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multiplication of appropriate Christian books, afford facilities of conveying divine truth to men, which cannot be employed amongst many of the people of Africa and other regions where letters are not known.
Thus it will appear, that male and female schools, catechists, collegiate institutions, preachers, translators, the writers of good books, may all, under different circumstances, be employed and co-operate in evangelizing the world. In this great harvest there are, as yet, but few labourers; and it is incumbent on the churches, to pray the Lord of the harvest to thrust forth labourers into the harvest; and, with their prayers, to join their efforts to qualify fit agents, to afford them the means of going to distant regions, and assist them when there, till in each country the inhabitants themselves shall be able to teach each other, and not require foreign supplies: when the period which prophecy authorizes us to hope for shall have arrived, when it shall be no longer necessary to say to each other, Know the Lord, for all shall know him from the least even to the greatest.
Of those who desire the enlargement of the Redeemer's kingdom, a much larger proportion should devote themselves to those regions of the world which are, as yet, so ill supplied, both anongst the uncivilized and the cultivated nations of men, and this will require proportionably greater effort amongst the Christians who remain at home; not only in contributing of their property, but also in associating for direct encouragement of the several missions, as circumstances may lead their attention to one or another of them. But this will not be done till Christians see it to be a more serious duty than they do at present--a duty, for the performance or omission of which they must be accountable at the great day of judgment. At present, Christians view it more as matter of taste than of duty. If they take a fancy to assist missions, well; if they do not feel so inclined, they think it also well.
But seeing all mankind are related to each other, not only neighbours, but brethren; may the divine precept, to love our neighbour and our brother, be violated and disre
garded without guilt? Is it an innocent thing to render void the commandments of God? or attend to them, or neglect them, as may suit our taste and fancy? Let us endeavour to view affairs of duty, with that seriousness of mind that we shall see to be right, when we endeavour to realize our appearance before the judgment seat of Christ. The present life is a period of labour and of service, and if our duties be slurred over now in a spirit of carelessness and indifference, instead of being honestly and faithfully performed to our fellow creatures, how can we expect that the Omniscient Judge will say to us-- Well done good and faithful servant? Many persons, who seem very pious people, spend too much on the comforts and elegancies of life, and too little on their Saviour's cause. I am not endeavouring to inculcate any thing extravagant and outrageous; but a plain, palpable, common-sense Christian duty, manifestly deduced from all our Christian principles, and the generally acknowledged truths of our holy religion. I inculcate universal philanthropy, not existing as a merely visionary sentiment, but embodied in real acts of substantial good; and the good to which we now allude, as you Christians know, is above all price, for the redemption of the soul is infinitely precious'; and if a soul die in its iniquity, through the neglect of Christian churches, it, indeed, because of its iniquity, suffers death justly; but still, in another respect, its blood is chargeable on them.
These, my brethren, are awful considerations, arising out of the scriptural doctrine of the kindredship, or consanguinity of mankind, and other collateral truths of divine revelation. A flippant spirit of selfishness, or laboured dissertations about the locality of Christian effort, may deride doctrines which impose duties that bear upon all mankind; but with the Bible in our hands, and sound ratiocination founded on the Bible, I see no ground for derision, when the welfare of mankind is the subject of conference, or of expostulation. Some good people like not the generality of our views, and would confine us at bome entirely; not only to the British dominions, but almost to the very street in which we happen to dwell. Now, if there were Chris
tian men resident in every street in the world, we could see a propriety in every one confining his attention to his own street; but this is not the case, and therefore we must remind the Christians, that God has made of one blood all nations of men; and that, therefore, all the duties arising out of kindredship or brotherhood, are binding upon them. Say not then with the sullen frown and rebellious mood of murderous Cain, “ Am I my brother's keeper?” for this speech breathes, at the same moment, cruelty and impiety: rather
I will love him as myself, and strain every nerve to do him good, for his own sake, for our heavenly Father's sake, and for God our Saviour's sake. Amen! Be it so!
« Behold the mountain of the Lord
In latter days shall rise
And draw the wondering eyes.
All tribes and tongues shall flow;
And to his house we'll g go.
“ The beam that shines from Sion hill
Shall lighten every land ;
Shall all the world command.
His judgments truth shall guide ;
And quell the sinner's pride.
“No strife shall rage, nor hostile feuds
Disturb those peaceful years;
To pruning-hooks their spears.
Shall crowds of slain deplore ;
And study war no more.
To worship at his shrine;
With holy beauties shine."
DELIVERED AT BRISTOL MISSIONARY ANNIVERSARY, AUGUST 2, 1824.
[My Christian Friends, your preacher for this evening is not, in ordinary cases, fond of apologies, and should not now make any, did he not think that justice to you and to himself required it. It is generally known, by those who attend meetings like the present, that he has been long in a distant country, occupied chiefly in philological labours, and the exceptions are so few, he may say he never preached. That your
may not be hindered by disappointment this evening, he states the fact. Beside, on this anniversary, the subject of missions has been thrice advocated, and the claims thereof so powerfully argued; and the difficulties thereof so well illustrated; and the final success thereof so scripturally exhibited, that nothing remains to be said. All that preachers on this occasion can now do is, but to reiterate truths similar to those which have already been addressed to you.]
THE NATIONS SHALL RENOUNCE LIES AND
JEREMIAH, XVI. 19.
“O Lord, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge, in the
day of affliction. The Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have
inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.'” Without a minute enquiry, on this occasion, into the connection in which this passage of Sacred Writ stands, we deduce from it the three following propositions :
First. That the idols of the nations, are false, vain, and
useless. Secondly. That the most remote nations shall eventually
be convinced that the idols of their fathers
are false, and shall abandon them: and Thirdly. That the worshippers of the true God have,
therefore, every encouragement to use diligently, suitable means to turn the nations from their idolatry, looking to God as their strength.
The first of these propositions requires not here any laboured proof. Amongst us it is now universally acknowledged, that our fathers, who in former ages worshipped idols, inherited only lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit. But there are hundreds of millions of our fellow creatures, who follow implicitly their idolatrous fathers, and are not convinced of the vanity of idols, in the literal sense of the expression; and of the manifold superstitious, foolish, and sometimes cruel usages, connected with them. The idols of ancient Greece, and Rome, and Britain, have perished from under the heavens, and have been swept from the face of the earth; but in various other parts of the world idols still remain in unnumbered multitudes; not only amongst tribes of men, who may with truth be called uncivilized and savage, but also among hundreds of millions to whom these terms cannot with truth be applied; for it is a misuse of terms to call the inhabitants of India and China uncivilized. Their difference from civilized Europe, consists wholly in their being unchristianized. To civilize people, is, (according to authorities,) to reclaim them from savageness and brutality; from what is coarse and rude, to polish their manners, and so forth. Now the fact is, that in China, for example, there is quite as much mildness and civility in the intercourse of human beings, as in Europe, and sometimes more. And men's actions are as much regulated by law and by etiquette, and so are as much polished, as in any nation they can be, till Christianity regenerates and purifies the heart, and fills it with love to God and man, and diffuses abroad, amongst all ranks, some