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Great Head has given to his Church of these later days, none stands out so prominently as the history of this Society.
Some of the means by which young men may become eminently useful in furthering the great objects contemplated by the four societies, suggest themselves as follows:
1. By the cultivation of personal piety. This is indispensibly necessary, since, without it, no guarantee can be taken, that the work will be perseveringly followed, and what is of more importanee, it cannot be owned or blessed of God. The multitude of sacrifices brought in ancient days by an unsanctified people, were rejected of God; the Almighty had not required such services from such a people.
The abiding influence of the Spirit of God, prompting to the acceptable ; erformance of those duties which we owe to him, and which it is cur honour and privilege to give, can only be with those who have renounced the world with its affections and lusts.
2. The dissemination of knowledge, appertaining to Missionary operations. This may be effected by means of a well-selected library, accessible on easy terms. The foundation of such a library, with a reading room attached, has been laid by the Parent Society, in London, as well as in the North Staffordshire Auxiliary, where the terms of admission to such great advantages consists in membership, which is obtained by a subscription of one penny per week, to the general fund of the Society. The delivery of lectures, by parochial or district clergy, is also another valuable means to this end. In London two yearly courses of twelve lectures in one, and eleven in the other year, have been completed, the majority of which have been well attended. Two courses are intended for the current year, one in the North, a second in the South, London Auxiliary. In addition to these means, periodical meetings of members of the Society to hear and give information gathered from the lectures, the library, and in the reading room, as well as from the publications of the Societies, are eminently calculated to create among the rising generation of young men that healthy tone of feeling which has been so long wanting among the laity towards religious societies.
A glance at the following subjects for conversation, arranged by the North West London Auxiliary, will shew the amount of important, useful, and interesting information, likely to be diffused by such means :
JANUARY.—The Missionary work a duty commanded in Scripture. The motives which should animate those who undertake it, illustrated in the conduct of the early Christians, and the blessings which result from actively engaging in it.
FEBRUARY.-The importance of enlisting the energies of young men in the Missionary work, and the benefit likely to result, with God's blessing, from a full development of the Church of England Young Men's Society for aiding Missions at Home and Abroad.
MARCH.—The spiritual wants of England and the causes which retard the spread of vital Christianity in this country.
APRIL.-The character and effects of heathenism and Mahometanism as contrasted with Christianity.
MAY.—The present state and condition of the Jews, and the prospects of the Missionary work among them.
JUNE.-Southern India—The character of its inhabitants; their superstitions, and the state of the Missionary work there.
JULY.-The state of the British Colonies in North America, and the history of the Moravian Missions in that country.
August.-Africa—The character of its inhabitants; their superstitions, and the state of the Missionary work amongst them.
SEPTEMBER.—The New Zealanders—their character and habits, and the history and progress of the Missionary work there.
OCTOBER.—The Holy Land, its former condition, and the fulfilment of prophecy, as shewn in its present state.
NOVEMBER.—The spiritual destitution of the Metropolis, and the mode of providing for the increasing wants of the population.
DECEMBER.—The capabilities which England possesses for extending the knowledge of salvation throughout the world, and the paramount claim which the Missionary work has upon British Christians.
EDUCATION ADVANCING IN INDIA. “Sir H. HARDINGE is very popular," writes Mrs. Micaiah Hill, from Berhampore. “His administration is likely to prove a great blessing to India. He is doing all in his power to promote education, and, by a rule published in the Government regulations, specifies as the most eligible candidates for public situations, those who have distinguished themselves in colleges or schools : this will be a strong stimulus to the youth of this country. The educated natives in Calcutta are so gratified by it, that they have sent an address to Sir Henry, signed by 500 of the most influential persons."
SCRIPTURAL EDUCATION IN IRELAND. THERE is a great struggle going on now for Scriptural education in Ireland-for freely offering to the rising generation the word of the living God. I consider it to be to the honour of the Established Church in Ireland, that out of 2000 Clergymen, in spite of all the influence and all the power that is on the other side, 1700 have put their hands to a paper, saying they will never join in any system of education, that does not allow them freely to put the word of the living God into the hands of the young. It may be in the will and purpose of God, to allow the scaffolding of the Established Church to be swept from under her; but I trust that, when they fall, they will fall not disgraced by having joined with Popery in keeping the Scriptures from the rising generation. Whenever they do this, in my judgment they will deserve to be removed as unfaithful, as insecure-as being Protestants in name, but ready to be, in practice, any thing for gain. In the Scriptural Schools in Ireland there are now 103,000 persons reading the Scriptures: and I am happy to say, that out of that number 33,000 are Roman Catholics; who, in spite of all the opposition that comes from their priests, and of any influ. ence on the side of the National Board, come and read that word which is able to make wise unto salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.-Bishop of Cashel.
BIBLE SOCIETY-MADRAS. The word of God is “the incorruptible seed;" and though, when scattered, it may lie buried in dust long out of sight, it “liveth and abideth for ever.” Its benefits, though real, are not always apparent or immediate. In this country, more than almost any other, the good seed needs to be sown by the living, anxious sower, and long watched and watered. As the sword of the Spirit in the hands of the preacher, the teacher, the affectionate sympathizing and prayerful friend, the Divine word has the greatest power.
Most of the correspondents of the Society, who have spoken of its beneficial effects, do it in this connection; but in some instances the human agency is less apparent.
Dr. H. Gundert gives the following interesting facts
“We also rejoice in real good wrought by God's holy word. A Mapla youth has been converted, less by direct teaching in our boarding-school-which he entered, he himself hardly knows how than by the incessant study of God's word ; which even now, in his sometimes adventurous excursions to preach to his countrymen, is his inseparable companion. Jesus, especially according to St. John -eternal life—the light shining in darkness—the love of the only. begotten,-these are the foundations on which his inward soul rests
- from which he derives the calm and joyful peace so necessary for those in his position.
“A Hindoo doctor was baptized in September, after an acquaintance with us of only two months, because, in that short time, he became so thoroughly acquainted with the word, which he read day and night, both alone and to his relations, that the moment he was enabled to break through his earthly ties we were constrained to receive him into full fellowship. He has out-grown our other Christians in his hunger and thirst after the unadulterated word. *** His wife has nobly followed him, learned to read since her baptism, and knows already many Psalms by heart.
“Also the Tamil youth, whom I mentioned last year as being prevented by his father from reading the Scriptures, has not been able to shake off the impressions received from them. He has believed in the Lord Jesus, and was baptized in December; yet he is not bound up with the word in the way in which the abovementioned are, by whose instrumentality, to the praise of God be it said, a spirit of more diligent and independent study of the Scriptures has been diffused among the older converts.”
The Rev. Mr. Hobbs writes
“I have no time to enlarge on the benefits resulting from the circulation of the Scriptures. It is the means in the hands of its Divine Author of converting and sanctifying the soul in this country, as well as elsewhere, and its effects are visible in the amendment of life and godly conversation of numbers amongst our people. If I could not get Bibles to give to our youths, I would break up my schools, and, like the Roman Catholics about these parts, discourage education rather than promote it. Faith and experience convince me, that the reading of the word of God is generally the only means of changing the mere nominal convert into the contrite, sincere, and consistent disciple of the Lord.”
The Rev. J. M. Lechler writes
“The benefits resulting from the distribution of the word of life are incalculable. The sacred Scriptures are the living principle of our Schools, and ofall those who enjoy Christian instruction in connexion with the Salem Mission : without them, nothing could be done. I take this opportunity to return my warmest thanks to the Committee of the Madras Auxiliary Bible Society for the liberal aid they have hitherto afforded us. All in connexion with us are desired to learn to read the word of God for themselves; and during the past year:
we had several additions to our Bible classes. Among these is a man who very lately cast in his lot with the Christians. He was convinced of the sinfulness of idolatry, and the truth of Christianity, by reading the Bible. He possesses several portions of Scripture, which he considers his most valuable property ; and he says he shall consider himself a debtor to the Bible Society, until he has in a measure made restitution for their invaluable gifts.".
FOR THE FIRST BLANK PAGE OF A BIBLE.
GEN. xxviii. 10–22.
Here, (as the place where Jacob trod,)
A sweet repose I take :
Adoring I awake.
To shew and do his will.
For, “ Thou art with me still!”
This, this “the gate of heaven.”
His Word to sinners given.
NEW YEAR'S HYMN.
And summer too has fled;
Are fallen now and dead;
Among the leafless trees,
Came sighing on the breeze.