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PUB. AFF. Evacuation of Portugal by
RELIG. COM.-Introduction of Christianity
RELIG. INTEL.-British and Foreign Bible
Letter of Mr. Biddulph. Sermon, on
LIT. AND PHIL. INTEL-Oxford Cam-
RELIG. COM.-Rev. G. Herbert--Matt. xi.
East Quaker's Yearly Epistle..Jamaica;
PUB. AFF.-Lord Wellington, Fall of Fi-
Hymns: Christmas; Sunday after; Epi-
RELIG. COM.-The Triumphant Christian..
EXTRACTS FROM THE CORRESPOND- small advantage from these pieces,
ENCE OF THE FIRST PROTESTANT
MISSIONARIES TO INDIA.
(Continued from Vol. 1X. p. 738.)
Tranquebar, Jan. 3,1714.-" Hav-
• You will recollect the clamour which was occasioned two or three years ago by a similar publication of the Missionaries in Bengal.
CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 109.
whenever they come to be better known in India*.
"We continue, with all possible care, the translation of the Old Testament, into both the Malabarían and Portuguese languages; and, by the Divine assistance, we have finished the translation of the first Book of Moses, in both the said languages. labours by his heavenly blessing, May God Almighty prosper our and grant that his holy word, like an incorruptible seed, may be scattered among these nations, to preserve them from eternal destruction!"
"The children of our schools were increased to the number of ninetytwo: but some of them being taken off by death, they have exchanged this life for a better; so that the number of children of both sexes We hope they grow daily in grace, amounts at present to eighty-five. and that many at least will prove as salt among their brethren in India. They learn the sacred truths of scripture, not as a mere historical knowledge, void of spiritual life and affection; but as a doctrine, which (as the Apostle requireth) is according to godliness, and which must needs be attended with an experimental knowledge in faith and practice. This we speak chiefly with respect to many of our Malabarian scholars, Danes, not only in knowledge and who outstrip the Portuguese and probity, but also in prayer, and in meditating on the divine word.
"In the three last months, we have received nine members by baptism into the bosom of the Church; whom
We trust they continue to be printed and circulated by the Society. B
(as far as their advanced years, and in some a decrepit age, will permit) we endeavour to bring up more and more in the true spirit of Christianity, that so the image of Satan may be destroyed in the hearts of the Pagans, and the image of God be renewed in its stead.
"We have herewith sent you a short System of Divinity, summed up in thirty-four heads or articles. It is written on leaves, in the Malabarian manner, and we hope you will allow it a place in your library.
"As to our temporal concerns, our straits are now more pressing than they have ever been before; and if God does not become a present help in this want, the help of man seems very remote as yet, since no Danish ship is arrived, by which we might expect some relief. May the Almighty support and comfort us with his favour, especially when our enemies, by reason of those difficulties, do boast, that this work will come to nothing at last, and, as much as in them lies, endeavour to stop the stream of other people's beneficence. "We beseech you therefore, most worthy patrons, with all possible earnestness, that that helping hand which you have hitherto so piously lent to this work, may be also continued hereafter for our support and encouragement, in so weighty an undertaking particularly (since it is your endeavour, as well as ours), that the knowledge of Jesus Christ may be planted in the uncultivated hearts of the Heathen.
"May God Almighty preserve you by his divine providence, that you may long continue to promote the saving truth that is in Jesus!"
Tranquebar, Sept. 27, 1714."Those things which you judged necessary to write to us about the 24th of December 1713, did safely come to our hands upon the coast of Coromandel, the 8th of August 1714, where we received, with the profoundest respect, the counsels and paternal instructions you have been pleased to give us.
The usual present of books, toge
ther with the sum of 701. English money, collected by you for the benefit of this Mission, and transmitted for our assistance here, we receive with the highest gratitude; humbly beseeching the most gracious God to reward the bounty of the benefactors with a plentiful return of heavenly riches.
"As to what concerns in particular, most worthy gentlemen, the intimation about the commandment against idolatry, we have placed it in our catechism, page 16. But in such a manner, as to serve for a fuller explanation of the first commandment in the Decalogue. Besides this, we inculcate this precept against idolatry with all possible diligence, and render as contemptible as we can, the idolatry and polytheism of the Pagans."
"As to what relates to party-names, or distinctions, the Divine Wisdom, which is without partiality, has taught us to abhor them. Our scholars know not so much as the bare name of Luther or Calvin: but as for the name of Popery and Papist, it is every where known in India, by reason of the vast number of Papists who wander about in this country; being abandoned both to the grossest darkness and ignorance, and to the most scandalous vices and practices.
"When we ask our scholars, what religion they are of? They answer, we are Tschettiawedakarer; i. e. Christians bound to observe the truly divine law; the word law being taken in that comprehensive sense, whereby it contains in it both the Law and the Gospel. After all, we assure you that we allow of no partynames to be used, either in the Malabarian or Portuguese pulpit: and we design to be equally cautious in the books we shall happen to print*. "As it is no small grief unto us,
I should like to have had access to the letter of the Society to which this is a reply; because I infer, from the tenor of the reply, that it must have been a model of christian candour and charity. Some members of the Society might peruse it with profit.