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and disgustingly filthy. The houses, with few exceptions, are out of repair, and many are entirely in ruins. The dust-cart is not known here; the rubbish is carried out of town by donkeys, which is rather expensive; to avoid which, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, who are for the most part poor, have recourse to a curious expedient. There are a large number of deserted magazines scattered throughout the town, in these all the rubbish is collected, and as often as one of them is filled, they close it in with a stone wall. I have counted more than a hundred of this description. Sometimes it happens that these walls give way, and then the whole neighbourhood is enveloped in the dust of many generations. Others do not even take the trouble of carrying the rubbish out of their houses, they appropriate one room as a common receptacle, and when that is full they take the next. Soon after our arrival we hired a house for the use of the mission, in which there were two large rooms completely choked in the way mentioned. Pickaxes were required to clear them, and it was a work of many days before it was done. Besides these nuisances, there are the shambles, in the Jewish quarter, and the disgusting tan-yard, which infect the air with a pestiferous odour, and create many maladies. These evils might easily be remedied, if the local government cared more for the town, and if the Mahometans were less fanatic.”—Missionary Labours, &c. pp. 42, 43.
JERUSALEM SHALL BECOME HEAPS.
Jer, ix. 11; Mic. iii. 12.
In seeking a solid foundation for the Protestant church, “they had dug down about forty feet, and had not yet come to rock. They laid bare heap after heap of rubbish and ancient stones. It is a remarkable fact,
which cannot but strike the traveller, that not only on Mount Zion, but in many parts of the city, the modern town is really built on the rubbish of the old. The heaps of ancient Jerusalem are still remaining ; indurated masses of stones and rubbish forty and fifty feet deep in many places. Truly the prophets spoke with a divine accuracy when they said, 'Jerusalem shall become heaps ! And if so, shall not the future restoration foretold by the same lips be equally literal, and full ? "The city shall be builded upon her own heap.” It is quite possible that some of the ancient gates may be literally buried beneath the feet of the inquiring traveller, fulfilling the words of Jeremiah, “Her gates are sunk into the ground.?
“They have since reached the old foundations, after digging fifty feet. It is a striking fact, that the foundations of Jerusalem should be thus hid in the ground, when we contrast it with the case of Samaria, of which it was foretold, “I will discover the foundations thereof.' Thus does God point His finger to one spot and say, 'It shall be thus with thee; and turn to another spot, and say in equal sovereignty, 'It shall be otherwise with thee !-Narrative of a Mission to the Jews, p. 130.
THE JERUSALEM BISHOPRIC.
Psalm cxxii. 6. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem—they shall prosper that love thee.”
In the year 1841 a step of the utmost interest and importance was taken by the Christian Church with reference to Jerusalem. This was nothing less than the appointment of a Protestant Bishop to that city, and the commencement, on Mount Zion, of a Protestant Church. The person selected to fill this high and most 1 Jer. xxx. 18.
2 Lam. ï. 9.
responsible office was a Jew, one of the earthly family of Abraham, and one also of his spiritual children, a member of the true Israel, a believer in Israel's long rejected King. Dr. Alexander was, in every respect, fitted for the arduous work to which he was called. Of the manner in which he commenced it, and of his entrance, after a short period of labour, into an everlasting rest, we have the following brief accounts:
“The Bishop preached his farewell sermon on the 8th November, 1841, in the Episcopal Jews' Chapel, Palestine Place, before an unusually large congregation. He had chosen for his text the following words of Holy Writ: “And now, behold, I go bound in the Spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there : save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying, that bonds and afflictions abide me. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.""
The Bishop's first arrival at Jerusalem is thus described by an eye-witness :
“On the morning of the 20th January, 1842, our little community was much excited by the arrival of a messenger from Jaffa, with the intelligence that the British Consul-General and Bishop Alexander had arrived off that port, and might be expected in Jerusalem on the following day. The Rev. Mr. Nicolayson, the head of the Mission for promoting Christianity amongst the Jews at Jerusalem, immediately started to meet them. The rencontre took place at Ramleh, where they halted to pass the night. On the following day they made their entry into our ancient capital in a procession, which will be remembered by those who saw it to the latest day of their lives. When within five miles of the gate they were joined by the few British and American residents on horseback, headed by Mr. Proconsul Johns, who is architect of the intended church.
On approaching the town the cavalcade was swollen by the junction of the Bey, second in command of the troops, who had been sent with a guard of honour to compliment Colonel Rose on his arrival. Not the least interesting object in the throng was Mrs. Alexander, the partner of the Right Rev. Prelate. A large taterwan, or Oriental litter, had been constructed, which, supported before and behind by stout mules, conveyed Mrs. Alexander and the younger portion of her family over the rocky and precipitous tracks which lead from Jaffa to Jerusalem. The throng passed on, and the scene which ensued at the Bethlehem Gate, by which it entered the town, baffles all description. On the one side were the gray massive battlements of Jerusalem, on the other was the vale that leads to Bethlehem, while the dark line of the mountains of Moab beyond the Dead Sea walled in the prospect. The wild Bedouins, who had been gambolling round the procession at the full speed of their desert horses, contented themselves with firing off their muskets, being now hemmed by the motley throng of citizens, &c.; Mussulmen in their furred pelisses and well folded turbans, and Jews. The party moved on slowly towards the house of Mr. Nicolayson ; and just as the new comers turned their heads to admire the Tower of Hippicus, which dates from the time of Herod the Tetrarch, the guns thundered forth a salute on the occasion of one of the greatest festivals of the Mahometan religion. It was singular that the Protestant bishop thus made his public entry into one of the four holy cities of the Mahometans on such an occasion.
“On the 23d the bishop preached his introductory sermon— Whereas thou hast been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations.””] – See Missionary Labours in Jerusalem, pp. 24–26.
In November, 1845, Bishop Alexander, with his wife
and eldest daughter, commenced a journey to England on important business. It was his last journey on earth, nor was he permitted to complete it.
“ The bishop had greatly enjoyed the Desert, and had, day after day, sung, as they travelled on, suitable hymns, in reference to the wanderings of the Lord's ancient people. The singing sounded peculiarly sweet as they crossed the great desert of Shur. His last act was prayer with his wife and daughter, and he then laid down upon his bed in the tent. His last words were a blessing. Mrs. Alexander then went to sleep, but was awoke by a groan from her husband. She instantly got up, when she saw him sitting up in bed, with his eyes closed. She spoke to him, but received no answer. She touched him, but had no reply, when she gave the alarm. It was death. He had gone off in an instant, and without pain. One groan had been his last.
“It was truly a heart-rending scene. In a tent, in the wild sandy desert, no medical help at hand, to see the widowed wife and fatherless daughter bending over the lowly bed on which were stretched the lifeless remains.”
According to the wish of the bishop, expressed in life, his remains were conveyed back to Jerusalem, there to await the resurrection of the dead. But he is gone to the “ heavenly Jerusalem, which is free, the mother of us all."
DIFFICULTIES OF A MISSIONARY IN JERUSALEM.
“We still cannot find any house, and the rooms which we live in now are wretched beyond description. There are no windows in them, but only holes, which we are obliged to stop up on account of the cold and rain ; but
1 When Mrs. Ewald, the wife of one of the missionaries who accompanied Bishop Alexander to the holy city, was dying, she said, “ It is a blessed thought to die in Jerusalem; but I am going to the heavenly Jerusalem, which is free, the mother of us all.”