Who emnly baptized by him, and, as far can tell that it may not be our happy as he knows, walk consistently with lot to meet, in the mansions of the their profession. Thirteen more are blest, thousands saved by our instru. candidates for baptism. The num. mentality, from the brink of eternal ber of negroes who enjoy the benefit woe? How delightful, how inspiring of Mr. Wray's instructions is about the thought, that from the banks of 600, Perbaps, he says, a more at. the Merrimack, the joyful sound of tentive congregation was never seen. salvation may soon echo to the coasts They are anxious to understand eve. of Africa, or the more distant regions
Many of them are not of Tartary and China ! The time will only desirous of being saved them. come, when these abodes of ignor. selves, but they willingly teach oth. ance and superstition shall be blest ers what they know. Ten of the with the religion of Jesus, Nay most intelligent of the negroes have more, the whole earth shall bow to each taken eight under their care to his sceptre, and taste his grace. Re- instruct and watch over. Their gions where no christian foot has ev. managers acknowledge that a favor. er trod or ray of gospel mercy shone, able change has been produced on shall be gladdened with the light of their conduct by the instruction they life; shall resound with our Redeem- have received. Some from being in. er's praise. Nor is the period distant. dolent, noisy, and rebellious, are The best supported interpretations stated to have become industrious, of scripture prophecy represent it as quiet, and obedient: they work wil.
The great and awful events lingly, and try by every means in of providence now taking place, do their power to give satisfaction. Seve. not invalidate, but rather strengthen ral gentlemen, who at first were much our belief of its approach. Nor is it prejudiced against the mission, and enthusiastic lo consider the late won. who had prohibited their negroes derful exertions of the friends of Zi. from attending Mr. Wray, are said to on, in other countries and our own, have been so far wrought on by these as the very means by which Heaven appearances, as to retract the prohiintends to usher in the promised mil. bition, and to give permission for lennial glory of the Church. In the their regular attendance. Ch. Ob. mean time, let us humbly hope, that the great and good work in which we now engage, accompanied as it will DEATH OF THE BISHOP OF LONDON be, with our fervent prayers, may happily tend to revive decaying relig- EARLY on Sunday morning, the ion among ourselves, and, in a dark 14th May,1809, died, at the episoopal and portentous day, to secure to our palace at Fulham, in the 79tb year
of his age, much and justly regret- themselves ; and premiums are disted, the Right Rev. Beilby Porteus, tributed to such as behave in a man. Lord Bishop of London. His lordship ner peculiarly exemplary. If their was first consecrated bishop of Ches. conduct prove unexceptionable, re. ter in 1776, and in 1796, was trans- conciliation to their friends is at. lated to the see of London, on the tempted ; or proper situations are death of Dr. Lowth. During the sought for them ; further rewards twenty-three years he filled this im- being bestowed on those who are portant situation, his conduct was found to persevere in good conduct. such as entitled him to the love and The institution is under the direc. veneration of all who knew him. He tion of a committee, who meet every was a man of truly christian modera. Wednesday at the Refuge ; and is tion, and, in the performance of his constantly inspected by visitors and episcopal functions, was ever studi. sub-committees. The committee ous of the peace and unity of the have engaged a chaplain, who atChurch. In private life his conduct tends every Sunday to read prayers and conversation were always amia. and preach, besides attending, durble, pure, and exemplary. His wri. ing the week, for the purpose of retings bear unequivocal testimony to ligious instruction. the anxiety which he felt to advance The committee occasionally afford the interests of religion and morals, temporary relief to persons, until not only in his immediate diocese, they can obtain parochial or other as. but throughout the world. It is ex- sistance ; and they trust, that, as the pected that he will be succeeded by funds of the institution increase, they Dr. Randolph, at present Bishop of may be enabled to put an end to the Bangor.
plea of necessity, urged by the idle and profligate characters that infest
our streets. During the short period REFUGE FOR THE DESTITUTE. the institution has been opened, down
to the end of last year, 235 persons The object of this society is, as we have applied for admission or relief. have already informed our readers, Of these, 100 have been admitted, to provide a place of refuge for per- 59 relieved out of the house, and 76. sons discharged from prisons or the not considered as proper objects ; hulks, unfortunate and deserted fe. 54 of those admitted are now in the males, and others, who, from loss of house. Of those who have left the character, or extreme indigence, can- house some have been restored to not procure an honest maintenance their friends; and others placed in though willing to work. For this situations wherein they are enabled purpose premises are engaged at to gain their livelihood. Cuper's Bridge, Lambeth, compe- An establishment of this kind has tent to the separate accommodation long been wanted, where the peni. of the sexes, and capable of any fur. tent criminal, the deserted female, ther extension. Here every atten. the helpless laborer, and the famish. tion is paid to their morals, and suit. ed stranger, may find employment, able admonition and religious instruc- support, and instruction. For these, tion are afforded them. The males a refuge is at length actually opened; and females are lodged and employ- and when it is considered that it re. ed in apartments which are entirely ceives those to whom no other ref. distinct : the males in splitting fire uge from vice and misery is open, wood and working in the garden ; it and supplies them, not only with suso being intended that other useful tenance, but with moral and religtrades and manufactures shall be ious instruction, we trust that there adopted as the numbers increase : will be a general disposition in the the females, in knitting, spinning, friends of humanity and religion, to making clothes and household linen, give it their support. washing, &c. &c. As an incentive One guinea paid annually consti. to good conduct, a certain portion of tutes a governor, and ten guineas their earnings is set apart, and allow- paid at once, or within one year, a ed them if they depart with credit to governor for life,
Ch. Obr. VOL. II. Nero Series.