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remembering his fellow-Christians in bonds. Even the apostle Paul, when a prisoner at Rome, felt his need of the prayers of the Colossians—hence he made this request" Remember my bonds." Then how the persecuted saints in Madagascar need your prayers, who are so inferior to the apostle in knowledge and in experi


Remember, Christian reader, the bonds of your brethren and sisters in this distant island-the nature, the cause, the end of these bonds-the grace they need in them, and the glory they will bring to God, if they all endure hardness as good soldiers of Jesus Christ. And, whilst you remember these temporal bonds, oh, do not forget the spiritual bonds of their enemies; but pray that the Prince of Peace would set them all free. "Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the Word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you."



Ir is the essential prerogative and demand of conscience to have the mastery over all the passions, and appetites, and affections within us. It ought to be invested with the same authority over them all, that a master has over his servants. Most useful they are as servants; but in no case does the master lose sight of them; though when he sees them rightly and well employed, he will in so far leave them to themselves, as to let them work, without any new order from him, for hours together. And so it is that the principles of the conscience never hand the matter over altogether to the feelings of the heart. The office of the conscience is to maintain within us a perpetual will to do good; and to see that this is carried into execution. Often may it happen that the most effectual method of so doing, is to let the sensibilities have their course; to " weep with them that weep;" and, during the whole currency of some visit of benevolence, to give the mind over wholly to the movements and the demonstrations of a constitutional tenderness. Still conscience hath the priority; and it can shorten the visit; or it can recall its sensibilities, by a transference of the attention to other objects; or it can sit in judgment over the question, whether this flow of sympathy may not aggravate, as in some cases it does, the pain of the unhappy sufferer; and, to hide the irrepressible sympathy, it can take its sudden leave;—a flight of very opposite character from that of the feeling sentimentalist, who also flees from this scene of distress, because unable to bear the pain of his too delicate sensibilities; or perhaps overcome by the disgust and the discomfort of other emotions.

The following extracts are from one of Dr. Charters's sermons upon this subject: Compassion, improperly cultivated, springs up into fruitless sensibility. To enter the abodes of the wretched; to give them time, and thought, and hands, and money; -this is the substance, and not the shadow of virtue. The pleasure of sensibility may be less; but so is the danger of self-deceit that attends it. Death-beds, in the page of an eloquent writer, delight the imagination; but they who are most delighted are not the first to visit a dying neighbour, and sit up all night, and wipe off the cold sweat, and moisten the parched lip, and give easy postures, and bear with peevishness, and suggest a pious thought, and console the parting spirit. They often encompass the altar of virtue,—but not to sacrifice." "Extreme sensibility is a diseased state of the mind. It unfits us to relieve the miserable; and tempt





us to turn away. The sight of pain is shunned; and the thought of it suppressed. The ear is stopped against the cry of indigence. The house of mourning is passed by. Even near friends, when sick, are abandoned to the nurse and the physician; and, when dead, to those who mourn for hire;—and all this under pretence of fine feeling, and sentimental delicacy. The apples of Sodom are mistaken for the fruit of Paradise." Compassion may fall on wrong objects; and yet be gratified and applauded. One who has been living in borrowed affluence, for instance, becomes bankrupt. His sudden fall strikes the imagination. Pity is felt, and generous exertions are made in his behalf. There is indeed a call for pity; but for whom? For servants who have received no wages; for traders and artificers whose economy he has deranged; for the widow whom he has caused to weep over destitute children. Alms given from the impulse of compassion are like seed sown on stony ground, which quickly springs up, and as quickly withers. By repeated acts, the force of passive habits is diminished. Imposture provokes, ingratitude grieves, and time cools the heart."

The effeminacies of sickly sentimentalism which we are now attempting to expose, are certainly getting out of credit; and, instead of languishing with the dilettanti of a former generation, over the high-wrought and pathetic narratives of fiction, there is now a very general disposition to laugh at them. And even among our poets and novelists themselves, there is a firmer staple than there was wont to be, of the plainly and honestly experimental. We can instance more particularly the compositions of Miss Edgeworth, as the native produce of a mind that, with much sagacity and good sense, hath observantly looked on the features, and more especially on the foibles of our living society. Still, however, there remains enough, and more than enough, in our most recent books of entertainment, to exemplify the wide distinction which there is, between the ideal representations that bring the mind into a state of exquisite emotion, and those earthly and actual scenes in which we daily move, and which are brought around us to discipline the mind into a state of exercised principle. In these touching sketches that we have of the "Man of Feeling," by Mackenzie, the principal figure of the group-the sufferer in whom the author labours to interest every affection of our hearts-becomes the intense and absorbing object of contemplation; and every accompaniment that can distract our regards from him, or at least that can turn away our eyes in disgust from that scene by which he hopes to call forth the emotion of his readers, is most carefully suppressed; and by the help of a honeysuckle at the cottage-door, and a welcome of gratitude on the part of all its inmates, and a tasteful exhibition of that clean and orderly apartment, where the venerable father of some poor but pious family is dying, there may be heightened to the uttermost those sensibilities, which it is the proudest triumph of his heart to awaken; and the flattering unction which comes upon the soul of a weeping sentimentalist is, that with all the infirmities of his erring nature, there is surely nought, in a heart of so much tenderness, that is radically wrong. But the susceptibility of an exquisite emotion is one thing; the sturdiness of an enduring principle is another. We should estimate the worth of a heart, not by the power of its feelings and constitutional instincts, but by the power of that conscience which hath right of ascendency over them all. We should confront the owner of it with the realities and the repulsions that try the strength of human virtue in our ordinary world. It is easy to be floated along on the current of our

emotions; but in the warfare of moral discipline, we are often called upon to struggle against the current; and the decisive touchstone of character is, whether we have sufficient nerve and hardihood of principle to do so. It is not whether we can weep over those choice fancies, where the artist hath made all to harmonise with the emotions of benevolence; but whether, in weariness and in watchfulness, and among the occupations of an actual and a living scene,-whether, when this one emotion of benevolence is thwarted by the annoyance of many others, conscience can uphold its supremacy, and still charge it upon the will, that it shall keep by its purposes of well-doing;-whether after passing from the tasteful representation to the sober (and perhaps) ungainly realities of virtue, and when the scene for exhibition hath lost all its beauty, we can nevertheless give our hand to its business; and, in the midst of much to nauseate, and much to discourage us, it still abideth our uppermost concern, to do what we ought, and to be what we ought.

And we cannot leave the subject without expressing it as our strong suspicion, whether even our better works of fiction, while they have contributed so much to the delight of our species, have contributed ought to its improvement. The very best of them transport the imagination of their readers to some fairy land-a transcendental region, that lies far aloft from the affairs and the doings of ordinary life; and they who frequently indulge in the perusal of them, must be quite aware of the difference that there is between the sober hues of reality, and that preternatural colouring which tinges almost the whole romance and poetry of our modern literature. Our desire is for that which admits of familiar application to the houses, and the business, and the bosoms of men; and our dread of the works in question is not only that, in virtue of this remoteness from the every-day concerns of humanity, they are altogether useless, but (what is still more alarming) that, in virtue of their chief application being to the feelings of our nature, and not to its principles, the vigilance of the latter is lulled wholly asleep, while the former are kept in a state of indolent gratification.

So long as the slightest shade of uncertainty rests upon a question, we are not fond of dogmatising; but there is at least one deliverance upon works of fiction, in the safety and the soundness of which we feel altogether confident. Did we hear of any acquaintance, who had now bidden his conclusive adieu to them all, we should not have the slightest apprehension, lest either the moral or the intellectual of his nature should at all suffer by it. Did we hear, on the other hand, of his being much and greedily addicted to the perusal of them, we should tremble for the deterioration of both.


"True Christianity is a serious thing; few understand it, and still fewer possess it. More is required than that our reason should be taken captive by the Word of God-more than a mere systematic adherence to the faith of our fathers-more than a sober and circumspect walk of life. All this may be found in a man, and it may nevertheless be a question whether he does not still belong to those of whom the apostle says, 'Without are dogs.' Oh! the true way is a narrow way. There are two kinds of conversion, my brethren; one false, one true; one unto death, the other unto life. The false is outward, the true is radical; the false is alteration, the true is renovation; the false as when the serpent throws off his skin, and yet, in spite of his gay coat, still remains a venomous reptile; the true, as when the caterpillar dies, and from its tomb arises a new creature, with beauteous wings, bathing in the light of the sun, and nursed in flowers. Nothing availeth with God but a new creature in Christ Jesus,' conceived by the Holy Ghost, born in the manger of humility, and on the thorny bed of godly sorrow and repentance.”—Dr. Krummacher.


(Addressed to the Rev. Thomas Robinson, Vicar of St. Mary's, Leicester,
and Author of Scripture Characters.")



Mary Woolnoth sendeth to Mary Leicester greeting

MY DEAR BROTHER-I lend you the enclosed frank, but you must not keep it long. I shall want to have it back as soon as convenient, and as soon as you have time to put a good sizeable letter into it. I want to hear as much in detail as you please how it is with you in heart, house, and church. I hope you will be able to tell under each of these heads-All is well, considering where and what we are. With such a limitation I can tell you-All is well with us. Goodness and mercy accompanied us through the last year, and are still with us. Trials we have had and have-they are needful, they constitute one branch of our mercies, but it is the smaller branch, for our comfortable dispensations are more numerous, if I except the trials which arise from the naughtiness of my own heart.

I have a friend who has devoted himself to the ministry: he is not a novice. His judgment is sound, his experience extensive, his abilities I think considerable. He is something in my former way-has applied his leisure to study-his application has been great and successful. He is self-taught; and though not benefitted by school education, understands the Greek Testament well, and will, I think, very soon write Latin, as well as most of the young folks that come for Deacon's orders from the Universities. I know so much of the man as to have no doubt that the Lord is preparing him for His service, and consequently I expect he will obtain orders at the right time. And I as little doubt but from his first sermon he will set out an able minister of the New Testament. His present income is about £100 per annum. He has a wife and child, and thinks himself rich. But he has nothing before-hand but faith and hope. He will not be rash, but knowing whose he is, and whom he serves, I believe, if he saw a clear opening from the Lord, he would venture to leave consequences in His hands. Think of such a man, and if you should hear of anything suitable, let me know. He will not be very defective in literature, and in point of ability, knowledge, and divinity, will I believe be superior to most at the time of their taking orders. The best of all is that humility and spirituality are the most striking features in his character. I have been intimately acquainted with him from the time of my settling in London.

I hope I have written enough to coax you to send me an answer. My time is gone, and other things require my attention. I love you, and rejoice in what I often hear of Leicester. We should be glad to see you in Charles Square, and in Mary Woolnoth pulpit. Give my love to Mrs. Robinson, and all friends. Ora pro nobis. Allow me to stand upon the list among your most affectionate friends, as surely as my name is JOHN NEWTON.

Hoxton, Jan. 10, 1784.


MY DEAR FRIEND.-You certainly do not quite deserve a line, but I will get one ready because I love you. I have seen several people from Leicester of late; they all tell me Mr. Robinson is well, but none of them brings me a letter from him.

However, I believe you have thought of us now and then of late; and you will be glad to hear that the Lord supported and preserved us during the late commotions, and that we are at present safe and well. Indeed it has been a time of trial, I believe they who had most faith were best off; for myself I have reason to be thankful that I had some, though I wished for more. I seemed to be not greatly afraid for myself, but I was anxious for my dear, for Sally and Peggy, and our child just coming up from Northampton. Now I think faith, when it is hearty and stout, will enable us to commit and entrust our all to the Lord, as well as our persons. Mine is not what it should be; but I would be thankful if I have any, though but as a grain of mustard seed.

The papers which you read render it unnecessary for me to be particular. The scene has been dreadful, yet trivial in comparison of what was designed. If the Lord had not interposed seasonably, if help had been delayed a few hours longer,

*The riots of London under Lord George Gordon;

I doubt not but London had been in ashes from end to end. The sudden rise of the mischief, its rapid progress, and the immediate effectual stop put to it when in the height of its rage, were all extraordinary. The stop seemed like putting an extinguisher over a candle-almost instantaneous.

The populace were twice in our square, and threatened to come again, but were not permitted. We had two or three obnoxious houses near us; but indeed things were come to that pass, that all houses were equally obnoxious, and they seemed bent upon pillage and devastation without distinction.

Lord George Gordon's unhappy appointment of a meeting in St. George's Fields (the consequences of which I believe and hope he was not aware of), gave occasion to enemies and emissaries to mix with those whom he invited, many of whom I doubt not went in the simplicity of their hearts. But the better sort of people retiring gradually from the crowd, and the other sort increasing it, it was in a few hours changed into a very dangerous body, and gained strength and advantage by the strange panic which prevailed everywhere, so that the smallest parties of the rioters met with no opposition. Enough of this. It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed.

Mrs. Newton bore the shock better than I could have hoped. We find the Lord can give strength according to the day. The sight of the terrible fires kindled up every night was shocking and distressing; but we were upheld, and all pretty well now. What is yet before us we know not, but the Lord has given us good cause, as to praise Him for what is past, so to trust Him for what is to come.

I hope you and Mrs. Robinson are well. For some time past I have had but little leisure or relish for writing. You will hardly hear from me again for nothing. Letter for letter must be the terms. Your writing therefore will be the best proof that you are still willing to receive letters from your affectionate friend and servant, Charles Square, June 17, 1780. JOHN NEWTON.

(To be continued).



UPON receiving yours, we could not help falling prostrate before the Throne of Grace to acknowledge the great love wherewith the Lord hath loved you; and with praises, and thanksgivings, and hearts of joy, expressing our gratitude. I never think on you but with uncommon comfort. Dear Miss Fanny Cowper was then with us, and day and night prayed to the Lord to increase and strengthen your faith: she has at last laid down the burden in much joy and peace. O! my dear friend, were I to tell you the whole of her sufferings, and the wonderful supports she had, you would declare that God was with her of a truth: such patience and submission, and always happy, and used to say, "She would not change her condition for all the monarchs on earth; and more sure am I of my everlasting happiness than any thing I have." Unchangeable and unalterable was she in this frame for four months-there was no moment in which death could be named to her but she welcomed it with a smile. I kept, for my own satisfaction, a little account every day of her for that time; and when I have time to draw out a short abstract of the account of her I shall send it. May the Lord grant us to follow Christ as she has done, for a blessed saint she lived and died. Whole nights, when for her pain she could not rest, yet in hymns, and prayers, and reading, she would say, Of how delightful a night have I felt. Miss Cowper is still with me: it has not seemed like death amongst us: we rejoice upon my remembrance of her: all tears are wiped from our eyes: her last hours were all spent in prayer; and when her change came her countenance spoke her blessed; and I for a moment tasted her joy, for I thought my whole soul was so filled with delight it could have followed. She often would say, That sweet woman, Mrs. Bethel, I pray for her. I beg my most sincere compliments to dear Lady Cox and Mrs. Bethel, and believe me your most sincere and affectionate friend in the Lord Jesus,


S. HUNTINGDON. I find the world more and more a burden to me-pray for me, that I may no longer live to the desire of man, but to God.

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