« הקודםהמשך »
could not ascertain the precise period of bis conversion to God.” On this account he was afraid his profession was only formal, the result of human persuasion, and not the effect of divine grace on his heart. Perplexed and distressed on this subject, he, like Bunyan, desired that a miracle might be wrought to prove to his own satisfaction that he was a child of God. Conversing with a Christian friend, he stated what were his fears and desires. This friend argued and proved from the Scriptures that his desire was very improper; that we are to ascertain our conversion and our adoption by our spirit and our conduct. “By their fruits ye shall know them.” Convinced of his error, and judging of his spiritual state by this criterion, his fears were removed, and his peace and comfort were restored, He observes, that he could rejoice in hope that there was mercy even for him; and that it was his great concern to cleave to the Lord, and to surrender himself to him, as his prophet to teach, his priest to atone, and his king to rule over him.
From his evident piety, and constant attendance on the means of grace-his spirit of prayer, and delight in religious conversation, and in the society of the followers of Christ he was encouraged to propose himself, with two other per. sons, as desiring to unite with the church at Tintwistle. This he did with great seriousness and deliberation, and with much prayer; and he regarded churchcommunion not only as a duty, but a privilege. Having tasted that the Lord is gracious, and finding him his joy and treasure, he strove to walk not only in all the commands, but in all the ordinances, of the Lord blameless. The account he gave to the church of his experience being satisfactory, he was readily admitted, and walked with them in the fellowship of the gospel.
As there was something particular and heart-searching in the method of admitting persons as members of this church adopted by the worthy pastor, it may be useful to transcribe the questions which Were proposed to the candidate, and to which he was expected to give explicit answers. They were the following :
"1. Do you solemnly profess your repentance towards God, and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ? 2. Have you a sight and St se of the evil nature of sin? 3. Are you en ouraged to return to God by the expres$10.3 of his mercy in Christ to returning sinDers? 4. Is it the steady purpose of your
heart to forsake every sin ? 5. Are you resolved, through grace, to` labour after new obedience? And for the trial of your faith allow me to ask,--1. Do you heartily approve of God's way of saving sinners through faith in Christ? 2. Do you cast yourself on Christ for salvation ? 3. Is Christ precious to you? 4. Do you as sincerely desire that your soul may be sanctified as that your sins may be pardoned ?
• As you are now entering into churchfellowship with us,-1. Are you willing to enter into communion with us on the prin. ciple of mutual consent? 2. Do you resolve, through grace, to discharge the duties to which your church-membership will oblige you? 3. Will you guard against raising dissentions and harbouring an ill opinion of other members ? 4. Will you endeavour to keep up your communion by attending the ordinances? 5. Will you pray for the pastor and for the people? 7. As God may build you up into a family, are you resolved that whatever others do, you and your house will serve the Lord ? 7. As you know not what temptation may befal you, should your own case and the safety and honour of the church require the exercise of a holy discipline over you, will you bear it with 'submission and patience ? 8. Should circumstances render it necessary for you to apply for dismission from the church, will you do it in love, that you may depart in peace?”
To the above questions very suitable answers were returned; and henceforward he walked with the church in Christian fellowship, adorning the doctrine of God his Saviour in all things. IIis scriptural knowledge and gift in prayer, deep seri. ousness and consistent deportment, induced the church to recommend him to the work of the ministry. Though he has left no account of his views in reference to the ministry, there can be no doubt but the work of the ministry was what he cordially desired, and that when friends advised and Providence led the way he gladly engaged in studies preparatory to public labour. It is probable that he entered the new institution at Windsor, near Manchester, and received instruction under the late excellent Mr. Roby, whose sound scriptural knowledge qualified him for the office, in the latter part of the year 1811. Here he remained for two years, when this institution was new-modified, and the theological department was given up. He was recommended to the college at Rotherham, and, being admitted, he arrived there Jan. 18, 1814, and pursued his studies with diligence and perseverance. Being, from his age and previous studies, a senior he was frequently engaged
on the Sabbath in supplying for ab- eternal realities. She thus became a use. sent ministers, or preaching to destitute ful fellow-labourer in the gospel with her churches, and his labours in the gospel husband, and there is reason to hope conon these occasions were generally accept- tributed much to that measure of success able. Among the churches destitute of a with which his labours were blessed. But pastor was the new and small one at ere one year had elapsed she was brought Knottingley, near Pontefract, raised by to the verge of the grave by bringing the occasional labours of the minister of forth a still-born son, but was in mercy the latter place; and being then supplied raised up again, and appeared more hum. by the students from the college at Ro. ble, more pious, and zealous than ever. therham, he came occasionally, and was Her labours of love were not permitted to induced to accept an invitation to settle continue long. A widowed sister being among them. Here was a large popula. confined, and expected to die, of a typhus tion, but generally ignorant, and had fever, she hastened to render what assistscarcely even the form of religion among ance she could. Her sister recovered, them--the Sabbath being spent either in but she caught the fever and soon finisbed idleness or intemperance.
her earthly course. Prior to his acceptance of the call from Those who have experienced similar Knottingley, he had supplied and preach- bereavements can alone enter into the ed at Thirsk and Sutton-two interests feelings of her husband. He remarks, raised by the blessing of God on the oc- “ that his short union with her bad been casional labours of the Rev. Mr. Howel, the means of deepening religious impresof Knaresborough, and of the Rev. J. sions, and of making the Redeemer inore Jackson, of Green Hammerton, and the precious to his soul; and that during this liberality of Mr. Squires, of Osgoodby, period his happiness had been as great as Mr. Jackson's relative. With him resided he could expect on earth.” She died Oct, as housekeeper Miss Ann Pallister, the 15, 1818, in the 38th year of her age. daughter of a respectable farmer at Sessay, Religion only enabled him to sustain this near Easingwald, and who had been called loss. by grace to the knowledge of the Saviour
“ I felt,” says he, “ that God is a soverunder a discourse delivered by Mr. Howel.
eign ; but was convinced that the Judge of The ministers supplying the above places
all the earth will do right. The words adwere hospitably entertained by Mr. dressed to Peter forcibly struck my mind, Squires ; and his housekeeper rapidly •What I do thou knowest not now, but shalt grew in spiritual knowledge, zeal, and know hereafter ;' and I was enabled to say, holiness. With her Mr. Lees formed an • The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken acquaintance; and their desire at this away, and blessed be the name of the Lord.'” period was to devote their lives to mis. He adds, “ Since then I have often found sionary labours among the miserable and my heart ready to repine at this dispensation. perishing heathen. Impediments to the
ments to the Lord, forgive me, and help me to submit to accomplishment of their desire were found
all the disposals of thy providence !" to exist which could not then be sur- From the death of his beloved partner mounted. Among other reasons this dis- he never seemed at home at Knottingley; appointment inclined him to listen to the and, owing to the low state of the interest invitation from Knottingley, and to regard and other circumstances, he thought it his it as the will of God that he should settle duty to remove, whenever Providence and exercise his ministry there.
should open a door of usefulness in some Soon after his settlement at Knottingley other situation. Supplying the new chapel he married Miss Pallister, and found in at Dagley Lane, near Huddersfield, in the her a helpmeet for him in every sense. autumn of 1819, his services were acceptHe gives this character of her :-“ Herable, and he received a unanimous call to spirit and temper were most amiable; take the pastoral charge, dated Oct. 10, her piety eminent; and her liberality such 1819. After due deliberation and prayer as to do honour to her heart, and to bring he accepted the call, and commenced his glory to the Saviour and his cause.” Con. public labours among them on the first manding in her personal appearance, and Sabbath in January, 1820; and in this animated by redeeming love, and deeply place he continued to discharge the duties impressed with the value of immortal of a faithful pastor until called to enter souls, she entered the cottages of the into the joy of his Lord. poor, and by every means in her power. He found among his people some wellendeavoured to awaken their attention to informed and pious, with whom he could
maintain holy fellowship, and whose steady attachment to him and to his ministry greatly encouraged him. He was readily joined in every plan of usefulness; and as he was not a hireling, but a true spi. ritual shepherd, he shunned no labour to benefit his people, and to awaken sinners and direct ihem to the Saviour. Hence he visited his people and preached in the villages around constantly, thus making full proof of his ministry. He was instant in season and out of season, or at stated seasons, and at others, as opportunity occurred, in preaching the unsearchable riches of Christ.
In the course of Divine Providence he became acquainted with Miss Martha Wilson, the eldest daughter of the late Mr. T. Wilson, who had carried on a large cutlery business in Sheffield; and judging from what he saw and learned of her piety, age, and other circumstances, that she would be a desirable partner and helper in his situation, their acquaintance grew into personal attachment, and they were married, March 14, 1822. In her he again found one to soothe him in sorrow, nurse him in affliction, encourage him amidst his labours and trials; and to her he proved a kind, indulgent, and sympathising husband. Living in peace, and in the love and fear of God, they enjoyed as much domestic happiness, and even more, than falls to the lot of many of God's people.
For nearly ten years after his settlement at Dagley Lane he enjoyed a pretty good state of health, and his time was fully occupied in preparation for his public services, in visiting his flock, occasional preaching, and attending the committee meetings and anniversaries of the various religious societies. These anniversaries were to him means of the purest pleasure and the most refined joy. He loved God's house and people; and to meet with his brethren in the ministry on these interesting occasions any sacrifice was cheerfully made. While praying for the success of the Redeemer's cause at home and abroad he seemed to be in his element; he ap. peared a humble but a powerful intercessor. With what pleasure did he listen to the many eloquent discourses delivered, and appeals made, in support of the cause of missions! and he was ever ready to advocate them with all the ability he possessed.
While appearing healthful and vigorous he was subject to bilious attacks; and in the year 1811 suffered intensely by a
bilious and rheumatic affection in his face and head. He was wholly laid aside from his beloved work of preaching the blessed gospel, and was called to the exercise of the passive graces. But in the most violent paroxysms of pain he was enabled to submit, and displayed a high degree of Christian fortitude and patience. various means were employed to relieve him, but without much success. He travelled into the south along with his brother-in-law, and from this derived so much benefit as to be able to resume his labours in public. There were evident proofs in his ministry how much he had been purified by the affliction which he had endured. He was more meek, humble, and heavenly-minded, and dwelt more on the glorious work of the Saviour as the foundation of hope. Now Jesus was exhibited in the fulness of his compassion, in the riches of his grace, in the power of his arm to save to the uttermost; and he urged his hearers to flee to him, to embrace him, to live to him by faith and obedience, that they might live with him in his kingdom and glory.
From his appearance his people and other friends indulged the hope that he would be spared for years to come, an example to men, and a burning and shining light in the church. But in the inscrutable purposes of God such hope proved to be groundless. His former complaint returned, and he was laid aside, having preached three times on July 24, which was the last Sabbath he engaged in public service, and in reference to his own state of mind he reinarked, “ This was a good day.” He was confined to his room for nearly three weeks, and complained occasionally of a pain in his head. His conversation with his now sorrowing partner was very spiritual, dwelling much on the glories of heaven, and on the knowledge which it is highly probable the saints will have of each other in that blissful state. On the Thursday evening he engaged in his usual devotional exercise with his family; and a minister coming to his house, who was expected to preach for him the next Lord's-day, the conversation was very edifying. On the Friday he frequently referred to the heavenly state this being the subject of his thoughts and desires, and most probably expecting soon to enter there and associate with the multitude before the throne. On the Saturday morning he preferred having his breakfast in bed. The brother minister engaged in prayer, he desiring
the doors of his room to be left open that he might hear and join in the requests and thanksgivings addressed to God. Soon after prayer he gave a groan and expired, no one being at the moment in the room; but a niece being in the adjoining room heard the groan, ran to him, and, screaming out, Mrs. L. and the minister entered the room; but, alas! it was only to be hold a lifeless corpse. Thus suddenly terminated the life of this truly devoted Christian and minister, on the 13th of August, 1831, leaving a sorrowing church and a bereaved widow.
In summing up the traits of his cha. racter, it is manifest from what has been related that he was taught of God, and had an experimental knowledge of his own sins and depravity, more clear and affecting than what many experience. He seems ever to have felt a holy jealousy lest he should not be sincere in his repentance; and instead of coming for ward at once as a professor, he was cautious, and delayed until he was satisfied that he was the subject of a divine change.
Then he did not hesitate to tell what God had done for his soul.
He was naturally of a courteous and amiable temper. His open countenance was expressive of the kindness and affection of his heart. There was nothing for bidding or repulsive in his looks; nor was he cold, distant, or reserved to any who addressed him. He assumed no haughty airs, nor spoke in a tone of severity and harshness, but was gentle and condescending to inferiors, and respectful towards all. In him religion appeared lovely. There was no affectation, no attempt to impose on others by seeming to be what he was not. Sincerity was a striking feature of his character, and guile and hypocrisy were his abhorrence. He was an Israelite, indeed, in whom was no guile.
He felt keenly for the sufferings and afflictions of his friends, and often min
gled his tears and prayers with theirs on such occasions. He was hospitable, and ever glad to receive and entertain any of his brethren in the ministry. According to his means he was liberal to the poor, and ready both to aid and give them the best advice and counsel. How much his heart was in the success of missions has already been stated, nor were any exertions in his power to support them remitted until he closed his labours. As a Christian he lived in the exercise of faith; and it was his chief object to glorify God by a holy conversation.
As a preacher he was scriptural and experimental in his statements both of doctrines and duties. He did not attempt to make a display, but to commend him. self to every man's conscience in the sight of God. His aim was to win souls to Christ. He ascended the pulpit in the same devotional spirit he cultivated in private, and his seriousness showed that he felt the importance of the message he had to deliver. The esteem in which he was held among the churches where he occasionally laboured, was a proof that he was a workman that needed not to be ashamed, but knew how rightly to divide and exhibit the word of truth.
By his amiable and Christian temper, his humble and unassuming behaviour, his kind and friendly disposition, his candour and benevolence, his uprightness and integrity, his love to all good men, and especially to his fellow-labourers in the gospel, he secured and enjoyed in a high degree their respect and esteem. This appeared during his lise, but still more when it pleased God to call him to his rest. All the surrounding ministers felt they had lost a common friend and brother; and showed their sense of their loss by attending and conveying his mortal remains to the grave the house appointed for all living. “ The memory of the just is blessed."
SCRIPTURAL EDUCATION IN IRELAND.
A LETTER TO CAPT, J. E. GORDON, M.P.
SIR-In your last you inserted an article on the subject of the measures now under the consideration of Government, for the Education of the Irish People. Since I read that article, which I admired for its temperate and manly
tone, I have had put into my hands “A Letter from the Rev. James Carlile, of Dublin, one of the Commissioners of the Board of Education, to a Friend in London; containing some Remarks on the Speech of Capt. J. E. Gordon, M. P., at
Exeter Hall;" which I eapnot help re- have obtained surreptitiously, and treating garding as truly worthy of the notice of it as a document which the Board had your readers, and of the Christian public actually published ? Where was the kind at large. If Irish matters have been bound and honourable spirit of my Lord Lorton, up in faction and prejudice on the other that he did not interpose to protect the side of the water, I trust we shall never characters of absent individuals, and to have these detestable qualities imported prevent the introduction of an unpubinto this country.
lished document, which might, for aught I beg to inform your readers, in the he knew, have been stolen from a private first place, that Mr. Carlile is minister of scrutoire ? Have the members of the obthe Scotch Church in Dublin, and that he noxious Board forfeited the ordinary couris a man, in talent, character, and zeal for tesies of civilized life? In point of fact, the honour of God, yielding to no clergy. the whole weight of the guilt of that man of any community in that city. His proof-sheet lies upon my shoulders. The orthodoxy, too, is above all suspicion, even Tabour of compiling a book of school with Mr. Gordon himself, and he has long lessons from the Scriptures having, by been known as the enlightened and tried some means or other, devolved upon me, friend of Scriptural Education in the I am in the practice of putting the matter Sister Island. You very wisely suspend- into type before it is examined by the ed your judgment upon the measures of Board, that a proof-sheet may be sent to Government till you knew what they each of the members, and that so each were, and I think, when you peruse the may have full opportunity of considering inclosed Letter to the Member of Dun- it at leisure, before he be required to pass dalk, you will not hesitate for a moment his judgment upon it. While the first in concluding that he is chargeable with half-sheet was thus in the hands of the extraordinary misrepresentation of the printer, not adopted by the Board, some state of fact. The Letter may be had, of Mr. Gordon's zealous caterers on this I understand, of Hamilton, Adams and side of the water contrived, it seems, to
procure a copy, which was forwarded to A FRIEND OF IRELAND AND OF him, and which he used as the Record' SCRIPTURAL EDUCATION. describes.
« And now for the amount of guilt
which I have incurred in the preparation « MY DEAR FRIEND, I have read with of this proof-sheet. The facts are these : astonishment the statement made by Mr. -The authorized version of Genesis iii. Gordon, respecting the Board of Educa. 15, stands thus : 'I will put enmity be tion now sitting in Dublin, in his speech tween thee (the serpent) and the woman, at Exeter Hall, as reported in the Re- and between thy seed and her seed : 11 cord' newspaper. The whole statement shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt is ope tissue of misrepresentation ; and it bruise his heel. Mr. Gordon says the forms one of those portentous examples Hebrew is He shall bruise. How he disof which the present day is so fertile, of covers this I know not, as the Hebrew persons professing zeal for religion mani- does not distinguish between the neuter festing nearly as little regard to truth and and either of the other genders; but, at decency in prosecuting their measures as all events, that is a point in which he is the most unscrupulous of the opponents at issue, not with me, but with the transof religion. What will the English pub- lators of the authorized version. The lic think of Mr. Gordon, when they are Doway version stands thus:-- I will put told, that in the proof-sheet which he pro- enmities between thee and the woman, fessed to hold in his hand there was not a and thy seed and her seed: She shali single syllable respecting the Virgin Mary, crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait or any allusion made to her? Why did for her heel.' To which this note is apa he not read the note, the substance of pended—' she shall crush, ipsa, the won which he professed to give to the meeting man; so divers of the fathers read this in his own language ? I can tell the rea- place, conformably to the Latin : others son, whether he will or not it would not read it ipsum; viz. the seed. The sense have suited his purpose.
is the same; for it is by her seed, Jesus “ Did no individual at the meeting Christ, that the woman crushes the ser: protest against the unfairness of bringing pent's head.' Now, in the text of our before the public a proof-sheet, which the proposed lesson book, I wrote, 'It shall honourable gentleman must necessarily crush,' agreeably to the English version ;