Page images

hearing in all places, and left a good that there was no work in her library impression. I spoke in Moree, Cooks-that, notwithstanding this allegation, town, and Dungannon, with much she was more “ fascinated with than debility of body, growing out of my the Christian Baptist, which, when incarceration and great physical la- she had opened, she could not lay bors in Scotland. I had, indeed, for down without reading an article or the time the appointments had been two." out, large and attentive audiences in It was offered as an apology for these places.

The Presbyterian young Mr. Carson, that, on demandchurches, I mean the Presbyterian ing a salary from the church at churches of Dungannon and Cooks- Tubbermore, the congregation, being town—were cordially opened to me, unwilling to accede to his conditions, while that of the late Alexander Car- he was intent on leaving them ; and son, of Tubbermore, was refused by having a call to Perth in Scotland, his eldest son, then pastor in charge from a church of orthodox Baptists, of a portion of his father's congrega- he was desirous of keeping bis reputation. The Presbyterian minister in tion pure from the imputation of any charge at Cookstown, Mr. Leslie, not partiality for our views. Be this as only freely gave me his house, but an it may, I only state the fact for the unrestricted license to preach the information of many brethren from word, as I understood it, “Not even Tubbermore, who have, on their withholding my views on the most arrival in this country, united with unpopular tenet—the weekly com- our churches. I have since learned munion”—which, by the way, he be- that Mr. Carson has left his father's lieved himself to be the duty of every flock much divided and distracted, Christian congregation. He heard and has gone to Perth to labor for me, as I learned, with much pleasure, the church of that town. not on that subject, but upon Peter's

Dr. Alexander Carson, it is alleged, confession of faith and the foundation spoiled his church at Tubbermore, as of Christ's church ; which, indeed, parents spoil a child, by being too was not acquiesced in, but which kind to it. He never exacted a salary elicited a letter to me from an in- from it. His son, intending to reform telligent Roman Catholic, a respect- it in this particular, made “his little able citizen of Cookstown, assuring finger heavier than his father's thigh.” me of his conviction by that discourse Still the young man is, no doubt, right of the errors of Popery, and his desire in the principle, however injudicious to become acquainted with our views in the application of it, that the shepof original Christianity.

herd should live on the flock which I learned that so orthodox was my he feeds. young friend Carson, that he refused By the way, it does not appear to the meeting-house at Tubbermore on be known in Ireland or Scotland that the ground that I was an “unconverted the degree of L.L.D. was conferred or unregenerate man,” and, I think, on Alexander Carson by one of our refused to hear me preach on the colleges—that of Harrodsburg. It same ground. His parents were but may be a hint to some of the colleges partially acquainted with my real got up by the Disciples, that they be views ; for, strange to tell, his father not too lavish of such honors on took it into his head that I was a strangers. They sometimes give a Unitarian-a mere German Neo- power to injure, by a factitious influlogist ; and so represented me to his ence, those who are not with us fully congregation. Mrs. Carson, a lady of in the work of the Lord. I willingly, pre-eminent talents and piety, as I am indeed, accorded to Alexander Carson informed, declared to a friend of mine the literary honor intended and in

dicated by the degree. His work on convened to hear me ; but from not Baptism alone merited such a dis- seeing me then, and not having genetinction ; for, I doubt not, it has been rally heard of my second appointment, conferred by other colleges on a hun- I had but a small congregation ; to dred other men who deserved less whom I delivered a short address in than he.

the Presbyterian meeting-house, and Though nowhere on my tour more went out to sojourn with one of my unfit to labor than in Ireland, because old pupils, Nathaniel Greer, Esq. of indisposition, I felt nowhere more now one of the most extensive farmers desirous of setting before the com- of that part of the country : his lady munity the great principles which also being the daughter of Mr. Gillis, distinguish us as a community. But merchant of Market-hill, with whom, for this work I was providentially when attending an academy in that hindered both by persecution and ill town, I had boarded. I felt quite at health. I felt grieved, especially for home with these intimates of my the sake of those few noble spirits youth. I found Mr. Greer's memory who have so long and so patiently replete with a hundred anecdotes borne their testimony for the truth more than forty years old, in which against strong and well organized he and myself had been concerned, hosts of opposition.

and of some of which I could say, Brother Tener assembled at his own Magna pars fui. spacious residence, in the midst of a I had many a question to ask, and rich variety of the beauties of Nature many a tale to hear, full of instruction and Art, a large company of his in the affairs and revolutions of human neighbours and friends, for conversa- life. The fortunes of the most distions on certain great matters, with tinguished families, beginning with whom I spent a very interesting day, that of Wm. Richardson, Esq. lord of being specially fitted for it by the the manor, formerly member of Parliamedical skill and laborious attentions ment, to whose family of three daughand dispensation of all manner of ters I had been for some time tutor restoratives by sister Tener, one of when 19 years old, passed in review the most accomplished, most excellent, before us. The details of the lives of and amiable of ladies, and one of the a score of my other pupils, many of most exemplary Christians I have them already dead, passed in rapid met with in any country. But I review before us.

With few exceptalked myself so fully out, that next tions, their lives and fortunes cormorning I had scarcely physical responded with their characters when strength left to walk into the garden at school. With much pleasure and without leaning on my staff.

information, we spent much of one The day of parting came. A por- day and two evenings in such convertion of that delightful society from sations. Scotland and Belfast left in the morn- Amongst my pupils had been the ing at its early dawn. In the course Rev. Mr. Robert Morrison, now of the day, accompanied by young minister of the large Presbyterian Mr. Tener and brother James Macrum, church at Market-hill, who heard a young gentleman of very handsome me preach in Rich-hill on Thursday attainments as a scholar, a writer, evening, 22nd September, and with and a poet, I bade a long farewell to whom, by special request, I spent the the household of faith at Moree, and evening of the 23rd at his own pleasant set out for the counties of Armagh and mansion, erected on the ground on Down. That evening we safely which his father's house stood when arrived at Rich-bill, where a large he was an elder of my father's conassembly had, on a former occasion, 'gregation.

I found my friend Mr. Morrison an. boyhood in Newry, I desired much to intelligent and well read theologian in spend a few days in it; but seeing the doctrines and history of his own that I had disappointed a large conchurch, a very estimable and social gregation assembled to hear me on gentleman. Our conversations on my own appointment, one of the most religion were practical rather than intellectual and respectable that bropolemical, and general rather than ther Henshall reported he had seen particular. He had made an ap- in the three kingdoms during his tour, pointment for me to speak to his own I could not prevail upon myself to congregation ; but my time would not hazard other disappointments by depermit, having engagements at Ches- laying so long as to call on one of ter (England) which forbade any them, save two ladies who met me in farther delay in Ireland. Mr. Greer the street, and simultaneously recogspent the whole of that day, the 23rd, nizing each other, though more than in carrying me in his gig over the forty years had intervened since last grounds around my father's farm and we met. With these I enjoyed a residence, the old stone meeting-bouse, tete-a-tete, a very agreeable interview and the surrounding residences of the of one hour ; and having transacted prominent members of his congrega- a few items of business entrusted to tion. But more than forty years had me with other persons, we hasted to carried them all away, except a few Carlingford Bay and Warren-point, members of their families, who still re- | where, the same evening, after a very side on their patrimonial inheritances pleasant ride and supper with brethor in their immediate environs ; of ren Macrum and Tener, I got on which class Mr. Greer himself was board a splendid steamer, laid me one, occupying the same house and down in a good berth, and awoke farm on which his father died some next morning in sight of Wales and 50 years ago. We had the sexton to Old England ; where, at 10 o'clock, open the old meeting-house, some 60 I safely landed, finding on the shore, feet by 40 ; and with many a melan-awaiting my arrival, brethren Davies choly, though somewhat pleasing and Woodnorth. The church not reminiscence, I surveyed the pews, meeting in Liverpool till afternoon saying to myself, “ Here sat such a because of some disappointment, we one, and there sat such a one ; but went to hear the celebrated Dr. Rafwhere sit they now?” The pulpit fles, Congregationalist, whose church, and the doors were new modified ; all both external and internal—the buildelse was in statu quo as it was when I ing and the people—is one of the heard him in April, 1807, deliver largest and the most splendidly worldhis farewell sermon to a large and ly in appearance in the city, in all weeping concourse.

the elements of earthly grandeur and On Saturday morning, the 24th, display. Yet Dr. Raffles is celebrated we set sail for Newry, via Market- as one of the most talented, eloquent, hill. This town was the only one in and evangelical ministers in England, the county of Armagh that had grown and has a congregation of some 1500 any since I last visited it. I stopped souls committed to his charge, as in quest of some old acquaintances. devout and attentive in appearance, I had to introduce myself to the only as well as bearing all the indications two I found in it. We arrived in of worldly consequence, wealth, and Newry at 2 o'clock, spent there some refinement, as any one which I saw four hours, and hasted on to Warren- in her Majesty's dominions, especially point, if possible to sail for Liverpool, amongst Dissenters. distant some 150 miles. Having I was much pleased with Dr. Rafa spent some two or three years of my fles' discourse. His pulpit, in the

It was,

centre of a circular house -- or, at the Apostle Paul. This incident goes least, so far from being under the far to justify my reasonings in excuse galleries, as to make easily visible for Dr. Raffles. Did not David say, and audible the preacher-his vene- 66 See now I dwell in a house of cerable silk gown, and still more saintly dar, but the ark of God dwelleth band, with a fine full-orbed face, and within curtains ?” The same inconhoary wig or locks—a clear, distinct, gruity, no doubt, stirred up the spirit and deliberate elocution, and a very of Dr. Raffles. Of what use is wealth chaste, though strong and forcible ac- if we dare not bring any of it to beaution-gave great emphasis and autho- tify the Lord's house, and our persons rity to all that he said. His text was when we worship there ? Why should a very sublime one, though I could men seek after wealth with such innot see its appositeness either to the satiable avidity, compass sea and land Doctor himself or to his audience. for proselyting gold and silver, if

, “ God forbid that I should when they have converted them to glory save in the cross of Jesus Christ, their own use, they must not, they by which I am crucified to the world, dare not, convert any of them to adorn and the world to me.” The sermon and beautify the vestments of the was, indeed, highly evangelical, well priest, the house of the Lord, or the studied, and arranged handsomely, solemnities of Zion ? Would it not and gravely uttered, and listened to be most incongruous and undevout for with the most profound and devout the rich Christian merchants in Liverattention by an auditory exhibiting pool to live in houses at the expense much devotion and heart-felt interest of twenty or thirty thousand pounds in all that was said. Yet there was sterling, filled with all the luxuries of so much of the lusts of the eye and the four quarters of the world and of the pride of life, so much worldly the age, if they dare not consecrate a grandeur and subserviency to the few thousand pounds to the Lord in style and customs of this vain world the form of painted windows, mahogin all that I saw, that no other text in any pulpits, crimson cushions, silver the volume of inspiration could have chalices, &c. ? They would then exstruck me with more dissonance and claim—Why should we dwell in marrevulsion than this one, to all that ble palaces, under vermilion ceilings, was visible and sensible in the pulpit recline on downy couches, and feast and orator, in the habit and decora- at tables covered with massive plate ? tion of both the sacred desk itself and Why should we clothe ourselves in its worshipful incumbent.

Egyptian linen, in French or English I was all the while forming excuses silks and satins ? Why adorn ourfor the preacher and for his congrega- selves with the gems of Margaretta or tion-such as I presumed would have the gold of Golconda, if we must been his justification to himself and worship in plain attire, and meet in to any one offering an objection- plain and unadorned houses on the especially as I understood he had de- Sabbath, to worship Him that created livered the same discourse sometwenty all these rich and beautiful things ? years ago, on the occasion of his hav

Do not our preachers call it " the ing married a very opulent, and, if I house of the Lord,” and do they not mistake not, a very beautiful wife. quote the temple that Solomon built

, On his first appearance after this and the rich presents of princes and auspicious event, such a text was kings consecrated in gold and silver most apposite to correct public opin- offerings to the house of the Lord for ion, and to justify himself for having his service in the sanctuary? And perpetrated a deed so apparently at why, say they, arraign the decent and war with the doctrine and practice of comely attire of God's ministers and


priests, seeing that Aaron wore men, officiating between God and golden mitre on his head that his man, or presuming to speak in his shoulders and breast were adorned name, are just as much a relic of the with the richest gems that ever adorn- dark ages, as much a figment of the ed a monarch's crown -and that his Papacy as the salt, the oil, the spittle, vestments were pictured in heaven, and the sign of the cross appended to and cut and adorned after a pattern infant affusion by the hierophants and fashion shown by God himself to of Rome, the blind devotees of grimace Moses in the mount ? The poor and and show. the humble maymeet in sordid houses, But I must leave this splendid or worship within tents and squalid meeting-house, its tasteful pulpit, its hovels, but we will follow a brighter accomplished and eloquent orator, its and more divine model, and give our large, attentive, and fashionable congold and our silver, our scarlet and gregation, and hie away to an upper our fine twined linen, to the Lord. room, even in Liverpool, where some

Were we Jews, and not Chris- fifty or sixty disciples, men and wotians, and did we believe in an men, have met to commemorate the age of shadows and adumbrations of sacrifice of the Son of God, to celespiritual and heavenly things, this brate his resurrection, and to worship logic might be heard with patience the Father in spirit and in truth. and considered with candour. We We had a pleasant afternoon with this live in the kingdom-of-heaven age of select band ; and after several exhorthe world, under a dispensation of the tations, we broke up and returned to Spirit. It is not logic, but a false Mollington to repose a day or two and deceitful rhetoric, that allures to before the general meeting at Chester bewilder and fascinates to deceive- -of which I shall give you some inwhich would nullify every precept of formation in my next. the gospel, and transform the Mes. As yet I have said little or nothing siah's kingdom, which is not of this about the condition of society in Engworld, into a Jewish commonwealth land, Scotland, and Ireland, and but -into a worldly sanctuary, alike un- little on the peculiar appearance and worthy of him that chose to be born state of these countries. These matin a stable, cradled in a manger, and ters I reserve till the details of our to die upon a cross ; and of God who personal labors and travels are ended ; is spirit, and not matter, and who can for which, I presume, another letter be worshipped acceptably only when will suffice. worshipped with the heart, in spirit, Affectionately your father, and in truth.

A. CAMPBELL. A Christian meeting-house ought to be plain and unadorned, save with simplicity and neatness. It ought to CHRISTIANITY AS A SYSTEM be amply spacious, well ventilated,

OF EVIDENCE. illuminated, and heated, every way agreeable so far as convenience, health, and comfort are concerned. All be- “ When I look at the blindness and yond this is a reproach on the religion misery of man, and at those appalling of Jesus Christ, a satire against its contrarieties which are apparent in Founder rather than a eulogy upon his nature — and when I survey

the his mission and character. If this universe all silent, and man without be reason and truth, sanctioned by instruction, left alone, and, as it were, the Bible, equally obvious and certain a lost wanderer in this corner of creait must be that all gowns, bands, and tion, without knowing who placed sacred vestments on the persons of him here, what he came to do, or


« PreviousContinue »