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suffered in this poor body; my sufferings are great; but what did my Saviour suffer for sins are all forgiven, and I have no fear of me? I have no great joys; but I know my
SARAH H. TOOME. SARAH HANNAH TOOME, a member of the Baptist church meeting at Mount Zion Chapel, Chadwell Street, Clerkenwell, departed this life, aged twenty-four years. At twelve years These were nearly her last words, as she of age she was awakened to a knowledge of her lost and undone state as a fallen sinner. gradually sank during the night, and on TuesBeing brought under the sound of a free-day morning, at half-past six, January 29th, grace gospel by her parents, she, after some 1856, her ransomed spirit took its wished-for time, found that which she was led to seek, flight, to those blessed climes where sickness, viz., pardon and peace in the Person, work, sorrow, pain and death, are felt and feared no blood and righteousness of the dear Redeemer; Kensal Green Cemetery, on Monday, FebHer mortal remains was deposited in and being constrained by his love, she felt it her peculiar privilege to follow her Lord in ruary 4th, upon which occasion her pastor, his own appointed ways. She was baptised Mr. Hazelton, attended, and spoke a few by Mr. Jones, at Jireh Meeting, Brick Lane, consoling words to her relations and friends. St. Luke's, on Lord's-day evening, February Mr. H. also improved the solemn event of her 27th, 1848; she was added to the church, and death on Lord's-day evening, February 10th, from the most appropriate language of the through rich and sovereign grace was preserved to fill up her place in Zion, as an apostle Paul, "Having a desire to depart, and honourable and consistent member, to the day to be with Christ, which is far better." of her death. She had been in a declining state of health for a considerable time, but for the last five months she had not been able to attend the public ordinances of God's house at all: this was a great trial to her, for she loved the habitation of God's house, but desired in submission to say, "Father, thy will be done."
About three months ago she was removed into the country, hoping that the change might prove beneficial, but her God had designed to remove her to more healthy and happy climes. She began more rapidly to sink, and oft expressed a desire, if her heavenly Father's will, to quit her trembing house of clay for her house eternal in the heavens. One morning, when her cousin was assisting her to dress, she said, "Thank you; I have helped you before now, but shall never do so again." Her mother, in reply, said, "Our loss will be your gain." She replied, "Yes; I long to be gone!" At another time she said, "How I wish to be at home, but my Father's time is best. Do pray my dear Lord to give me patience," At another time she said to her mother, "How I wish I could feel as I did once." It was observed, "You must not expect to be always on the mount; you are as safe now as then." She said, "Yes; but not so happy!" About a fortnight before her death, she said, "I fear you think me very impatient, but my sufferings are very great; but they are nothing compared with what my dear Lord suffered for me."
About a week before she returned home she complained of darkness. Her mother repeated
"His way was much darker and rougher than mine,
Did Christ my Lord suffer, and shall I repine ?" She said, "Oh, no! I do not repine, but should like to leave a testimony behind that I am gone home to glory. Do pray my dear Lord to come and fetch me home.'
night previous to her death, when asked as to the state of her mind in the immediate prospect of dissolution, she said, "I know that my departure is near; I have no desire to return to the world. No one knows what I have i
Our sister's gone, and nature weeps,
Till Christ her Lord shall come.
Death's mighty conqueror will appear,
O Death! give up thy sacred trust!
Her body there in weakness sown,
Joined with her spirit mount on high,
When death itself is dead.
O how consoling is the thought,
Christ will have all his blood has bought:
The body perfect and complete
But O! the disembodied soul,
O could we look from scenes of night,
How we should long to drop our clay,
To join the blood washed host;
There vieing with the ransomed throng,
To him that loved and died;
No tempting foe, no dreary night,
THE LATE MR. WHITEMAN,
EXETER, OF UNICORN YARD, AND BOSTON. [The following letter was addressed to Mr. Rees, a member of the church at Unicorn Yard, Tooley Street; and through his kindness, we are permitted to furnish the painful intelligence.-ED.]
DEAR SIR-It has pleased the Sovereign Ruler of the skies to remove, by sudden death, this morning, our dear brother in the Lord, Mr. C. M. Whiteman-by spasmodic affection of the chest, of which he had several sharp attacks in the last fortnight, but not so as to prevent his ministerial duties. Being blessedly assured that to our departed friend to live was Christ, to die was gain: sudden death, sudden glory; I trust the bereaved will, through him who comforts the mourners, (after the deep sorrow into which they are so suddenly plunged, has, through divine aid, in a measure subsided,) be enabled in the ever to be remembered words of the deceased, "look up! look up! there's always a way upwards!" and be enabled to cast their burden on the Lord, and feel his merciful and sustaining goodness, and see his will respecting them-to be able to say, "He doeth all things well." I am, dear sir, yours in the Lord, J. ASHWELL, Deacon. Skirbeck Quarter, Boston,
Lincolnshire, March 27, 1856.
OUR brother's remains were interred on the 2nd April, in the new Cemetery, by Mr. W. Bull, of Burgh; a large concourse of friends and spectators assembled on the solemn occasion, and were greatly affected.
On the 15th, Mr. Bull baptised and received into the church at Ebenezer, three females-an aged, a middle-aged, and a young sister. How little we know what a day may bring forth! Our late brother W. had the pleasing prospect of ministering in these ordinances. Whatever part he and former pas tors had in planting and watering these plants of the heavenly Husbandman's right hand planting, glory to God in the Highest, for thus honoring their labors with an increase, according to his own eternal purpose and grace in our precious Lord and Master Christ Jesus!
Mr. B. in the evening delivered an impressive discourse on Phil. I. 21. "For to me to live is Christ, to die is gain." The collections made morning and evening towards the fund for Mrs. Wightman and her daughter in their bereft and trying condition, amounted to
£12 10s. 7d.
Boston, April 17.
BRIEF ACCOUNT OF
THE LAST DAYS OF ME. WHITEMAN.
(To the Editor of the Earthen Vessel.) DEAR SIR,-I am obliged hastily to forward further particulars relative to our brother W. Rather more than a fortnight previous to our brother's decease, (Thursday, March 27th), he was attacked with spasmodic affection of the chest, which at times recurred,
but not so as to perceptibly affect his minis-
Our dear friend's discourse on the Lord'sday evening before his death, from 2 Cor. iv. 5," For we preach, not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord," was manifestly attended with the Lord's blessing and presence, and produced a striking and deep impression.
course of the sermon, used these words-"We It is remarkable that our late friend, in the know not how soon we may turn our pale faces to the wall." It has been ascertained since his death, that he was in his 71st year.
Regretting my inability to furnish you with something better expressed, and more ready and brief for your purpose, I am, dear sir, your's most respectfully, J. ASHWELL. for the £2 from himself and friends. P.S. Kindest acknowledgments to Mr. Rees
Skirbeck Quarter, Boston, April 19.
"To the chief singer on my stringed instruments."-Habbakuk iii. 19.
willow; and now the night is past, let the
OUR BRITISH BAPTIST CHURCHES.
THE OLD CHURCH BOOK.
the sending for Mr. Gill: these brethren had a meeting too, in opposition, they passed a motion, that Mr. Gill be sent for immediately. After Mr. Scurney had preached his month, YARD CHAPEL, they ordered another letter to be written, and
THE old church book contains minutes and records from 1790 to 1820. It is the intention of the Editor to give out every month in the VESSEL, some account of the principal events which took place under each successive pastor. A church that has been in existence, from records, 136 years, and must have been in existence for some considerable period previous to the building of Unicorn Yard for when this chapel was built, it was in consequence of the lease of the chapel where they previously worshipped having run out, (in which, afterwards, the celebrated Dr. Gill preached,)—this church which must have existed, at least, above a century and a-half, must, necessarily, be connected with many important events that may be helpful to the church of God in the present day. It, perhaps, is the oldest church in existence could it be traced to its first formation. It has been the subject of dissention, alternate prosperity and adversity; and amongst other things, the solemn manner of induction of deacons into office, the cautious and careful anxieties respecting those to be united in church-fellowship, the great solemnity attending the ordination of ministers, and the constant perseverance in prayer when destitute of a pastor, until God was pleased to send them one these things are what the church may safely imitate and return to in the present day; for it must be acknowledged that Zion is in this day, in these matters, almost destitute of that feeling our father Jacob had when God appeared to him at Bethel, when he said, "how dreadful is this place, this is none other than the house of God, and the gate of heaven."
The old church book begins with a brief statement of the affairs of this church from the death of the late pastor, Mr. Benjamin Stinton, of the old chapel, to the settlement in the new meeting house, under Mr. William Arnold.
Mr. Benjamin Stinton died, February 11th, 1718. After several ministers had occasionally supplied the pulpit, the church cast their eyes on two, more than the rest likely to serve them; ; they were to preach to the church a month each; and in this important business, a serious division took place, and painful for the time, were the circumstances into which they were plunged.
The church was stayed, June 28th, 1819. It was agreed that Mr. Scurney should be sent for first; a letter was ordered to be written by the deacons, and laid before the church the Tuesday following, signed by all present; but there was a jealousy on the part of some of the brethren, supposing it was designed to put off
signed contrary to the only deacon present. Mr. Gill was sent for by them, and came up from Kettering, in Northamptonshire, and preached to the people about six weeks. Mr. Gill's party then proceeded to elect him pastor, and taking female's votes-which had not been allowed for thirty years-obtained a majority.
The following Friday," the deacons and a considerable number of the brethren met, and consulted what was best to be done to save the church from what they considered impending ruin. The church meeting being the following Tuesday, they determined to give in their protest, signed with their own hands, against the pretended election, viz.: that Mr. Gill's friends had chosen him illegally, contrary to the minds of the deacons, and majority of the brethren. Mr. Gill's adherents utterly refused to take the matter into further consideration, affirming his election to be valid. The women's votes not being allowed, it was voted that all the former proceedings respecting Mr. Gill's election were void. Brother Atkins proposed a scrutiny, but the opposing party refused. The church therefore proceeded to provide a ministry for the future, and appointed two brethren to let Mr. Gill know the result. Sad altercation and strife ensued. Those who adhered to Mr. Gill, read a paper to the church and congregation; the others, another Lord's-day, did the same. They each appealed to ministers of the same denomination, but all means failed. Mr. Gill's friends rent themselves from the church, met for worship at Mr. Crosly's school, till the old church removed to the new meeting house, Unicorn Yard, and Mr. Gill and his friends afterwards occupied the old chapel. Ninety-nine members left to follow Mr. Gill; One hundred and twenty-two remained behind, including all the deacons.
The contract for building Unicorn Yard Chapel, was closed January 9th, 1818; Abraham Atkins, Esq., on behalf of the church, and Francis Randall, builder; the cost amounting to £350. All that is recorded of their first opening the place, is "Lord's-day, June 26. We met at our new meeting place, and Mr. Owen preached in the morning, Mr. Harrison in the afternoon."
REMARKS. This first extract contains a subject of a very unpleasant nature. It might be thought best to have passed it over, and so it would, were it not that the circumstances of the present day in many of the churches, are similar. The wise man says, "The thing which hath been, is that which shall be done: there is no new thing under the sun." Dissensions will arise; even a Paul and Barnabas could not set their horses together, but were
compelled to part asunder. "Offences will respondents of this periodical. We are come," but a woe is pronounced against those sorry our old friend has no better work to through whom they come. It is a surprising do, in his last days;-still, we hope some thing that this church should have been kept good may result from his severe ministerial together for so long a time. What a mighty chastisements. shaking was this separation even before the new chapel was built, yet here God has been pleased to maintain a church, which though often in contention, has not fallen to pieces many times of revival and prosperity hath been her lot. Perhaps, not a better history of this church could be given, than is recorded in the 107th Psalm.
As many communications are reaching us, expressive of unhappy feelings in the minds of some in Plymouth against us, we answer once for all,-the only reason on earth why Charles Waters Banks did not fulfil his engagement in preaching in How Street, during the month of April, was, because Alas, what imperfect creatures are the best neither his circumstances, nor the present conof Christians; short comings and blemishes dition of the Church at Unicorn Yard, would will attend, more or less, all the living family, suffer him to leave London. His previous while here below. Well might the church ex- visits to Plymouth have been mutually happy claim, "O, give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever." ones; and as regards his promised rec nt Instability, weakness, unmindfulness of our visit, the deacons and committee at How mercies, is what we must all plead guilty to Street, behaved in the kindest manner poslike those whose lot fell this side of Jordan. sible ;-When the church at Unicorn Yard, There was poor Reuben, "unstable as water," wrote them begging them to release their yet divine life was there; and Moses says, pastor from his engagement to serve them, "let Reuben live and not die, and let not his they did with sympathy, and in a most honmen be few." "Gad, a troop overcomes him;" ourable manner: and deeply grateful we so the Christian often falls, if not outwardly, feel to them; for, although, we should have he does inwardly, before his foes; yet triumphs been truly glad to have spoken to the friends in Christ Jesus, and by faith believes. "Though at How Street, for another month, yet being I fall, I shall arise again, and shall overcome at the last." And the half-tribe of Manassah prevented by adverse winds, it was charitable forgetfulness- unmindful of his mercies, a in them to give a release; and we sincerely want of dependence upon his faithfulness- pray that Mr. Ball, who is chosen as their will stick to us like burs, while here below. All prove we have no continuing city here. How many churches have risen and disappeared since this church was first formed; and as it has been so long preserved, may we not hope it may yet be the birth-place of many precious souls. It has lately been put in good, substantial repair, and in the order of providence, a suitable ministry has been provided, and though the waters have been troubled, some are waiting anxiously to step into the pool. May the Lord of the harvest bring in thither many precious souls, who shall declare in Zion the goodness of the Lord.
One remark more. There is no account of seeking the Lord by prayer in this matter, respecting the choice of a pastor; the next time they were destitute of a pastor, we shall find them seeking the Lord's direction by persevering prayer and watchfulness, and no dissension ensued: and that thing which is begun in prayer, attended with a watching the Lord's hand, shall not meet with disappointment. The next extract will contain interesting events under the pastorate of Mr. Arnold, who laboured in this church 14 years, and died happy in the Lord.
future pastor, may labour among them for many years, with great success; and much to the comfort of the multitude of dear believing souls who dwell in those large towns, Plymouth, Devonport, Stonehouse, &c.
Mr. Samuel Nicholson, the Baplist minister We have a long account of the death of of Plymouth from it we extract the following:
Mr. Samuel Nicholson was born at Devonport, on the 28th of April, 1801, where his father, who was a respectable man, carried on business. (His venerable mother still survives). As the eldest son in a large family, Mr. Nicholson, after receiving the rudiments of general education, was at an early period taken from school to enter upon his but the work of selffather's business
improvement still went on. His father was deacon of the Baptist Church assembling in Pembroke-street Chapel, under the care of Thomas Wilcocks, and at an early age Mr. Nicholson became a member of the same church. Whilst still very young he took part in its public services, preaching in the villages; and at the age of nineteen, he occasionally supplied the pulpit for Mr. Wilcocks
HOW STREET CHAPEL, PLYMOUTH, in his absence from home. At this time Mr.
LATE MR. SAMUEL NICHOLSON.
A PERSON, signing himself "A Baptist, How Street, Plymouth," has been industriously employed of late, in writing letters to different ministers, criticising and condemning the Editor, and some of the cor
Wilcocks, who was a man of considerable acquirement and much mental culture, engaged his young friend to assist him in the duties preparing him by suitable instruction, for the of his school, principally with the view of work of the Christian ministry.
After Mr. Nicholson had remained for some
time with Mr. Wilcocks, he was invited as an occasional supply to preach at How-street
Chapel, in Plymouth, which was then with- | express in words the assurance I have of my out a pastor, and his services were so accept- salvation and union to the Lord Jesus Christ. able that, after a lengthened but most satis- I feel within me now the germ and the prinfactory probation, in 1823, he was solicited by ciple of eternal life. It is not life for me, but the church and congregation to become their eternal life within, and I know that because stated minister. Previously to this, the at- my Redeemer liveth I live also." And so he tendance at the chapel had been very much passed over to the other side, and they saw diminished, but in a short time the congrega- | him no more. Mr. Nicholson died at four tion increased, and in this important position o'clock in the afternoon of March 13th, and Mr. Nicholson found his appointed sphere.- the general expression of sorrow which this In 1822 he married Miss Jane Nicholson, and event has occasioned shows emphatically that by this marriage there were twelve children, consistent and holy conduct has the promise of whom nine survive. Mr. Nicholson's min- of the life that now is, as well as of the life to isterial ability soon attracted attention not come. only in Plymouth, but amongst the churches of his denomination elsewhere, and he was more than once solicited to leave the congregation in How-street for other stations, which, in a worldly point of view, offered greater advantages. At one time he was earnestly entreated to take a prominent place in the management of the Baptist Missions in Calcutta, and subsequently to become the successor of the late Robert Hall, in Bristol. But Mr. Nicholson believed that God had given him a work to do which would fully reward his most stedfast and diligent care, and so he remained firm at his post, often, indeed, rendering temporary and valuable service elsewhere, but still returning with undiminished interest to the people of his charge, and under such affectionate care they grew and prospered. The congregation consolidated, the church increased, until at length, in 1844, the spacious and noble chapel in George-street was begun. The members of the church and congregation exerted themselves with most zealous liberality, and almost without debt, this fine building was opened for Divine Worship in 1845.
Pre-eminently he was a good man, thoroughly earnest and sincere. His religion was not assumed for Sabbath-days and public services, but was the mainspring of his being. It was not a thing that could be taken up or laid down at pleasure, but the inwrought conscious experience of a heart at peace with God. He was a very diligent student of the Scripture, and from its constant and careful perusal had derived unrestrained sympathy with the doctrines of the gospel, as the efficient cause of practical holiness.
As he lived so he died. The truths that he had commended from the pulpit, and illustrated in his life, were with him to the very last; and as he drew near to the dark river. his feet almost touching the brim, there was no cloud upon the spirit, nor even the shadow of a cloud. He saw the Cross still, as he had seen it when in health and vigour, only that it seemed nearer and more precious. Give my love," said he to one of his early and attached friends, " to all the brethren. My strength is hourly diminishing, but say to them, all is well." What may be the state of the disembodied spirit I know not, but I know that my trustee has the full confidence of the Father, and that he has power, and grace, and love sufficient to carry out his engagements, even to the very end."
still more dearly beloved he said, only a very little before his death, "I almost hesitate to
On Wednesday morning, at half-past ten o'clock, "devout men carried him to his burial." His church-christians of all denominations-christian pastors-the old and the young-followed his mortal remains to the chapel in George-street. Several ministers of the town and neighbourhood took part in this solemn service. His old and attached friend, Thomas C. Hine, of Sydenham, addressed the congregation and Thomas Horton, of Devonport, committed the body to the dust, a glorious trust-"in sure and certain hope of a joyful resurrection," Well was it said, Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his.
THE PROGRESS OF THE BAPTIST CAUSE AT
BETHEL CHAPEL, LEIGHTON,
DEAR BROTHER BANKS.-When God was pleased, in the order of his providence, to deprive this church of its pastor by the sudden death of the late much-esteemed Mr. William Roberts, you kindly directed the friends to our much-beloved friend and brother, Mr. Joseph Wilkins, as a suitable person to succeed him. After he had preached a few weeks, there was but one opinion among the brethren, and he received an unanimous invitation to the pastorate. The Great Head of the church has from the commencement given his sanction and blessing to the means used. The congregation has gradually increased; the church has been edified and built up; has dwelt in peace and love; and the God of peace and love has dwelt in the midst of it. The Word preached has been attended by the almighty energy of the Holy Spirit. Sinners have been converted to God, and frequently additions have been made to the church. The chapel has been enlarged and beautified, at the cost of near £170. There has been no accumulation of debt, but an annual reduction of it of nearly £20. In February last, Mr. Spurgeon preached; the clear proceeds were £27. This, with £3 since, raised by private subscription, had enabled the trustees to pay off £30 owing on a note of hand; so that the chapel funds are in excellent condition; the whole debt on the chapel being only about £19, and that they have without interest.
During the three years Mr. Wilkins resided here, he was almost universally respected; and his people often said, "How beautiful