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overflowing with faith and love, is ac- affairs with system; it will tend to inspire ceptable to the “high and lofty One." every one with energy; it will fill the But if there be among his professed fol- heart with joy. It will give an unwonted lowers any who present no oblation, how impulse to all religious feeling and action, does the Omniscient view them? They and to the common business of life; for, have no treasury for God; they lay by as you adopt this Divine method, you nothing in store for him; they bring no will feel, more than ever before, that you present for him in their hand, nor lay up are living for God, for the church, for any in their house. In all they possess the benefit of souls, and for a vast there is nothing designed especially for eternity. Your meditations, your prayers, Him, unless connected with some self- your plans, your whole manner of life, interest. They may think, indeed, that will be improved. You will at once bethe church to which they belong is doing come more like Christ in your regard to much; and they may expect to pass with the great work of evangelising the world; acceptance on that account. But what (and in many important respects the astheology, what logic, is this? The church pect of the world, of time, and eternity, is bountiful; therefore every member is will be changed.) You will aim at higher, bountiful! Do such expect to die with nobler, more enduring, and more glorious the mass !-to be admitted into heaven objects; for you will more readily unwith the mass? Is it not written that derstand the mind of Christ, and more “ every one of us shall give account of justly estimate the superlative excellence himself to God?" And does not the same of his kingdom and glory. authority order that “upon the first day 4. This Divine method, carried out, of the week every one shall lay by him in will furnish abundant supplies.- If one store, as God hath prospered him?" We halfpenny a-week from a million persee also,
sons would furnish one hundred thousand 2. That this Divine method is feasible. pounds, as the contribution of the poor, -In regard to many plans there is doubt what an abundant supply will be furwhether they will operate well in prac. nished when the more able and the rich tice, because it may be difficult to carry shall lay by in store, as God has prothem out. But there is no difficulty in spered them! If every one should adopt regard to this; for only one person is Jacob's vow, what an income would anconcerned in carrying it out. He is not nually flow into the Lord's treasury! For dependent on any one but himself ; none every ten shillings, one shilling ; for need inquire whether the whole church, every hundred pounds, ten pounds ; for or any considerable number, or even any every thousand, a hundred! But we are other one, will do it: it is a personal not to suppose that the more able will be matter. Nor can any one say he is not content to give no larger proportion than able; for it is only to “lay by in store, the poor. Where much is forgiven, the as God bath prospered" you. It is the love will be much. Where the Lord besimplest of all methods. Let there be stows bountifully, he expects to reap but a willing mind, and you will do as bountifully. And the pious soul that rethe Gentile churches did in relieving the ceives much from the Lord delights to poor saints at Jerusalem. A willing mind consecrate much to him in return. makes a cheerful giver, and “God loveth 5. This Divine method affords a test of a cheerful giver.'
Christian love. - In some parts of the 3. The Divine method is for the best world a man becomes a Christian at the interest of the Church.--Let every mem- risk of his life. It was generally so, ber try it at once. It will give new views during the first three hundred years after to many on this most practical subject; the Christian era. And thus were veriit will greatly enlarge the mind; it will fied the words of Christ to his disciples: put every one on a desire to arrange his “ Ye shall be hated of all nations for my
DIVINE METHOD OF RAISING CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS.
name's sake.” He added, " He that I but that I have done the same, as to the loveth his life shall lose it; and he that general amount. I do not say that I hateth his life for my sake shall find it.” have loved Christ, or his cause, or the But what is the test of love to Christ, at souls of men, or denied myself and sufthis time, and in this land ? It is not the fered so much, as I might have done. name of Christian. So many are called But I do say that I have, during these Christians, that the name is far from years, devoted a certain proportion, (a being a term of reproach. It requires tenth, at least,) of all that God has given now no self-denial, no sacrifice, no cross, me, to his treasury. And I wish to bear to assume the name. What, then, is a testimony, that the Divine method is test of Christian love? Orthodox doc
good. It impresses upon the Christian a trine? Moral duty or religious forms? sense of personal responsibility; it is Penance or abstinence? Frequent exer- feasible ; it is good to the one who folcises of prayer, preaching, or efforts to lows it; it enables one to do his part in persuade sinners to become converts ? contributing to evangelise the world ; it No: these may exist where there is no is a test of Christian love. I urge every saving faith, no love which would rather one to adopt and pursue this method. die for Christ than forsake him. Here
The single fact, that it is of God, is sufis a test of Christian love,—to hear the ficient to recommend it to every one that command of Christ, “Go ye into all the loves God. Then the fact, that it is called world, and preach the gospel to every for at the present time, to sustain and creature," and to say, “Lord, here am I; carry forward the Missionary enterprise, send me," and to go; or, on ascertaining should recommend it to every one who that one is not qualified to go, yet to be loves Christ and the souls of men. It willing to do as much at home, and deny proposes that something be done ; that himself as much, and suffer as much, as it be done now; that every Christian he that goes. This is Christian love; and should do it, and continue to do it. It this is precisely what is needed at the is no oppressive method, but one of present time. You will, then, as a true equality and proportion; it is no partial yokefellow, work shoulder to shoulder method, but one to be adopted by every with them who toil abroad; pray as they Christian; it is no fitful method, but pray, feel as they feel, and hope as they one to be pursued steadily, as based on hope. It is not, indeed, a test of striving Christian principle; it is no unsuitable unto blood, but it is as surely a test. We method, but one adapted to the exigency admit, indeed, that all this might be done of the times, and adequate to all the dewithout love to Christ. A man might mands of charity; it is no novel inven"give his body to be burned," without tion, but it has stood the test of ages. charity; but this alters not the nature of Nor is it just now discovered, for it is the test. It still stands good for this pur- written in the ancient records. The pose; and by this must Christian love, at author of "the Great Commission" urges this day, and in this land, be tried. it, as appropriate to the present wants
We ask, then, finally, Shall the Divine of the world, as well as of Divine aumethod be adopted and pursued ?-For thority. We expect of our Missionaries one, I answer in the affirmative. I will as much, at least, as this Divine method not preach to others what I will not do requires. And why should not every one myself. I have weighed this matter; and of us do as they do; and bring all our I beg you to allow me to say, without love, and self-denial, and practical energy, being thought ostentatious, that I have to bear upon this heavenly enterprise ? practised this method, substantially, for “Who, then, is willing, this day, to conabout thirty years. I do not say, that secrate his services to the Lord," and to I have literally laid by, on the first day a perishing world? His God be with of the week, as God has prospered me; I him, and make him a blessing to thou
sands of millions! Amen.-(Sermon by Upwards of 50,000' children are placed the Rev. Elisha Yale, D.D., of New York, under instruction in their Schools, and 15 U. S., with slight alterations.)
Printing Establishments are supported.
The Income of the Society, for the year
ending the 31st March, 1846, was £69,976 THE Society employs among the hea- |
168. 10d. Its Expenditure for the same then, at the present tinie, 165 European
period, £74,497 78. Missionaries, and 603 European and Native Assistants.
SIR CULLING EARDLEY SMITH, Treasurer. The number of Stations and Out-stations Rev. A. TIDMAX, Foreign Secretary. supported by the Society in different parts Rey, J. J. FREEMAN, Home Secretary. of the world is 439; connected with which there are 131 Churches.
Blomfield-street, Finsbury, London.
EXTRACTS ON PRAYER.
A CHRISTIAN sustains a personal rela- , which very often have very little of relition to God, has personal wants, sins, and gion in them, must be short; short serobligations, and feels it, therefore, both mons—short prayers-short meditations his duty and his privilege to go and -short devotion-short books—short respeak to God alone. To this he is en- ligion.—Ib. joined by the highest authority: “But thou, when thou prayest," says Christ, Christians oftentimes do not pray in "enter into thy closet, and when thou faith ; and yet this is prescribed, and hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father prescribed, too, as the condition of sucwhich is in secret; and thy Father, which cess, James i. 6. To pray in faith means seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly," a firm persuasion that, through the meMatt. vi. 6. The word "closet," in the diation of Christ, we are authorized to original, signifies chamber, warehouse, or pray; that our prayers are really heard ; even cellar; in short, any secret place; 1 and that, in spiritual blessings, we shall and some suppose our Lord designedly have the very things we ask; and in employed a word of such latitude, that temporal ones, those, or better. Many none might omit prayer under pretence | persons do not care about success through that they had not a proper place to which carelessness; others do not expect it to retire. Place is nothing, disposition through despondency; but faith, after in prayer is everything. “I will,” said looking up for the blessing, actually looks the apostle, " that men pray everywhere, out for it. Effectual prayer is not mere lifting up holy hands." Blessed privi. clamorous importunity, but believing exlege! There is no place in which it is pectation. We must not knock at the suitable for a Christian to be found, in door of mercy, and then walk away in which it is unsuitable for him to pray. despair, but wait in hope. ---Ibid. Rer. J. A. James.
There is very little danger in these days of feeble devotion, engrossing secularity, ayd active zeal, of spending too much time in the closet; the danger lies on the other side. Everything connected with religion, except public meetings,
The life of man should be a life of devotion, he should habitually maintain communion with God; and between his spirit and the Father of his spirit, there should be the closest intimacy, Devotion should be the breeze which should waft him over life's ocean. The Christiau's
communion with God is not limited to, bent, if the arrow of prayer is to reach the hour, termed “the hour of prayer." | the skies. Always remember your great He is frequently in the Spirit-he en- | Advocate, who stands before the throne. deavours continually to maintain a prayer Trust him with your cause, rely on his ful frame of mind. If he be diligent in intercession, and all your petitions shall business, still he is fervent in spirit; if arise acceptable, because of the plea by he partakes of providential favours, in which they are urged; a plea which takes everything he gives thanks; and when its rise from Calvary; a plea which renhe surveys the loveliness of nature, kin- ders irresistible the prayers of the infant dling into ecstacy, he cries out, “ All thy and the aged man; a plea which he who works praise thee, O God, and thy saints is surrounded by the praises of a multishall bless thee." To a spiritual mind tude which no man can number, always surrounding objects will furnish matter listens to; a plea which engages the for prayer and praise; and how often power of Omnipotence, and secures the at the eventide does the Christian enjoy favour of the Most High.—Rev. H. Bevis. a season of refreshing! The tranquillity and soothing lull of a summer's evening
| Prayer, like Jonathan's bow, returns steals over his soul, and “ he who looks
oks not empty; never was faithful prayer through nature up to nature's God,"
lost at sea; no merchant trades with cannot gaze on the giant fragments scat.
such certainty as the praying saint; some tered around him on the calm and un
prayers, indeed, have a longer voyage ruffled surface of the lake, embedded by than others, but then they return with the lasting mountains, in the bosom of
the richer lading at last.-Gurnall. which the beauties of the surrounding scenery are mirrored-he cannot look on the green earth, and the azure sky, or
The longer a believer hath neglected stand so near the ocean as to listen to the
prayer, the harder he finds it to pray; roar of its waters, without a holy feeling
partly through shame for the soul having coming over him. Earth is the sanc
played the truant, knows not how to look tuary where he now prostrates his spirit,
God in the face; and partly through the and worships God. This is the hour of
difficulty of the work, which is doubly
hard to what another finds who walks in prayer.-Rev. T. H. Bevis.
the exercise of his graces. It requires
more time and pains for him to tune his Prayer is not the language of fear and | instrument when all is out of order, than dread, but of love and confidence. It is for another to play the lesson.—Ibid. not a groaning extorted by the pressure of mere misery, like the howling of wild | Great is the power of prayer. The beasts, to which, indeed, the Lord likens conversion of sinners and the edification the petitions of wicked men in their sor- of saints will generally bear proportion rows, Hos. vii. 14; but it is the breathing to the fervent wrestlings of God's people. forth of our wants with an affectionate | It is a certain symptom of revival, when confidence in Him who alone can supply a spirit of prayer is poured out from on them. The more clearly we realize the high ; on the other hand, it is a sure character of God as our reconciled Father test of a declining church, when a spirit in Christ, and our relation to him as his of prayer is restrained. Christ delights children, the more we possess of the ele- to be entreated; when church members ment of the spirit of prayer.—Rev. J. A. have no employment for him, he begins James.
to go away.-Aum.
True prayer is the language of the soul; the bow of the heart must be fully
We may judge of the state of our hearts by the earnestness of our prayers. You
cannot make a rich man beg like a poor these symptoms, be alarmed, for your man ; you cannot make a man that is spiritual health is in danger; apply imfull cry for food like one that is hungry; mediately to the great Physician for a no more will a man who has a good opi- cure.—Ibid. nion of himself, cry for mercy like one who feels that he is poor and needy.Dr. Payson.
Prayer is living with God; and if founded upon right principles of religion,
puts us upon searching the heart, leads The symptoms of spiritual decline are us to the knowledge of our wants and like those which attend the decay of bodily weakness, and fixes us in dependence health. It generally commences with loss upon God. Nothing is more easy, as a of appetite and disrelish for spiritual food, bare duty or lip-service, and nothing prayer, reading the Scriptures and devo- more difficult, than the performance of it tional books. Whenever you perceive ' in truth and sincerity.— Adam.
THE SPIRITUAL CONFLICT.
DR. CHALMER'S ON ROMANS vii, 18-25.
It may be asked, “How could the holy apostle take to himself all the tur- much trembling," but when he is “weak pitude that is here described? Could all then he is strong;" for when he feels this be true of the man whom Chris- his own weakness, "the power of Christ" tianity claimed as the noblest of her is made to "rest upon” him, and thus it champions?" Yes, there was a fight in is that he "glories in infirinity." bis case—and it turned out ultimately a There is a great deal of poetry in the successful one-between the grace of God hymns of Cowper, but not so shrewd an and the corruption of nature. This is a acquaintance with the realities of the mystery of the Christian life which the Christian conflict as in those of another world understandeth not. It is not able author who has little pretensions to poetry, to divine why there should be every day but a profound acquaintance with the more profound humility and more posi- arcana of the Christian life and character. tive holiness; why the Christian should I refer to the Rev. John Newton, one of be more sensible of his worthlessness, whose hymns, as being very appropriate while the worth of his character is build- to the present subject, I beg leave to ing up to eternity. Just in proportion to read: the felt prevalence of the one principle is the felt hatred of the other. A sense of
“Strange and mysterious is my life! poverty is the impulse which sends him
What opposites I feel within," &c. to the fountain of abundance; and his There is another which recognizes the detestation of sin is the best guarantee same truth, and has rather more of the that it “should not have dominion over” poetic beauty : him. Hence, we are not to be perplexed if we read of his “delighting in God in
“ 'Tis a point I long to know, the inward man,” yet mourning over his
Oft it causes anxious thought,
Do I love the Lord or no? “vile body.”
Am I his or am I not ?" &c. &c. He has no confidence in himself, but he rejoices in the Lord Jesus: “I thank London.
E, F. W. God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”