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one universal brotherbood all the families of man. The work is going on even now with the most delightful success. We are encouraged to proceed by what has been effected. assured by thorough experiment, that the work can be achieved. We know that triumphant success will ultimately ensue. This is so obvious, that it requires scarcely any faith to believe it. Men of God---men who count not their lives dear unto them-men warmed with a Saviour's love, are now laboring for the salvation of the lost, at more than five hundred different sections of the wide wastes of idolatry. In many of these sections, the temples of a bloody superstition have crumbled and fallen. Nowhere will they be able permanently to withstand the aggressive action of truth. The whole system will sink, and upon its ruin will be built the temple of God's love and praise. Thousands of the dark heathen have been regenerated by the Spirit of God. Thousands of others are inquiring, with deep solemnity, the way of life. Prayer is heard. No sacrifice is lost--not the smallest, if made in the sincerity of the Gospel. An impulse has been given by a hand from heaven, and the wheels of this car of salvation will move on. There are hearts that will keep fast to this work of love, till they cease to beat. And there will be more coming up to the help of the Lord. Though some may not choose to participate in the sublime undertaking, others will. Multitudes will esteem it a pleasure and a privilege to share in this benevolent service, and an honor, to be co-workers with God in this most glorious of all his works.
Some may be ready to ask, In what way may we contribute to the advancement of the Redeemer's kingdom? I shall mention but two methods. One is, by prayer for the cllusion of the Holy Spirit, and the blessing of God upon missionary efforts. It must be felt deeply, that, do all we can, we must look to God for his Spirit to achieve the work of regeneration. None will be born again, except those who are born of the Spirit. Preachers may be sent every where, faithful and powerful as Paul; but if the Holy Ghost do not attend their ministrations, not a heart will be subdued. Prayer, then, is indispensably needed. The Spirit is given in answer to prayer. It will not be extensively given, unless strong and believing supplication is extensively offered. Every thing will fail, without the mighty, struggling importunities of prevailing intercession. Ilow important, how interesting then, is the Monthly Concert. What praying heart does not love the Monthly Concert ? Ever remember and hallow it, ye who feel for a ruined world, by the offered incense of your most fervent desires.
Another way to assist in evangelizing the heathen is by pecuniary contributions. The Gospel cannot be sent to distant nations without expense. Money is required, and solicited, and when given, is well used, and to the last mite accounted for. And what a blessed way to use money,—to consecrate it to Christ, and send it abroad on errands of salvation. The individual, who has resources, may be virtually preaching the Gospel to the needy and perishing in both hemispheres. He may be indirectly instrumental in leading a great number of pagan sinners to the cross and to heaven. All may do something to this end. The poorest have a mite. Whatever it may be in the Christian's power to give, let him joyfully give it. If any refuse, let them remember the appalling inference the Spirit of God makes from their conduct. “He that hath this world's goods, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?" How can we be Christians, if we refuse to make any temporal sacrifices for the eternal well-being of the dying heathen ? Have we a particle of the Spirit of the Lord Jesus, if we can stand unmoved, and see the souls of our fellow-men pour like an unceasing deluge, into a dark, lost eternity ? Just look at this thing. By a trifling sacrifice we may save others from the enduring of everlasting death. By parting with a portion of what God may have given us, we may be the means of placing sumo poor, blind, miserable, guity descendants of the apostacy in an inheritance of glory.
Who, now, in view of facts and considerations like these, can shut up his heart and his hands with the grasp of a tenacious selfishness, and say his property is his own, and he has a right to keep it.' It is not his own, and he has not a right to keep it. God gave it to him. He has made him a steward. He expects him to do good with his possessions, whilst he retains them. If he obstinately refuses, God will take them away at his pleasure, and punish him for his avarice.
That man is pitiably poor, who has not learned the precious art of a benevolent use of his treasures. On the other hand, the man is truly rich, who generously gives of what God has given him, to bless and save his fellow-men. In this way, he derives a most refreshing happiness from his property. The very act of parting with it to promote the cause of Him, who, though rich, for our sakes became poor, rejoices his heart more than double the amount of unexpected acquisition. None will dispute this, who remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Yes, the man is rich in the best sense of the phrase, who does not trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God; who does good; who is rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate ; who lays up in store for himself a good foundation against the time to come, that he may lay hold on eternal life
. He is rich in prosperity, rich in adversity, in poverty, in death, in eternity. O ! bow rich, whose revenue is a revenue of souls, saved through his offerings and instrumentality, coming up through the gates of blessedness, each one another gem in the crown of his rejoicing. It is better to take this course of large, open beneficence, and live and give to do good, glorify God and save men, than to indulge in narrow selfisliness, go undone to the judgment, and sink down to hell.
We have frequently extended to us, Christian brethren, the privilege of aiding the missionary enterprize. The Lord Jesus Christ, the great Author and Head of this enterprize expects 119 to aid it, nor are we at liberty to withhold our aid. We cannot, without treachery to his cause, without a flinty insensibility to his love. What is emphatically wanted, is, that every Christian should feel the weight of personal responsibility, and realize that his prayers, efforts, and contributions cannot possibly be dispensed with. If any abandon the work, because they think it will go on without their aid, they are no better before God, than they would be, if all the world should follow their example, and the entire enterprize fail in consequence.
What a question is now before the Christian world. It is, whether the eight or ten hundred millions, who will be on probation at the commencement of the next century, shall enjoy the cheering light, and the unspeakable privileges of Christianity, and the bright hopes of glory through the cross, or come forward in moral debasement, the inhabitants of darkness, the victims of superstition, the slaves of beastly vice, the candidates of eternal woe.
This mighty question is distinctly before the present generation of Christians. The prayers and doings of the
present generation will decide it. What we, as individuals, do, or forbear to do, will help decide it. Before that time, our course will be run, our bodies mouldering in the grave, and our souls in eternity, reaping the reward of the deeds done in
CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN TWO LAYMEN ON STRICT AND
Mixed COMMUNION, in which the principal arguments in favor of the latter practice are stated, as nearly as possible in the words of its most powerful advocate, the Rev. Robert Hall. By J. G. Fuller. With Dr. Griffin's Letter on Communion, and the review of it by Professor Ripley of Newton. Boston: Lincoln & Edmands, 1831.
[Concluded from p. 118.)
The grand difficulty in the way of open communion, as hinted at the commencement of this article, is a difference of opinion respecting baptism. Our brethren insist--on the ground of the Apostolical communion and practice, the significancy of the two ordinances, and the general suffrage of the churchthat baptism is necessary, previous to communion. They also insist, that the members of our churches have not been baptized. Consequently they infer, as they think conclusively, that these members cannot with propriety be admitted to the table of the Lord.* The question now is, How shall this objection be obviated ? How shall the difficulty be removed ?
We see no probability that this difficulty will be soon removed by a general change of sentiment in our churches, and by our members becoming Baptists. There has been an expectation of this sort among Baptists—perhaps there is still; but we see no prospect of its speedy accomplishment. The difference of opinion between us and them bas long been a subject of solicitude and study; and for ourselves we can truly say, that the more we consider of it, the more we are convinced we shall never be Baptists. And so far as we know, our own experience on this head is conformable to that of our brethren generally. The relative strength and position of the two denominations, and the progress which each is making from year to year, also satisfy us, and we think may satisfy any one, that no general changes are to be expected.
* We have called the difficulty, as above stater, the grand difficulty ; but with many of the advocates of close communion it seems not to be the only one. There are those who insist that we must be not only immersed, but immersed by one who has been himself inmersed; and more than this, we must pledge ourselves to have no communion with those who have not been qualified in the same way. But close-communionists of this stamp may (we trust withoui offence) be denominaied ultras. They would not have communed with Roger Williams himself. They would have ercommunicated such Baptists as John Bunyan, and William Ward, and Robert Hall. Indeed, according to tbeir principles, it is not likely that there is now a Baptist in America (without excepting themselves even) who is suitably qualified for sacramental communion; as it is not likely there is an individual, who, ir his baptism were traced back, would not find the succession originating in one who had not himself been canonically immersed. * Origen says, “ Christ himself was baptized by John, not with that baptism which is in Christ, but with that which is in the law." Comment on Rom. vi, Chrysostom says, “It (the Baptism of John) was as it were a bridge which, from the baptism of the Jews, made a way to that of the Saviour. It was superior to the first, but inferior to the second." Homil, 24.
Besides; if our denomination is ever to become Baptist, it is scarcely possible that the change should be effected under the present system of operations. Entirely separate, as we now are, in our public worship and ordinances, and under the influence of a variety of causes tending to foment and perpetuate sectarian prejudices, how can it be expected that either party should make any great approaches towards the other?We agree entirely with Mr. Hall, that if the peculiarities of the Baptist denomination are true—if they will bear the test of examination--and if those who hold them are desirous to promote them; their past policy has been a miserable one, and it is high time they were pursuing a more liberal course. Instead of holding themselves so entirely separate, and keeping their brethren at a distance, they should seek the fellowship of other denominations who agree with them in holding the Head, and mingle with them as freely and fraternally as possible. In this way they may disarın prejudice, invite candid camination and discussion, and if the truth is with them, it will be likely to prevail. For ourselves, we earnestly desire to pursue a course such as this, and are perfectly willing to risk the fate of our Pedobaptist peculiarities on the issue of it. If these peculiarities are not founded in truth, the sooner we become convinced of it the better; and we sincerely desire that not only ourselves, but the whole Pedolyaptist community, may be placed in circumstances to look at the subject without prejudice, and give it as thorough an examination as possible.
But how shall we admit you to communion, it is asked, so long as we regard you as unbaptized ??—If our brethren are in earnest in proposing this question, we are very willing to confer with them on the subject. And we would with due deference inquire, why we may not be admitted, at least to occasional communion, on the ground proposed by Mr. Hall. Allowing that baptism should, as a general thing, precede the supper, is the connexion between the two institutions of such a nature, that the order of them may, under no circumstances, be changed? If the baptism of John was not Christian baptism, as was held by the ancients,* and is now conceded by the most intelligent