« AnteriorContinuar »
Iture spread and power of religion YOU are requested to com- will be effected by the blelling of · municate, in your Magazine, the heaven on means used by Chrif
following letter to the good people tians to communicate truth to their of Connecticut. If my desire is brethren of mankind. Blessed be granted, I shall trouble you with a God that the attention of pious fecond, and perhaps with a third people is awaking to this important letter of address on the same sub- subject ; that their hearts are ject.
MINORIS. warming with love ; and their
hands beginning to communicate ! Friends and Fellow-Christians, | This is a happy omen that a graA S the season is again ap. cious God intends to enlarge the
A proaching in which you will limits of Zion, and bring many to be called to contribute, for the sup. rejoice, who are now ignoraat of port' of Missionaries to our new his glory. settlements and the Heathen tribes, It is the duty of Christians eveit cannot be improper to folicit ry where to pray, and to communi. your attention to so important a nicate liberally of what God has Christian duty. Those who love given them, that the gospel may be our Lord Jesus Christ, mult de preached to such as are ignorant fire the spread of his kingdom and of their own itate ; also to those, the conversion of souls. They who cannot procure instruction nor cannot expect that the benefits of bear the expenfe : but there is, in the gospel will be received without the present state of things, a greater Christian instruction ; neither can obligation on Christians in Ameri. they rationally expect, that, in this ca, than on any others in the world. day, instruments will be miracu- | Hitherto we have been free from lously raised up and sent abroad to those judgments, which render it preach the glad tidings of salvation. impossible for pious people, in fere The reasons, which induced infi- eral parts of Europe, to do much nite wisdom to take this method, more than bear their own burdens. at the first propagation of Chris. Although they are in the furnace tianity, have ceased ; and the fuel of personal affliction, their fervent
Vol. I, No. g.
feelings, which are occasionally I have been feeping, and made no communicated, ought to shame our effectual exertions to prevent the formality, and our want of love evil, to instruct them in real Chrif. to souls which are perishing. The tianity, and point them to the hofew poor Christians in Switzerland, ly and blessed immortality of the who by the revolutions in their gospel. country are principally despoiled of | Chriftians, you must meet those their earthly goods, are contribu-Heathen before the bar of your eing more freely than many of us, Redeemer ; and although you may who have peace, plenty, and pro- be saved by sovereign grace, will fess to be disciples of Christ. Must it not then appear, that thro' your God correct us also to make us neglect, they have failed of eternal consider our duty!
glory ; and will not your own The Heathen are placed near heaven be less blessed and glorious to us ; from the Christians of Eu forever, for having been so indo. rope they are at an immense dif lent.in your Lord's service ? In tance. Multitudes of them are seasons past there was an excuse on our borders, and within our for negligence in this duty, which national limits. These Heathen now fails. The subject of this have never heard the name of Je Christian obligation was strangely sus. If natural conscience, at passed over in silence ; but now it any time wounds them, they know I hath become matter of discussion not the physician and the healing and general information ; fo that balm; they look with uncertain ignorance and inattention to the dread on all that is beyond the duty cannot be an excuse. If grave ; they know not the gospel only the small number who read law of holiness, nor the grace this Magazine, were to give to fo which fanctifies and prepares for blessed and glorious a charity, what eternal life. We all have the | they might without any injury to fame father by creation, and they their common conveniences, it are children of immortality. He would furnish the means for more who died on the cross to comfort general exertions than have ever us with the joys of religion'under been made in this country. This the pains of life, and give us hope / obligation is on all Christians, 'exin death, hath commanded us to cept it be those in most indigent spread the joyful news from land to circumstances. The little sums of land, until it fills the earth ; but the fincere poor are an acceptable we have not done it, and scarcely offering to Christ, and plead with can it be said that we have tried him for she salvation of perishing to do it. Many from among us, | souls; and perhaps it is the instruchave poisoned the Heathen on our tion furnished by some widow's borders by the communication of mite, that he will deign to bless, our vices, and the vicious have for bringing a Heathen foul to a been diligent in corrupting, so that crown of glory, and the eternal many of them think the name joys of heaven. O poor but hapof Christian to denote the most py Christian, whose offering is unprincipled of men. This hath thus blest by sovereign grace, how been done by such as disobey the wilt thou delight to meet in etergospel ; while those, who profess nal blessedness, that soul saved to love the truth and to have re- through thy little bounty, and join ceived the benevolence of Jesus, I thy voice with his, in praises &
round the throne of God and the instruction, all purchased by the Lamb. Many such happy meet. blood of the cross, what have you ings there will be in heaven be done ? Doth your example, your tween those, who from distant | love and bowels of compassion reclimes are redeemed by the blood semble his ? Have you given evi. of Christ.
dence of a higher regard for the 2. Ye rich and affluent, an indul. | fouls of men, than for your earth. gent God hath favored you with ly emolument, when you have alabundance. You can give, yea ready more than sagacity can apply liberally, and not perceive your to the increase of human happiness, abundant fuperfluities leffened. unless it be in acts of liberali.y? Doubtless, your bounty supplies the Compare yourselves with the ditable of many who are poor ; and vine example, go and warm and while you compasionate the pover-melt your hearts at the foot of the ty of a few days, will you not al. | crois, and then determine your fo contribute to feed the souls of Christian obligation. men, with the bread of eternal Chriftians, think not to say these life? Is not the foul of more value heathen are never to be christianthan the body; and eternity | ized ; the obstacles are insurmount. more interesting than time? Con-able, they cannot be civilized and fider who made the difference, in therefore cannot receive the gospel. circumstances, between you and But are the obstacles greater than the perishing Heathen; who gave they were at the fall of man to the you plenty, and the blessings of exercise of any grace whatever. civilization ; and the divine instruc- yet wisdom and grace then triumtion concerning moral subjects, the phed, and the same wisdom and riches of redeeming love, and the grace are now on the throne. Are glory or woe of the eternal world, the obstacles greater than they were with which they are wholly un- in your own hearts? But you hope acquainted ? It was the distin: | that fovereign power hath renew. guishing, sovereign grace of Goded them by your fanctification. which made the difference. Are The obstacles are great, but the you not stewards of the divine promise is sure “ I shall give thee bounties, and can you answer be the heathen for thine inheritance.” fore the Lord, if you deny a lib. | The obstacles are great, but one of eral offering for the purpose of fav. the greatest is the coldness of our ing the benighted souls of your hearts and of our prayers on this heathen brethren ? Perhaps, you subject; and if these were remove profess to be Christians indeed, and ed we might trust in God for an to be warmed with the love of effusion of his fpirit, and the blesChrift ; if so, are you not warm- | fings of his providence to teach the ed with the love of fouls ? Coolid unchristianized tribes of men. er the love of your Redeemer ! Christians, think not to say we How he lived, agonized and died have given already, and not having that you might hear the gospel and seen the desired effects are discoube delivered from the curfe! Com- | raged. Remember, that this is your pare yourselves with his example. I perpetual duty, and to be often reIn poverty he went about doing peated ; a duty incumbent on your good, and being innocent he died whole lives. Souls will always be for the guilty ; while in affluence precious. Systematic measures and ease and gladdened with gospel and the perseverance of years are
necessary to communicate instruc- they are exposed to the seduction tion to heathen people. Say not of infidelity on one hand, and the then we are discouraged ; be not enthusiasm of ignorant pretenders discouraged while the promise en- | to religion on the other ; they are dures, but re nember there must be | gradually forgetting the religious means for the accomplishment of habits and truths received in their the promise.
youth ; and in many places becomBut it is not the heathen only I ing insensible of the benefits both who claim cur liberality. Perhaps for time and eternity, which flow the state of our new settlements is from establishments for pious ina higher call to Christian exertion ; struction. And who are those thus and indeed, we cannot overlook | situated ? They are our old neigheither of these objects with a pure bois ; our brothers, our filters, conscience. The American church our children. We were the inis placed in a new and interelting struments of giving them life ; we situation ; and there is a new and drew our nourishment from the more solemn obligation, than was same breasts ; our childhood and ever found on Christians before, youth were passed together, and in any part of the world, arising we called them our friends and our from the removal of our children dear ones By our mouths they into the wilderness, where many were first taught ; by our hands of them cannot enjoy the hearing they were baptized ; by our prayof the word and the administration ers they were consecrated to God; of ordinances, without our assist and doubtless we do sometimes yet ance at the present moment. It is pray for them ; but shall we rest estimated that there are in the will in this ? Ought we not to give evi. derness on the back part of the Uni- dence of the fincerity of our prayted States, between two and three er to God, by furnishing them thousand settlements which are un- | the means of instruction so far as able to support teachers of religion. is possible to our power ? It was The inhabitants pitched in a wilder- | their lot to go into the wilder. ness, on small farms purchased ness ; ours to remain on the old from the more affluent dealers in seats of our common ancestors, and new territory ; few of these afflu- under the bright sunshine of gofent people are with them ; some pel means ; and shall we not conof them, also, are regardless of sider their Gtuation? Shall we not religion, and indisposed to Chrif. help them to remember God; to tian doctrines in their purity. We seek and serve a glorious Saviour ; never can depend on the great land to form and organize churches; dealers to pay much attention to to obtain pious instructors and train this subject. These industrious in- up their babes, who are born in habitants, who have good prospects the wilderness, in the ways of after a few years are past, are now God? Reader, remember, that
struggling with the roughness of the by the Missionary services furnished . wilderness ; they are yet poor ; through thy liberality, thou art their numbers are not sufficient to communing with thy old neighbors, support a religious instructor ; mul- thy brothers and sisters and thy titudes of them have little induce children, in the things which perment to convene on the fabbath ; l tain to the kingdom of heaven. there is among them a great scar Say not in thine heart these people city of pious and instructive books; do not need such afhstance ; for though a few settlements may be cious and finful exercises in their wealthy, far the greater number hearts, in which they are perfearly are otherwise. Say not, that they holy, and perfectly finful by turns ; do not desire such asistance, for and that nothing more is meant by it is a mistake, and the desire of the doctrine of the Saint's permultitudes is ardent. There are severance than this, that all those infidels and haters of piety in the who are born again, though they new settlements, as there are in the will fall, every sin they commit, old, and these men will attempt to into a totally' sinful state, being ridicule all the means of religion ; nevertheless secured by the covebut believe them not, nor be deter- | nant of grace, Mall obtain eternal red from doing good by their sug- life.' gestions. There are valt numbers I beg leave to submit the followwho desire to hear, and they thanking considerations in support of the God for the opportunity. The former opinion, which I believe to labors of your Missionaries have be the truth. been greatly blessed, to call the at- It is evident that there is such tention of many thousand fouls, an opposition either of principles or many of whom are now rejoicing of exercises in every Saint as in in the peace and obedience of the the scriptures is called a warfare. gospel. In another letter I shall St. Paul, addressing Timothy, says, lay before you an estimate of the “ That thou by them mightest war Missionary services furnished by a good warfare." Also, “ Fight this state, and some further motives the good fight of faith, lay hold for your future liberality.
on eternal life.” Of himself he MINORIS. says, “ So fight I, not as those
who beat the air, but I keep under On the nature of the Saint's perfe
my body, and bring it into sub
Ijection.” In another place he says, verance.
“ We wrestle not (or not only) T T is admitted by all who are against fless and blood, but against
1 denominated Calvinists, that principalities and powers.” Again, all those who are born again will, in the Song of Solomon, Christ through the grace of God, so per- addressing the Spouse says, “What severe in a course of holy obedi. will ye see in the Shulamite ; as ence, as to obtan eteroal life in it were the company of two arthe coming world. But there are mies.” But certainly there can be two differing opinions concerning no warfare unless the armies, or the nature of this perseverance. the combatants, are on the field One, which seems to be the most together; and this is equally true ancient and general, is, that grace of a spiritual as of a natural waror holiness in the heart, once in. fare. If he exercises of the Saints planted, is an inamillible principle, I are all perfectly holy, or perfectly and is, in truth, the beginning sinful, then the existence of the of eternal life, though at first very one sort of exercises necessarily imperfect. The other is, that precludes the existence of the othgrace or holiness is not a principle, er ; during the presence of a holy but merely an exercise, and that, exercise, there can be nothing to as faints are imperfe&tly fan&tified oppose it, and when it ceases to in this life, there is, in the present be, opposition to it comes too late, ftare, a constant altcroation of gra- because by the supposition, it na