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to me to arrive at Paris in time to attend the annual public meeting of the Bible Society. I can truly say that the meeting was in the highest degree interesting The character of the reports, especially those of the Ladies' and Mechanics' Society-the attendance of so many ministers of religion-the introduction of extempore speaking the feeling of warmth and zeal which seemed almost universally to prevail-left me no doubt but that a deep interest pervaded the minds of large numbers on the subject of the circulation of the Scriptures. Iafterwards visited many of the auxiliaries, great and small, of the Society in different provinces, and the hopes formed at the meeting at Paris were not disappointed. It happened to me to pass through one small village in a very solitary situation in the centre of France, where three associations had been formed -one of children, another of young women, and a third of the population at large. In this village, under a very pious and able minister, M. Duvivier, it was interesting to observe to what an extent education had gone hand in hand with the circulation of the word of God. Some of the children in the school repeated, as a Sunday task, not less than two hundred verses of the New Testament."

"Two collateral benefits of the Bible Society were particularly obvious in France;-in the first place, the truly valuable object which it supplied to many pious, active, and benevolent minds, which powers might have been otherwise unemployed; and in the next place, the rallying point which it afforded for really pious persons of all classes. It is difficult to say to what an extent the society has enlarged the efficiency, and strengthened the union of the religious body amongst the Protestants.

"Amongst the Catholics, even where the Bible Society has not been able to obtain any regular establishment by means of our agents, a large number of Bibles and Testaments has been distributed in the schools, hospitals, and prisons, and amongst the population at large. I have seen the Testaments of this society in various important schools; in the hands of the sick, and in the wards of the hos pital. I have known them carried to the infirm and the dying by those who are so emphatically and justly called the Soeurs de la Charité. I had myself also the happiness of distributing five hundred copies of those so kindly committed to me by the society, in a prison containing upwards of four thousand individuals. We cannot believe that these various gifts have been made in vain. Much of the fruit will be discovered only on the great day, when the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed. But in the mean time no man can follow the course of the Bible without perceiving the benefits resulting from its circulation. In one instance, I cannot but doubt that the conversion of a large body from Po

pery to Protestantism, in a city in the south of France, has been materially assisted by the operations of this society." After a warm eulogium upon the piety, talents, zeal, and religious orthodoxy of Professor Kieffer, Mr. Cunningham adverts to the distribution of the Apocryphal books. "It would be unjust," he says, "to deny that, when the question concerning the rejection of these books was first proposed to the Bible Societies in France, they almost unani mously declared their strong preference for Bibles with the Apocrypha. In the Lutheran, which is the smaller part of the Protestant Church of France, this preference still, to a considerable degree, prevails. But among the members and ministers of the Reformed Church, and especially those who felt the real value of the word of God, I was rejoiced to find how few dissented from your late resolution. And I feel assured that, when the question comes to be presented to continental churches in all its bearings, and the danger is shewn of thus commingling error with truth, their grounds of opposition will be removed; and they will feel it their duty to pursue the same course as that in which your society has so wisely taken the lead.

"It remains only with regard to France, that I should take the liberty of urging upon the committee the duties of the most strenuous and affectionate co-operation. It is impossible not to consider the general state of the Protestant churches as much advanced during the interval of five years when I before visited them. The political feeling of the Protestants appeared to me a good deal improved; and the government in general of France has done much to deserve their confidence and gratitude. The Protestants themselves seem to me much more sensible of the state of decay in their church; and are in proportion desirous of its restoration to life. It is true that heterodoxy of a very deplorable kind has, to a considerable degree, crept into the universities of that country. But I was often struck by observing, than when some of the clergy taught in those universities entered upon the discharge of their pastoral office, and it became their direct object to withdraw the profligate from sin, and lead the miserable to comfortto confirm the wavering, to meet the wants and wishes of our fallen nature, to assuage the sufferings of an awakened conscience, and supply a strong refuge in the hour of death, they have been compelled to desert their own ground, and seek, within the enclosure of orthodox and evangelical religion, the weapons of their warfare, and the means of consolation and of joy. I was delighted indeed to find some of those who had been instructed in the neological school, among the most zealous promoters of the truth as it is in Christ."

VIEW OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS.

FOREIGN.

PORTUGAL.The affairs of this country continue in an unsettled state; a fact which we learn, not only from events which occasionally transpire on its soil, but from the circumstance that the negociations respecting it are stated by the British cabinet not to be hitherto concluded; and that an armed force is still necessary for its protection. It is gratifying, however, to know that the presence of the British arms has been the means of preserving external tranquillity, and preventing the aggressions and bloodshed which must have followed the steps of an invading army; thus affording time for the existing institutions to become strengthened, and to obtain the public confidence.

GREECE. The intelligence from this unhappy country, we regret to say, continues to be of a painful kind. Lord Cochrane and General Church having drawn together such forces as they could raise, in order to relieve the Acropolis from the besieging Turkish army; a battle is stated to have been fought, in which the Greeks were defeated with considerable loss. The chief hope of Greece, under present circumstances, must rest rather upon the humanity and just policy of the great European powers, than upon her own unassisted efforts. It is understood, though nothing has officially transpired on the subject, that Mr. Canning has strongly urged both upon the Turkish government, and the leading European cabinets, the necessity of some plan for the pacification and liberty of this interesting, but long-oppressed country.

DOMESTIC.

The most important measures during the month have been the proceedings in parliament relative to the bill for amending the corn laws. The principle of that bill was to substitute importation at all times, under a scale of duties varying in proportion to the price, instead of absolute prohibition up to a certain point, and above it a sudden and almost free importation. This principle was almost unanimously adopted in the House of Commons, the chief difference of opinion being only as respected the price at which the scale of duties should commence. This rate, as proposed by Government, though not so low as the wishes, and we think the just interests,

of the great bulk of the people demanded, yet was lower than the landed proprietor considered due to their claims; (the farmer would be eventually bene fitted by the measure;) and every effort was made, and with some partial success, to elevate the scale. Still, the principle of graduated taxation, instead of alternate prohibition and ruinous importation, was recognized and acted upon. But in the house of lords not only have various alterations been made in the bill as respected its details, but the principle itself has been virtually set aside by the adoption of a clause proposed by the duke of Wellington. to prohibit the sale of warehoused corn till the average of wheat was sixty-six shillings the quarter. Government have in consequence most wisely abandoned the whole bill. This bill being lost, Mr. Western proposed to bring into operation, with modifications, an act passed in 1822, but which from the extravagantly high rate which it adopted as the minimum for importation, has happily never yet come into effect, nor could do so unless in a time of scarcity. This was opposed by Mr. Canning, who moved, and carried in the House of Commons, an amendment, substituting in effect the principle of his own bill, only with a limitation of its duration to May 1828; before which time the whole subject must again undergo ample discussion. The object is to admit all corn warehoused before the first of July next, to consumption at the duties specified in the bill which has been lost. The quantity which will thus be admitted, will be about 500,000 or 600,000 quarters. We trust that this provision will not be rejected by the upper house; for something must be done, and done speedily, to meet the just wishes of the public upon the subject. We regret however to state, that the opposition to Mr. Canning's bill has in some quarters been taken up rather in a spirit of party than upon any sound principle: indeed, the principle had been recognized by the late cabinet as much as by the present; and the bill was of their own composition. We regret also, that in addition to the positive evil of leaving the corn question in an unsettled state, some members of the house of lords appear to have urged their opposition in a spirit little calculated to soothe the public. One nobleman of great name

expressed his determination to defend "the rights of his order; as if the public had not as just a right to buy bread where they can get it most cheaply, as the nobility to let their lands to the best bidder. This attempt to enlist the aristocracy against the community at large, is as impolitic as it is gratuitous; for gratuitous it certainly is, no question of privilege being concerned, directly or indirectly, in the reprobated measure. It is simply a struggle between high rents and cheap bread; and it cannot surely be a question either to a man of humanity or a sound politician, whether in making an amicable compromise between the two, the latter object ought not to meet with a due share of candid consideration.

We are happy to state, that all Mr. Peel's bills for improving our criminal code are in progress through the legislature; and that he intends to add to his claims upon the gratitude of the country, by amending the system of church and fire briefs. The inconveniences and evils of the present system have been so often detailed in our pages, that we shall merely refer our readers for the present to the Indexes of our former volumes, reserving any remarks which may occur to us till we see the provisions of Mr. Peel's intended bill.

The affairs of Ireland continue to be discussed in parliament, but only in an incidental manner. Various partial measures of intended benefit have been proposed by individuals in both Houses, but scarcely any upon a large and national scale; unless it be the most unwise and injurious proposal of introducing the poor laws into that country, which, we need scarcely add, is not likely to find any countenance in either house of par

liament.

Dr. Lushington, in presenting two petitions on behalf of the free Black and Coloured population of the West Indies, entered at considerable length into a statement of their grievances; and signified his intention, if no measures were in the mean time taken by the colonial legislature for applying a remedy to them, to move parliament on the subject in the next session. He was ably supported by Mr. Brougham. Mr. Pallmer, the member for Surrey, argued for delay, and for leaving the whole subject to the colonial legislatures, as time was required for the removal of long fostered prejudices. Similar ground was taken by Mr. Wilmot Horton. Mr. Canning admitted, that there were certain evils attached to the existing system which legislation could not cure, and which must be left to the influence of time, and the progress of more liberal sentiments. But there were others which were perfectly fit subjects of enactment, and for which it seemed to him expedient to provide without much delay. It would be absurd, for example, to attempt by law to overcome the reluctance the Whites might have to intermarry with Blacks. But it was perfectly right that the laws should protect the property of the Black and the Brown classes equally with that of the White; and that the civil disabilities under which the former continued to labour should be done away. He saw no necessity for any great delay in proceeding to legislate for the removal of every thing unjust or oppressive in the existing institutions, as they respected the free Black and Coloured races. This, he trusted, the colonial legislatures would forthwith effect; but if not, such other means must be found for effecting it, as the wisdom of parliament might devise,

ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS.

PHILOPA

A. B.; G. S.; J. W.; W. G.; A Suffolk, RectOR; 2; A. S.; D. D.;
LAIOS; R. G.; and J. S., have been received and are under consideration.
The writer of the paper, signed R. G. on the number and chronology of the apocalyp-
tic beast, wishes to append the following to his remarks:

According to a note in Mosheim's Ecclesiastical History, the doctrine of transubstantiation was not introduced so early as the seventh century: but there are other authorities, (See Leger's History of the Vaudois, Centuriatores Magds., and Fleming on the Apocalypse) which lead to the conclusion that it was introduced about the year 666. The doctrine of purgatory, however, from the authority of Mosheim, was certainly introduced about this time.'

THE

CHRISTIAN OBSERVER.

No. 307.]

JULY, 1827. [No. 7. Vol. XXVII.

RELIGIOUS COMMUNICATIONS.

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"Mr. Henry William Ludolf was by descent a German, but, by his travels, acquainted with many other parts of the world. He was skilled in many languages, for which the family of the Ludolfs hath been famous in Germany these many years. He was a considerable statesman, and for some time secretary to the late Prince George of Denmark, a prince of peaceful and grateful memory to this nation. Above all, he was an excellent Christian; one that pierced through the outside of things, to the very soul and spirit of our holy religion, and, as this is what principally tends to recommend his pious Meditations, from which the extracts are taken, I shall mention some few eminent instances of his great regard to the inward vital power of Christianity. Our author was a great student of the two opposite principles of light and darkness; and a constant observer of the conflicts of these two principles in their different tendencies, to bear down the souls of men to earth, and sensuality, and selfishness, or to carry them toward God and perfection. Men setting up themselves for a ruler, and seeking to serve themselves as their main end, was esteemed by CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 307.

him the bane of all true religion. Mr. Ludolf hearing some talk of a project carried on in a certain country, for uniting several branches of Protestants into one religious form and way of worship; Why (said he) the most effectual way to bring about a union would be first to unite people to God; for then would they readily be united among themselves. But whilst that dividing spirit of self-love bears so great a sway in our ecclesiastical transactions, we cannot possibly expect any great and lasting effect from an attempt of this nature. What will it signify (continued he) to exchange one opinion for another, and one form of religion for another, if the corrupt bent of the heart remains altogether unchanged; and that conversion neglected, which is from darkness to light, and from the power of satan unto God?'

"His proposal for promoting the cause of religion in the churches of the Levant, plainly shews how his travels into those parts were improved. With views of this nature he went to Russia, to Smyrna, and Constantinople, to Alexandria, and other places. His learning and knowledge of many languages, he thought of no further value than as improved for the honour of God, and the good of others. When he heard a man cried up on account of his parts and learning, and his skill in languages, his usual answer was, But how doth he improve all this? What use doth he make of it? How many souls doth he bring over to Jesus Christ, by his languages, and his other talents? Whose ends and interests doth he seek? his own,

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or his Master's?' He seemed to think that the use of languages was not to make an ostentatious shew of them in a man's own country, but rather to spread Divine and useful knowledge to other parts of the world. With this view, after his travels from the eastern countries, he published the New Testament in vulgar Greek, to be sent into those parts. He was so intent upon the main scope of religion, that he looked upon all outside privileges and forms, as of little importance, compared with the Creator's being again glorified in the creature. He was very sparing in extolling one form of worship above another, and cared not to go about arguing people out of their usual way. By this means, he now and then incurred the displeasure of some in all parties. His esteem, however, was not lessened, with those who view religion in its essential goodness, as it was first established by Christ, and not as it was afterward modelled by men. If some churches did pretend to a more refined mode, and purer doc. trine, he would have that refinement and purity shine forth in the life and manners. The primitive faith, love, humility, meekness, self-resignation, and other Gospel virtues, he would have to be looked upon as so many inseparable companions to a form of sound words, and to an apostolical constitution.

"Thus was this good man for promoting a spirit of universal, impartial piety, in all nations; not only working out his own salvation, but diligent in contriving for, and endeavouring, the salvation of others.

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those that first established the Christian religion. Our modern Christians have dropped the harsher doctrines of mortification, contrition, compunction, inward sorrow, and spiritual combat, and all that belongs to their taking up a cross; and have modelled religion at last into a mode, wherein it begins to appear fashionable, and so may in time be liked by the profanest worldling that can be.' There is too much justice in this observation; and great need there is of the utmost endeavours to draw the attention of mankind more to the substantial and vital parts of Christianity." Extracts from the Writings of Mr. H. W. Ludolf.

"The interest of the church.universal doubtless consisteth in raising, enlarging, and adorning that mystical building which is called the City of God. As real Christianity spreads and improves, or shrinks and decays, the universal church may be said either to flourish or decline. This real Christianity lieth in following, as far as we are enabled by Divine grace, the steps of our Saviour, and copying out his temper and behaviour in our lives. True Christianity is a resemblance to Christ, the restorer of God's image in the soul of man, and the author and finisher of our faith. Now, the more there are that resemble Christ, the more fully is the glorious end of his Gospel answered, and the church universal is enlarged; and the nearer they come to their original, the more is the church adorned and rendered glorious.

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"Those notions of Christianity must therefore be looked upon as very low and mean, which would make the Christian religion to consist merely in outward forms of worship, or in a particular set of opinions; and in thinking that heaven is to be stocked out of one particular church only, or out of one sect and party of Christians. This false supposition hath betrayed many into very unchristian courses against those that differ from them

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