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years, Margaret, widow of the late Mr. Richd. Howard, of the above place (who died in May last). She was esteemed by many, and was a sincere lover of the truth as it is in Jesus. She had, during her life, been the subject of much darkness and bondage, and knew well what it was "to groan, being burdened;" but in prospect of her approaching end, she could say, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me, and thy (pastoral) rod and thy staff (of promise) they comfort me." 23rd Psalm, 4th verse. When asked if she was longing to dwell with Jesus, she said with emphasis, "Yes, for my soul doth wait for the Lord and in his word do I hope." On the 130th Psalm being read to her she remarked, "That is just where I am." Truly her standing was upon the Rock of ages Christ Jesus her Lord. She breathed her last without a sigh or groan. "Blessed are the

dead that die in the Lord."

Her mortal remains were interred on the 8th in the same vault with her beloved partner, at Norwood Cemetery, when Mr. J. Wells of the Surrey Tabernaele, made a most solemn and appropriate address, as also some weighty and experimental remarks on the following Lord's-day evening, founded on the 7th verse of the 130th Psalm. We may say of them as it is said of Saul and Jonathan, "They were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided." 2 Samuel chapter i. 23rd verse.

feel, of His greatness, but as a drop to the
ocean, an atom to infinity, a taper to the sun,
or a transient ray, compared with "the glory
that shall be revealed in us, when Christ who
is our life, shall appear, and we shall be like
him; for we shall see him as He is." It
makes my very heart leap for joy, so that with
dear Kent I am constrained to sing,
"My soul anticipates the day,

Would stretch her wings and soar away,
To aid the song, a palm to bear,
And bow the chief of sinners there."


Fly on! fly on! ye lagging moments, and bring the longed for hour, when I shall realize the satisfaction spoken of in Psalm xvii. 15. Yet, content to wait my precious Jesu's time, for that is well and must be best.

Oh, my brother, you know something of "His way being in the sea, and his footsteps in the great waters." Yet he hath not forsaken you. No, nor never will. For he says, "The mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed, but his kindness he will not take from his people, nor suffer his faithfulness to fail."

Cheer up, then; you need not fear any stress upon this anchor, it is unchanging and unchanged; here, too, is plenty of cable to run out as far as the utmost bounds of the necessities, wants, woes, or fears. Ah! thy heights and depths of everlasting love! how sweet, how precious, and satisfying; no repast on earth, or of earthly things, can be compared with it. It is great, rich, large, free, full, everlasting, eternal, unchanged, and unchanging, and to feel its sacred cords not only drawing forth but binding our hearts to Jesus (our Jesus) in whom it shines-through whom it flows-and by whose promised Comforter (the Holy Ghost) we have been taught it, is precious indeed.

True, we are not yet free from the wilderness of its cares; but this incomparable love of our covenant God raises us above them, and sanctifies them to us, so that we cannot only bless him for his smiles, but for our afflictions also. How these things endear our once suffering Head and Lord! Who can be compared with him? Nothing! no, nothing: the sun is dark, the moon dim, and the sparkling stars fade, and loose their lustre, when he by whom they were made shows himself, and his love in bleeding, suffering, and dying for our sin, guilt, shame, to put it all away; so, that if sought for, he says, "they shall not be found." Praise him, praise him; yes, for ever praise him! we must, we will! Eternity will be too short to tell out one half of his worth, his beauty, or his love; for it is like himself "unsearchable." (Eph. iii. 17-20.)

MY DEAR BROTHER.-In the immutable ties of that covenant ordered in all things and sure: I greet you, and pray the God of all mercy to bless and prosper you abundantly, so that your soul may be in health, and prosper; your heart warmed with live coals from off the altar-flame beneath the softening, precious influence of the Holy Ghost. So that your heart, in very deed, may be both manifestively and experimentally, the temple of the Eternal Three, the everlasting Rock, sure Refuge and never-failing defence of the weary, heavy laden, buffetted, and temptest-tossed family.

I thank you for your kind remembrance of me, and was glad to hear of your spiritual welfare; likewise to see the kind supporting arm of our Covenant God beneath you. Your cup has indeed been full, and the draught very bitter to flesh and reason. Yet, faith can say, "It is well." So that afflictions, in His dear and compassionate hand, work for good. It must be so, for He himself declares, and has determined they should, neither can sin, satan, or the world alter it. No! no! My counsel," says our God, "shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure." Oh! what majesty attends His words, or rather is attend-be rich, happy and blessed. I often sigh for ant upon them. closer conformity to the image of my lowly


Well, my brother, may the God of all grace cause the precious drops of his love to water your soul abundantly; then, indeed, will you

Yes, His power and love can warm your Lord. Oh! yes; "that I may know him," heart in America, and mine in England. suits me for an every day errand to the throne. "Who is a God like unto our God? excellent And I believe my God will hear my cry, and in power, fearful in praises, doing wonders." in his own time also graciously answer, notAnd what is all we have seen, or may see, or withstanding the formidable array of foes. Ah,

in myself I might fear, but with my Captain's victory, obedience, and blood, whom shall I fear? For he hath spoiled principalities, and powers, and made a show of them openly; the Holy Ghost takes of these realities, and reveals them to the election of grace, as done for and on their behalf. Truly the apostle might well cry out in the apprehension of these superlative riches, "I'm full and have need of nothing!" Yes, these are indeed durable riches, in the possession of these we need not fear either want or loss, for they are inexhaustible and unlooseable. Oh, we never shall be able to say we live up to, or beyond, our spiritual wealth or inheritance in Christ, for they are unsearchable, Eph. iii. 6.

I am happy to hear you are favoured with the means of grace, likewise that you find it good to wait upon the Lord, and would say, "Wait my brother, wait upon the Lord, for none ever waited upon him in vain.

We are, as a church, going on much as usual, having had one or two additions to number since you left; and I trust the Lord is still owning his own truth. Mrs. is dead and buried about three months since. (This reminds me of what the Lord says"Vengeance is mine," &c.) Her poor miserable husband is spared still. O may grace touch his heart! Would it not be a miracle of mercy Old Mrs. T. is still this side Jor

dan, only waiting the summons, "Come up higher." It will be a sweet exchange for her dear old saint! Likewise B. F. is in the same posture, longing to wing her way to the realms where sorrow is banished, and

pain unknown.

Thus you will see, some of the shocks are fast ripening for harvest; and what a harvest it will be, when all the wheat is gathered into Jesus' garner, without a single grain of tare or darnel among the whole! Well might Watts sing

"O glorious hour! O blest abode!

I shall be near, and like my God! And flesh and sin no more control The sacred pleasures of my soul !" Friends R., M., L., and wives, &c., &c., send their Christian love to you and Mrs. B. Miss S. has entered into the joy of her Lord.

You will perceive from the above, we are still surrounded with changes; but the God in whom we trust, knows no change, but everlastingly was, is, and will be. Solid Rock this, my brother! no fear of sinking, decaying, or destruction, while Malachi 1st and 6th stand on record; so that while he lives, we must; (John x. 26); and while he wills, we shall (John xvii. 24). They are welcome, that like, to measure Jehovah's love by frames and feelings; I would prefer, and am determined, the Lord being my Helper, to compute it only by its Author. You request my thoughts upon the subject of knowledge in heaven. One must suffice; -it being among the hidden things. I do not apprehend our knowledge as creatures will be more contracted there than here; but one only object will there, I am satisfied, engross our affections, and be the supreme source of infinite and inconceivable delight and satisfaction; and that Object, the Lamb

in the midst of the throne; the ever-rising Spring, and flowing Ocean without an ebb, of infinite, eternal and unsullied bliss. And shall we want more? No! heaven contains no more; the Father could give no more; and the Holy Ghost reveal no more; Christ All in all suffices the church here, and depend upon it, it will suffice her hereafter.

But I must draw to a close, or I shall tire you with my scrawl. Through mercy, we are as a family well. O Lord, help us to watch thy hand, and give us a grateful heart for all mercies, to the present momont. Mrs. Comfort unites with myself and family in love to you and Mrs. B., together with your son and daughter.

And now, my brother, though we may never meet more this side eternity, yet, with the hope and prospect of meeting on the other, where adieus and farewells, sorrow, sighing, pain, woe, sin and grief are not, nor ever will be known, I now bid you farewell, in the language of Ephesians iii. 20, 21, and subscribe myself, your's affectionately in Christ Jesus, ISAAC COMFORT. 4, Peter Street, Yeovil, January 31st.

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O fttimes, thy hands, like Moses's may drop,
N or Aaron's help, with Hur's, can hold them
E ternal power shall then be thy support. [up,
Goliath may in threat'ning posture stand;
One stone from Zion's brook shall slay the man.
O ft Agag's, delicate, will whining, cry-
Now bitter death is past, I shall not die:
I ncline not to such charitable' fools, [souls.
No, though they tell you, that they care for
'T is 'mystery,' 'iniquity,' upon their foreheads
He who hath made, appoints them to the pit,
Eternal truth declares, and none can alter it.
N imrods may hunt, and far pursue the prize,
A ppear, through swiftness, many to surprise,
Make haste, but little speed, fromwrath to come;
E ach step they take, declares, from truth

they're gone. Opinions, floating in the brains of some, [gone. Fill them with pride, but bursting, they are T is not to might, nor power, nor eloquence, Heaven's King is pleas'd to give the recomE ternal sov'reignty his right maintains. [pence; L ift up thy sword, then, "Little One," and cry Onward, ye hosts, and conquer, though ye die, Raise high the standard, yea, the truth unfold; D read not thy foes, Christ has o'ercome the world. D. PEGG, Claxton.



THE fourth anniversary of Mr. John E., Bloomfield's pastorate in the above place was celebrated on Tuesday, February 5th, 1856. At five o'clock about four hundred friends partook of tea in the chapel; after which a meeting was held, at which the pastor presided.

In opening he expressed his gratitude and thankfulness to Almighty God for the blessings and mercies vouchsafed unto himself and the church during the four years of his pastorate. He had received into the church during that time two hundred members, fifty of whom had been admitted during the past year; and they had further cause for thankfulness, that during the past year not a single discordant note had jarred the harmony and peace of the whole church; and expressed a hope that that year was but a sample and har-church. Each has a peculiar importance atbinger of those to come. tached to it. So oft as there is a gathering together, let it be for what purpose it may, you are each and all bound to attend, unless circumstances over which you have no control, prevent you. If the glory of God, and the good of His church, be your object, never say,

not only must we love all, but we must regard those who stand in office; for if they are fitted to fulfil the position in which you as a church have placed them, then they are entitled to that respect and confidence which their office merits, but if they appear unfitted, and forfeit your confidence, then I say it is your place to put them out of that office. If they are wrong, they should submit to your decision, and if there be nothing wrong, they will court examination. Farther, there are obligations binding on all members of churches-especially to attend regularly at that place and with that people with whom they are identified,-1st, when there is a gathering together for the public worship of God; 2nd, when there is a gathering together for prayer; 3rd, in gathering together to attend to the internal affairs of the

Mr. GEORGE WYARD addressed the meeting on




ings are far beneath the position you have as-
Oh, its only a prayer meeting." Such say-
sumed. Whensoever the doors are open, Sun-
day or week day, (unless business prevent
you) be you there. For if one is at liberty to
stay away, all are at liberty to stay away.
Concerning church meetings much has been
said-both for and against. Some have said
they should only be held once a quarter, but
if you admit the principle, why not once a
week, or as often as circumstances make them
really needful; and supposing a time is ap-
pointed, then and there you should be in your

of which the following is a brief outline :-
After some introductory remarks, the speaker
said-There are in the church of Christ the
offices of deacons and pastor-I know of no
others; while the body is composed of a num-
ber of those who love the Lord Jesus Christ in
sincerity and in truth, who are bound to love
one another, though they may belong to dif-
ferent sections of the church of Christ. I
grant you that you may love some more than
others; indeed some individuals it appears
difficult to love at all: and if we do love them
it is just where God loved them in Christ.
Sometimes we perceive traits in their charac-place; but if you are too indifferent to be present,
ter so opposed to the truth as it is in Jesus-pray do not have anything to say about what
that, although we believe they will go to
heaven, we are inclined to say, "You may lent to attend, must be too ignorant to judge.
was done-be silent; for he who is too indo-
go by yourself; we hope to meet you at the Some complain that they don't know the
end of the journey, where all differences will members of the church. Why is it? Because
be put aside." But while we are under an you do not attend when you should; and to
obligation to love all Christians, we are under those who wilfully neglect the ordinances of
especial obligation to love those of our own God's house, a day of reckoning will come.
body; not simply in word, but in deed and in There is no holier or happier state on earth,
truth-at all times, and under all circum- than a church state. And while it is binding
stances; to shew towards them sympathy, on all members to attend, it is also binding on
pity, kindness, help-to "rejoice with those them to assist in the support of the cause;
that do rejoice," and to " weep with those that and to uphold the pastor's hands. When in-
weep." There are certain members who are stead of cheerfulness, you see gloom depicted
differently situated to others—they are not so in your pastor's countenance, endeavour to
respectable: and consequently there is a de- make yourself acquainted with the cause; for
gree of diffidence in approaching those who if he is downcast you may conclude there is
are above them in the world's estimation; yet something wrong. See to it, therefore, whe-
some special Providence may occur to raise ther you may not remove the cause, and the
that brother out of his poverty, and he that is effect will cease; else we may hear you saying,
in affluence may suddenly be brought down to
"Ah! I don't hear my pastor now.'
poverty, for of a truth it is written, "We Because you offered up no prayer on his be-
know not what a day may bring forth." And half; and you are irregular in your attend-

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ance and so circumstances compel the pastor | theory on several grounds: First, because it to rend himself from his people. Therefore, rests for support, almost entirely upon one or be prayerful and uniform in your attendance; two solitary portions of Scripture, and these so you may preserve him where and what he occurring in a book filled with highly-wrought is. Farther, it is binding on all churches, not imagery, of confessedly difficult interpretation. only to pray for the pastor, and give your at- A book of symbols in fact, the exact import tendance, but give of your property also. The of which has never been ascertained, from apostle Paul says, "If we have sown unto you the explanation of which, the most learned spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall and devout have instinctively shrunk, and reap your carnal things ?" We must remem- which even Luther at one time discarded from ber that the pastor must live as others, and the cannon of inspiration. I allude to the expenses must be paid; and we are each un- Apocalypse; and to that part of it which der obligation to bestow our quota. Many depicts "the first resurrection;" a resurrecother things, might be adverted to; but I tion which our pre-millennial friends underdo not feel quite at liberty to enter into them. stand literally, and which is made to compreLive as brethren, be faithful, for Christ's sake. hend all the elect up to that period, or all the Amen. martyrs, or some of the martyrs only, for herein they differ widely. For the sake of brevity, I shall remark that this first resurrection is not the resurrection taught by Christ and his apostles:Not by Christ; for according to his teaching, "All that are in the graves shall hear his voice," at the same time, or in that "hour," "and shall come forth; they that have done good unto the resurrection of life; and that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation." Here the resurrection is represented as one event, and as comprehending all mankind. The same doctrine is taught in the parable of the tares, and of the net, and of the Shepherd dividing his sheep from the goats. Nor is it the resurrection announced to the Corinthians; for that comprehends all that are in Christ as a head; whereas the pre-millennial resurrection takes in at most only the elect up to that period, after which the world is to be converted by Christ, and continue a thousand years-during which period more conversions are to take place than in all the previous history of mankind. Nor is it the resurrection described to the Thessalonians, for then "The Lord Jesus shall be revealed in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God, by which is meant not a providential visitation, but a final recording. Again; the resurrection of the just is said to take place at the last day, and at the last trumpet sound; but according to pre-Millennarianism, there must be two last days, and two last trumpet sounds! "He that hath ears to hear let him hear." Now, where the literal and the figurative disagree, either the literal must rule the figurative, or the figurative must rule the literal. If the former, pre-Millennarianism is doomed; if the latter, then have we no sure word of prophecy to which we do well to take heed." But the first resurrection is clearly figurative. It is a vision; and the ground of the scene is the Roman Empire. The period of its history reaches from the commencement of the Christian era to the subversion of Imperial Rome. But the first resurrection is yet future, and, therefore, cannot be literal. But if not literal it must be figurative. And if figurative it must be the resurrection of a party previously depressed. Now this has always been the case with the Church of Christ. But so it shall not always be. The church shall be the majority; and the present majority become the minority.


Mr. WILLIAM PALMER, of Homerton Row, next spoke to the meeting, having for his subject



IS IT A VISIBLE OR SPIRITUAL REIGN? This is a question upon which nearly all the intelligence of the age has been concentrated, and no small amount of criticism expended. Will the period referred to, be characterized by the descent and residence of Christ, in visible humanity, or will it be as now, a spiritual reign? I may just remark that the word millennium signifies a thousand, and in its connexion with years, it means a thousand years. But whether this number be literal, mystical, or prophetical, is matter of great controversy. Hence some refer it to the ministry of Christ; some to the ministry of the apostles; some to the whole gospel dispensation; some to the last thousand years of the gospel ministry; some to a new dispensation which is to follow this, and continue till the end of the world; and some to a dispensation which is to commence after the dissolution of the present earth. Persons who believe in the visible appearance of Christ, at the commencement of this era, are termed pre-Millennarians; while those who suppose he will come at the end of a spiritual reign, are designated post-Millennarians. From these brief remarks, you will observe the subject to be a fruitful one, and the several systems to be marked by differences of great magnitude, the comparative merits of which it is not my province now to examine. Modern pre-Millennarianism I hold to be a delusion; but it is not my intention to utter any offensive remarks towards those who think otherwise, holding, as I do, that all have a right to form their own opinions; and that however far they differ from me, I differ as far from them, the line being the same length, measure from which end of it you may. While, however, I accord to the right of private judgment, I cannot cherish as certainly true the visible descent of Christ to this material earth, for the purpose of setting up a politico-ecclesiastical rule-taking up his abode at some central spot-some say at Jerusalem; the Millerites fixed upon one of the United States; Joseph Smith elected Kirtland, and afterwards Narvoo; while President Brigham is clear upon the Salt Lake. Now I object to this


Again: I have theological objections. The system I am now combatting interferes with the whole compass of doctrinal truth. It ignores, for example, the kingly authority and rule of Christ. Last Tuesday evening, I attended a lecture, entitled, The Misunderstood Prayer-Thy Kingdom Come;" which the lecturer explained of the millennial reign; maintaining that the kingdom of God was not the gospel, nor the church, nor anything else short of the millennial reign. But when Jesus began preaching, he said, "The kingdom of God is at hand." John did the same. And what was at hand two thousand years ago, can hardly be yet future. Paul told the Collossians God had "translated them into the kingdom of his dear Son." Now if Jesus Christ had not then a kingdom, how could the Collossians have been translated into it? How could any one? And how could the same apostle have said, "Wherefore we, receiving a kingdom that cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear."

It is argued, by pre-Millennarians, that the present dispensation is merely an introductory one. Paul, however, said it could not be "moved," for it remained after heaven and earth had been shaken. Again, we are reminded that the present dispensation has been tried and has failed-that the present class of agents-the existing order of things as ordained of God, though sufficient for the elect, are incompetent to the salvation of the world. It might suffice, one would think, simply to inquire, is the gospel designed to save more than the elect? Did Christ expect to save all mankind by the foolishness of preaching? If the gospel was designed to convert the world to Christ,-to save all the elect, and all the rest who are blinded,-if, I say, this was its mission, why then it has failed-grievously, and ignominiously failed. There is no concealing the fact. Nor is this attempted. Indeed it is made the basis of an argument; for say they, it is in consequence of this failure that a new dispensation is required-that Christ must appear in visible humanity and convert the world himself. This is the pith and sinew of their cause. They assume the world is to be converted to Christ; the gospel is unequal to a mission of this magnitude; therefore, the visible reign of Christ is a necessity. These assumptions involve grave considerations, and under pre-millennarianism a question of vital importance: a question which will probably divide the churches as Fullerism did some fifty years since. Christian brethren, bear in mind the Saviour you love will come again, but not in the way and manner described by pre-Millennialists. The Saviour reigns now: Personally, Sovereignly, Efficiently. We have the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree in one." These are to continue till "the end of the world," up to which consummation Jesus says, "Lo, I am with you alway." If you stake the success of the gospel on human agency, you err, knowing neither the Scriptures nor the power of God; and you will witness failure, lamentable failure, and nothing


Power and prudence shall thus change hands; and what shall the change be "but life from the dead ?" This is the "first resurrection." And the second is like unto it; thus preserving the theory of correspondence, so dear to our pre-millennial brethren. For the rest of the dead-the remnant, or remaining part of the dead party, live not again till the thousand years are expired, when Satan is loosed for a little season, deceives the nations, and the end of the world ensues. That the resurrection under notice is a figurative one seems plain. The angel, the key, the chain, the seal, the abyss, the physical contact, were all figurative. Besides, John saw the souls, not the bodies of them that had been slain, of whom "the first resurrection" consisted. Such a figurative representation is common both in the Old and New Testaments, in secular history, and in common discourse. I am aware our friends are great sticklers for the "literal sense." They turn poetry into prose, and heaven into earth, for a" literal sense." But will they tell us what they mean by a literal sense? Are they agreed among themselves on that point? Is there a single writer among them, who abides by the literal sense, or who is consistent with himself? There are passages of Scripture possessing much force and beauty when interpreted spiritually, which not only lose all their excellency when interpreted literally, but which breed confusion in the sacred oracles, and set even inspired penmen together by the ears. For instance, I read in Genesis "While the earth remaineth, seed-time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease;" but in the millennium it is said, "there shall be no night there." Of the same period it is said, "The city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon to shine in it," "Neither shall the sun light upon them, nor any heat;" whereas, Isaiah saith, "The light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days." In John's millennium, as explained by our brethren, "there was no more sea; but Zechariah says, "Living waters shall go forth from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea.' John says, "There shall be no more death;" yet Isaiah says, "The child shall die an hundred years old." Again, I read, "Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself." But in Ezekiel's vision, which our brethren say beautifully describes the millennium, it is expressly said, one of the gates of the temple shall be open on the day of the new moon; and on the new moons, sacrifices shall be offered. Now when has the moon withdrawn itself? Why, precisely at the time when the new moon begins! Interpret these passages literally; and see the consequence: the laws of nature are reversed, the ordinances of heaven are changed, if not destroyed; apostles contradict the prophets, and the prophets contradict one another, and themselves too. So that by literal interpretation the pre-millennial theory stands utterly condemned.


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