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ly—that evangelical doctrine begins powerfully to impress the mind-that the law of the Most Holy converts the soul ;-and that the will of our Heavenly Father is the rule of our life, thoughts, and actions ! The blessing of God is, in truth, conveying saving health unto all nations. Thus the inspired prophet of old, foreseeing the establishment of the kingdom of Christ, exclaimed, “The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our Lord !"
“As the root of the Bible Society is holy, its branches will be holy also. This pleasing prospect excites in our minds the hope, that, with the assistance of the grace of God, every father of a family, firmly grounded in faith and love for the word of God, will soon be able, surrounded by his children, who wait for his edifying lessons, to begin them by saying ; " Come, ye children, hearken unto me, I will teach you the fear of the Lord.' May the Lord soon grant the accomplishment of this hope to the heathen, who, wandering in the darkness of ignorance, have not yet come to a knowledge of the truth, nor listened to his gracious voice !"
From the Report of the Proceedings of the Rendsburg Bible Society,
to the end of January, 1818. The Rendsburg Bible Society, organized on the 1st of March, 1816, still pursue their course without interruption; and are bound gratefully to acknowledge, that the Lord has blessed their feeble endeavours with success. They have great reason to deplore the loss of a noble Patroness, the Countess Julia of Reventlow at Emkendorf; who, at the close of the year 1816 terminated a life full of suffering, but wholly dedicated to the promulgation of true Christianity. Although this now glorified saint groaned for many years under the burthen of disease, and had to struggle with unutterable bodily pain, her spirit was active to the last moment of her 'existence, and her thoughts were constantly fixed on the one thing needful. Her capacious mind entered with wonderful activity into the great cause of the diffusion of the word of God, and promoted, even from a sick bed, by her example, and unabated energy, the diffusion of the Holy Scriptures to such a degree, that she has erected a lasting monument to herself in the hearts of all who are friends to the divine word, and has brought forth fruit which will remain. However great this loss is to the Rendsburg Bible Society, it would be an act of injustice, were they not gratefully to acknowledge, that, during the last year, many warm friends of the Bible cause were found ready to co-operate in its furtherance, by donations or annual subscriptions. Some small associations have taken place in Jevenstedt, and Flasmoor, and the clergy in several parishes have united with the school-masters to investigate the actual deficiency of Bibles, and to supply those who might be desirous of possessing them.
From the Rev. W. A. Voppel, Counsellor of Consistory, to the Rec
erend Dr. Schwabe.
Eisenach, January 27, 1818. The assembly wbich met in the Town Hall, for the purpose of establishing the Eisenach Bible Society, was very respectable and
numerous. The chief men of the town and the neighbourhood at• tended. Our General Superintendent addressed the meeting, ex
plaining the nature and importance of the object, and warming their hearts in its behalf; after this I reported what had already been done, directed the attention of the audience to the great want of the Scriptures in our country, and encouraged them to sign their names as subscribers and benefactors to the Society. This was immediately done, and not one of the persons assembled declined. The Honourable Privy Counsellor, Von Goechhausen, was chosen President, a nobleman of much zeal for the good cause ; but, as his great age begins to weigh heavy on him, gur worthy, vigorous, and very active General Superintendent was attached to him as VicePresident. All the members of the Committee are not only men of great respectability, but also animated by an ardent zeal for the important object. Thus, at length, the work has been brought about, which for years I have been labouring to accomplish. The day of the establishment of our Bible Society proved a great comfort to my mind; I know the importance of it to my country, as I am acquainted with the spiritual wants of the people, and their desire after the word of God. Very many among us are destitute of this precious book. A few weeks ago I inquired in our school, and there were 60 children whose parents had no Bible in their possession, much as they want it for their instruction. I am daily applied to, both personally and by letter, for copies of the Scrip. tures. The blessing of the Lord evidently rests upon the money you intrusted to me; I am continually receiving some addition to it from one quarter or another: thus, for instance, our funds were in'creased by the produce of a discourse which I delivered on the occasion of the bringing in of the first fruits of the harvest, which enabled me not only to distribute a number of Bibles, to children and adults, both in the town and in the country, partly gratuitously, partly at a very low rate, but also to present the grown up children of the working School of the Ladies' Association with a Bible each, on the day of the Jubilee of the Reformation, and to make a donation of a number of Bibles to a newly established Free School for
246 Progress of the Bible cause among the Roman Catholics, &-c. From a Correspondent in a Catholic Town in Germany.
February 6, 1818. Last month we had to cope with a fresh class of applicants for New Testaments ; namely, the soldiers, who were eagerly demanding copies, which, they said, they had such excellent opportunity of reading in their leisure hours in the barracks. No less than 200 applied in the course of two days. We had at that time no stock of bound copies, and yet were much concerned lest delay should cool their zeal, when, at the very instant, there arrived from Professor Von Ess, several packages, containing 150 bound copies of his New Testament, for which we had not previously made any particular request.
We likewise have profited by opposition. From every quarter applications are making for Bibles. People are desirous to know what may be contained in the forbidden Book, and many are made acquainted with it through their curiosity. The Jews likewise request copies, and we have dispersed to them upwards of fifteen. A Rabbi, whose attention I directed to the sermon on the Mount, causing him to observe the greater purity of the moral precepts contained in it, in comparison with the letter of the Old Testament, ran joyfully away, holding his finger upon the chapter, full of zeal to communicate this discovery to his disciples. May the Lord bless the scattered seed.
From a Correspondent on the Borders of Switzerland.
January 25, 1818. SEVERAL young Catholic clergymen are zealously engaged in the distribution of the New Testament. One of them could not rest till every family in bis parish was provided with a New Testament; part of the number he paid for out of his own purse.
From the Reverend William Milne.
Malacca, December 27, 1816. Having obtained permission to open a weekly lecture for the benefit of the Chinese, in the Temple of Ta-peh Kung, the place is sometimes full; and it would, I think, be gratifying to the members of the Bible Society to see half a dozen New Testaments taken out, and opened in this idol's temple by the heathen, in order to search for the text, or to look over the passage explained. This is usually the case. There are some who had received the Chinese Testaments two years ago. They bring them from their houses, and carry them back when the service is over. How great a blessing will the Bible Society prove to the world! How important its assistance to Missionaries !
The Epistle from the Yearly Meeting, held in London, by adjourn
ments, from the 21st of the fifth Month, to the 30th of the same, inclusive, 1817. To the Quarterly and Monthly Meetings of Friends,
in Great Britain, Ireland, and elsewhere. DEAR FRIENDS,
The love of our Heavenly Father has prevailed in this our annual assembly. It has united us in the fellowship of the Gospel, and has extended to our dear absent brethren. Under this influence, our confidence has been renewed, that the foundation upon which the righteous in all ages have built their faith and their hope, is for ever immutable. Notwithstanding our on infirmities, and the discouragements which surround us, we have felt the consoling persuasion that the Lord is still mindful of us. He who hath blessed us and our forefathers with many tokens of his Divine regard, is yet waiting to show himselfgracious; and by the Spirit of his Son is calling us to purity of heart, and to holiness in all manner of conversation. May we then consider the sacred duties which devolve upon us as Christians; the awful responsibility we are under as to a right use of all those gifts and talents with which we have been intrusted; and the necessity of becoming a more spiritually minded people.
In turning our attention to the state of the Society as it has been now laid before us, the proper employment of the first day of the week, the day more particularly set apart for public worship, is a subject that has claimed our serious attention. It is no small privilege to be living in a country where much regard is paid to this duty, and it highly becomes us to be careful that our example in this respect be consistent with the profession we make to the world. We desire that heads of families, and our younger friends also, may closely examine whether they are sufficiently solicitous to improve that portion of this day which is not allotted to the great duty of meeting with their friends for the purpose of Divine worship. To those who are awakened to a due sense of the eternal interests of the soul--and ob ! that this were the case with all-we believe that these intervals have often proved times of much religious benefit. Many have derived great increase of strength both at these and other times, from retiring to wait upon the Lord; from reading the Holy Scriptures with minds turned to their Divine Author, in desire that he would bless them to their comfort and edification ; and from perusing the pious lives and experiences of those who have gone before them. But we avoid prescribing any precise line of conduct, believing that if the attention be sincerely turned unto the Heavenly Shepherd, his preserving help and guidance will not be withheld.
Those of the class whom we have just been addressing, may sometimes feel that their faith is low, when about to attend their meetings in the course of the week, it may be, under great outward difficulties. These sacrifices of time, and opportunities of withdrawing from worldly cares, have been blessed to many: they have proved, in seasons of deep trial and discouragement, times of refreshing
from the presence of the Lord. The waiting, dependent mind has thus been enabled to put on strength to persevere in the Christian course ; and under the pressure of many troubles and perplexities, to experience an increase of faith in the merciful and omnipotent care of our great Creator. Be encouraged then, dear friends, not to neglect your meetings, however small; but to believe that by a diligent attendance of them, and a right engagement of mind therein, you will be strengthened to fill up your stations as faithful and devoted Christians.
In a well-ordered family, short opportunities of religious retirement frequently occur, in which the mind may be turned in secret aspiration to the Author of all our blessings; and which have often proved times of more than transient benefit. It is our present concern that no exception to this practice may be found amongst us; whether it take place on the reading of a portion of the sacred volume, or when we are assembled to partake of the provisions with which we are supplied for the sustenance of the body. On these latter occasions, may the hearts of our young friends also be turned in gratitude to God, who thus liberally provides for them. May the experience of us all be such, that we can adopt the words of the Psalmist, “ Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray."
In our last year's epistle, we had to remark the failure of some of our members in paying their just debts. We have been again deeply pained on finding that some disgraceful cases of this kind have since occurred. Whilst we lament the condition of such as have thus wounded their own peace, and brought condemnation on themselves, we also feel very tenderly both for the near relatives of these, and for their creditors who have suffered through them. In adverting to these cases, it is our solicitude tltat the misconduct of those to whom we allude may be a caution to others. At all times, but more particularly in the present depressed state of trade and commerce, it will be very useful for friends frequently to inspect into the state of their own property, to keep their concerns within
proper bounds, and so to confine their wants within the limits of Christian contentment, that should any unforeseen reverses be experienced, they may look back with feelings of conscious integrity. And we would especially recommend to friends of discrimination and sound judgment, in kindness and love to watch over their brethren for good. Great advantages would result from early, repeated, and private advice to young tradesmen, who from temporary success and inexperience may be in danger of exceeding their capital, and of imprudently extending their business.
Our sympathy is much excited for those, who after fair prospects, have, from a sudden depreciation of property, been subjected to many difficulties. We wish kindly to encourage such of these as have it still within their power, to a timely contraction of their domestic expenses. And we desire that their trials may be lightened by beholding in their offspring a disposition to industry and economy, and a willingness that their expectations should not exceed those