Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

ish infidelity; so that, even in remote districts of Bengal, one may have to meet the objections raised by Newman, or Colenso,

or Voysey. It is no easy thing to lead the Hindoo to such a belief in Christianity as shall merely touch the intellect,—to cause that truth so to penetrate the man's heart that he shall be willing to make all the terrible sacrifices involved in the open profession of his faith, would be a simple impossibility, were it not that the "weapons of our warfare are” still "mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

3. The character and the customs of the natives will present great difficul. ties in our way. The people--in Bengal especially—are remarkably unimpressible and lethargic. We may speak to them on the most solemn topics, and they will quietly smoke their pipes, and argue with us, or politely assent to all we say, and when we have left will very likely think little or nothing of the message we have delivered. The deceitfulness of the native character; the obsequiousness of the people; their apparent sincerity when in some cases they profess to be impressed with the truth, whilst their real motive is only the hope of gaining something out of us ; their want of manliness

, of moral and physical courage, of firmness of purpose and independence of mind—all these national characteristics present great hindrances in our way.

On the one hand, they prevent many from becoming Christians; and, on the other, they cause those who have professed the truth to manifest in too many cases a great lack of independence and vigour in the support and propagation of the Gospel which they have received. The condition of female society is also a great obstacle in our way. All women of the middle and upper classes are kept shut up in the seclusion of the zenana, and, until recently, they were

entirely beyond our reach. The women of the lower orders

, who are allowed to appear in public, do not generally like to come into the assemblies of men, and to face a foreign sahib; hence, for the most part, we have been only able to preach the Gospel to the men of India, and have been to a large extent deprived of the efficient aid which, in apostolic times, and in other mission fields in our own time, has been rendered by Christian women in the propagation of the truth. Our work is hindered also by the system of land tenure in Bengal.

or cultivators, are ground down by the extortion and oppression of their zemindars, or landlords, and others, so that they can with difficulty obtain a bare subsistence for

their families. The zemindar knows that if the peasants become Christians, they will refuse to contribute towards the celebration of his idolatrous rites, and will find in the missionary a friend who will endeavour to shield them against injustice, and he therefore exerts his utmost strength to prevent their becoming Christians, and all his resources of chicanery and perjury to deprive them of house and lands if they do take that step: Such are some of the obstacles to missionary success in India. One Fet remains, which is in some respects the greatest of all, the system

we will speak of in our next paper.

The poor ryots,

of caste, which

CHUCKIE'S FLIGHT.

A STORY OF DEANSGATE.

BY A MANCHESTER MINISTER.

(Concluded.) Now, when he was cast out, society, Driven from the church and the which appears so very complex to religious world, our friend Chuckie others, was very simple to him. went where we all go to,- where he There were two things he had to was welcome. He found in Deansfear, both of them appointed by God, gate those who would at least give - we are told so,-hunger and the him a trial. He was walking along policeman. Here was the problem. very sad and very hungry when he How can I stop my hunger and not saw a number of youths, not much be clutched by the policeman ? He older than himself, going into a had heard about earning an honest religious free-and-easy, a place where living, but he knew no one who sacred music was sung and drink would take him. The law which had supplied,- bad music and worse taken from him his father provided drink. no bread for the child. The charity One of these-an elder scholar which sheltered and would cure his who had just left a ragged schoolmother had neglected him. He met him, and, knowing that his must not beg, else policeman takes father was in prison, cried,him. He must not steal, else police- “ Come along, Chuckie, and we'll man takes him. He must not cut take care o’ye.” his throat or throw himself into the Chuckie was only too glad of any. water, else policeman takes him if one who would speak a kind word

, he can.

And yet he must live. and so he followed them into the Can he eat paving stones ? No; free-and-easy. The room was hot and even if he could the corporation and crowded. Most of the singers would object.

were, young; many of them were The lad wandered in bitterness Sunday scholars. The company among the streets, picking up now knew about Chuckie, and offered and then a crust. At length he was him some drink. Soon after this he weary and the day far spent. Eager lost his senses.

All was a blank till for any change, he followed a number he was startled by the flash of a of people who were going all in one policeman's lantern and a gruff, direction, and found himself at the “Now then, what are you door of a fine building. Would he here, young fellow ?” venture in ? He paused, looked, He opened his eyes in an open wondered, entered. But he had court not far from his own house scarcely looked at the inner splen- his body cold and stiff, and his mind dour of the holy of holies when a confused and sad. gentleman at the door spied him, " Move on now I tell you,” sait and said,

the law, Now, young fellow, turn out of Chuckie tried to raise himself this !”

He partly succeeded, staggered, and A little one had come to the church would have fallen, but the policeman seeking shelter and found none,- had pity on him and said, "Tak found rather a stumbling stone and care, Chuckie.” There are kind an offence. Around whose neck hearts as well as brave hearts under must the millstone be tied ? A a policeman's uniform. Stern rocki serious question this same for the hide within fountains of living offending church.

Chuckie was grateful for even thi

doing

water woman.

youp"

65

e kind sentence, and looked up which never moved, and a few tracts th hope.

left by an earnest missionary. This "How did you come here?” said was all, and yet she lived-lived a ne policeman. * Why don't

you

life of weariness and woe. leep in your father's house?”

But who knows not that even the *They gave me some beer at a poorest have a joy in helping those ree-and-easy last night, and I sup- who are weaker than themselves ? ose I was thrown out when I got | Besides, amidst surrounding wickedIrunk."

ness, she had remained pure and "O! that's it. But you know it's good, determined to starve rather gainst the law to get drunk.”

than earn

the bread of shame. Law again, thought poor Chuckie. Young and friendless, but a true I want to do something right, but

It was a hard struggle, but am always going against the law.” she flinched not. She toiled on till "You had better get work as soon morn, and then turning to Chuckie as you can,” said the policeman, she said, whose duty compelled bim to move “Now, my little fellow, how are forward on his beat.

So Chuckie, poor wee Chuckie, Better," was the faint reply. s again left alone with an empty Are you hungry?” stomach and starvation. In bitter- “ Yes, very.ness of spirit he ran along the street “Well, you shall have half my. at full speed, careless where he went dinner. I can't afford breakfast, or what he did. His foot caught but twelve o'clock is my dinner something slippery, and he fell on hour." ihe pavement, striking his head and

“Thank you.” cutting it open. He did not faint, And she kindled a few splints, nor even cry, but an awful pain took a small bit of coal which she rushed through him, and he shud- had picked up in the streets over dered. He was not long lying, night, and boiled a small pan which however, when a woman came, lifted contained seven potatoes. She then him in her arms, and carried him to held one red herring before the fire. her own room, a small apartment When the potatoes were boiled she up an old creaking stair. She placed put out the fire to save it till supper him on the bed, got some water and time, and then said to Chuckie, bathed his wound, bound it, and Can sit

you up when she had so done, she sat on a

in bed P"

“ Yes. small clog of wood and said,

“Well, here's your dinner.” She “Now, my little fellow, you be gave him four potatoes and the quiet , and you will soon be all right larger half of the red herring.

Chuckie noticed this, and said, Chuckie said nothing. He could “ You are giving me too many not sleep, and watched his good angel

potatoes. Here, take one back.” at work. It was about three o'clock No, no, my boy. You have on Monday morning, and her fingers more need of them. I see you are were busy making splints to light very hungry. But wait till I give men's pipes at beerhouses. By thanks to God.” working fifteen or sixteen hours she Whereupon she devoutly asked a could earn a shilling a day.

blessing, not mumbling over a few The room was cold and cheerless. inaudible words with a fork in one The clog of wood was the only seat, hand, while the other holds a cary. the bed was of straw, and had a few ing knife. When she had finished, old bags for sheets and coverlet. the two-the lost boy and his sav. There was one pan, an old clock iour-took the potatoes with grateful

again."

hearts. Resting a

Resting a few moments after taking her three potatoes and a fraction of a red herring, she turned to Chuckie and said,

"Have you any home?”

“Yes. I live at the other end of this street."

"I thought I had seen you. Have you any parents ?”

“Yes. But father's in prison and mother's in t' infirmary, and I have nowt to eat."

“ Where were you yesterday ?”

Chuckie told her his Sunday's adventures. She listened with a kind of sad smile. When he had finished she said,

“So the nobs wouldn't let you into their fine church | Well, it's a blessing Jesus is not confined to their churches and chapels. He comes as gladly to my poor

hovel as to the finest building in the world. But it strikes me if He came back again, and saw Christians warming themselves, and letting the poor die of cold, He would have some strong words to say unto them.”

Chuckie heard with amazement. He had heard his father and Tim swearing by Jesus, but that was as much as he knew about Him. But this woman spoke about Jesus as if she loved Him.

She resumed her work, but a thought had entered her mind, and amidst her toil she turned to Chuckie and said,

you

know who made you ?”. “No," said he.

“ At least I ain't quite sure.”

“Who do you think made you ?”

Well, I have heard it said as how the doctor as makes pills and such, makes babies also, and I suppose he made me some day when he was tipsy, for I feel very bad made. I wish he hadn't a-made me at all if he couldn't a-made a better job.”

She smiled a little, then grew sad.

No, my boy, God made you and me, and all the world, and He is very good and holy.'

«God! Where does He live po

“Oh, He lives far away in heaven, in a beautiful city where everybody is happy."

" And did God put me into Deansgate while He lives in a fine city Himself ?" “Yes, my boy."

Well, He is a bit selfish. He migłt a-put me where I'd a-got summat to eat anyhow.”

“ Hush! hush! my child. God is very good, and if you pray to Him He will send you bread and all you need."

“ Does God keep you a-workin’ at these ere lights, while He puts big ladies as ain't half as good as you in big houses P» “Yes, my boy,He has put me here."

Well, all I can say is, I think I could do things better myself.”.

“No, my boy. He doeth all things well,” and the woman went on with weary fingers and aching head and heart, trying to earn one shilling a day by fifteen hours' work, while my Lord Tom Noddy spends the same sum in two cigars.

Chuckie remained with his saviour. His mother died in the infirmary, his father was sent to prison for years, and, unless a poor young woman in Deansgate had had mercy upon him, the law

upon

the one hand, and the church

upon would have left him to starve, steal, and go to prison. She clung to the lad for many years.

But hard times came at last, harder times than usual, and there was no work for the woman.

Chuckie, growing lad, required all his wages in food. What was to be done? One evening when he came home she was weeping before the cold grate. She had no food. Chuckie sat beside her, and asked what was the matter.

"Nothing, Chuckie. I am only rather weak." Have you

had
any

dinner!" “Not much." (She had picked up a single crust in the court, and had eaten it with eagerness.)

the other,

• Do

as a

66

66

"I must get you food, if I steal it."

Hush, my boy, God hears you.

Well, if He hears me why don't He send us plenty of food ? I am sure you are ever so much better than them people as rides in carriages and such-like."

"No, no, my boy. I am only a poor sinner saved by grace.

There was something in her look and voice which awed the boy, and made him feel as if he could not speak. As usual, they knelt together, and she prayed God to keep them safe during the night.

Chuckie went quietly to bed very hungry indeed, but he knew that a good sleep would take away some of the hunger. At midnight there came good news to the pale saviour who slept on her pallet of straw; the angels carried her home, leaving

only a wasted body to witness against the shameful neglect of a Christian city.

There was a post mortem examination, and the verdict was, “Died from exhaustion caused by lack of food." Her body was buried in a pauper's grave; the angels and Chuckie were the chief mourners; but as for the great city, it rolled on as usual to worship the golden calf. Chuckie grew up to be useful and respected. He has since learned that under a great deal of false religious life there throbs a mighty heart of Christian love in this great city. He has himself joined a church, and will ere long be one of its most honoured members; but he never can forget how a pale woman in Deansgate died to save him.

“CLEAVE TO THAT WHICH IS GOOD."

(ROMANS xii. 9.)

BY THE REV. A. M. STALKER.

pens

are

Paul has scarcely written the words, “ Abhor that which is evil,” ere he

the command, “ Cleave to that which is good.” The same fervid earnestness glows in both injunctions. One we have considered. The other now claims our notice. We inquire I. WHAT IS THE

GOOD " HERE INDICATED ? “Good," in general, has been said to consist in “whatever increases our pleasure, or diminishes our pain ;” physical good' has been declared to be that which has either generally, or for any particular end, such qualities as

expected or desired;" while moral good“ denotes the right conduct of the several senses and passions, or their just proportion and accommodation to their respective objects and relations." As the "evil” we are to abhor was found to be moral evil, the “good” commended to us

the text is moral good. Its essence is neither more nor_ less than " that which is according to the mind and will of God.” Hence, we read, “ He hath showed thee, O man, what is good ; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"* Such is the good and perfect and acceptable will of God." + II. WHAT STATE OF MIND AND FEELING SHOULD

TO THAT WHICH IS GOOD”?-We are to “cleave" * Micah vi. 8.

+ Rom. xii. 2.

CHARAOTERISE

US IN REFERENCE

« AnteriorContinuar »