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In 1774, he left the Academy, and, after stopping a short time at different places, in July 1775 he came to Olney. It was in the spring of the following year, when the Association was held at Olney, that my acquaintance with him commenced ; and, from that day to this, all that I have known of him has tended to endear him to me.

I cannot say when it was that he first became acquainted with the writings of President Edwards, and other New England divines; but, having read them, he drank deeply into them: particularly, into the harmony between the law and the gospel; between the obligations of men to love God with all their hearts, and their actual enmity against him; and between the duty of ministers to call on sinners to repent and believe in Christ for salvation, and the necessity of omnipotent grace to render the call effectual.. The consequence was, that, while he increased in his attachment to the Calvinistic doctrines of human depravity, and of salvation by sovereign and efficacious grace, he rejected, as unscriptural, the high, or rather hyper Calvinistic notions of the gospel, which went to set aside the obligations of sinners to every thing spiritually good, and the invitations of the gospel as being addressed to them. Hence it was, that his preaching was disapproved by a part of his hearers, and that, in the early part of his ministry at Olney, he had to encounter a considerable portion of individual opposition. “By patience, calmness, and prudent perseverance, however," says one of his friends," he lived to subdue prejudice; and, though his beginning was very unpropitious, from a small and not united interest, he raised it to a large body of people, and a congregation most affectionately attached to him.”

He had a largeness of heart that led him to expect much from the promises of God to the church in the latter days. It was on his motion, I believe, that the Association at Nottingham, in the spring of 1784, agreed to set apart an hour on the evening of the first Monday in every month, for social prayer for the success of

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* His views of the gospel may be seen by a small piece, first published in 1783, entitled, “ The First Principles of the Oracles of God, represented io a plain and Familiar Catechism for the Use of Children.” It has gone through several editions,


the gospel, and to invite Christians of other denominations to unite with them in it.

It must have been about this time that he became acquainted with Mr. Carey, who then resided at Hackleton. Mr. C. had been baptized by Mr. (now Dr.) Ryland, at Northampton, on the 5th of October, 1783, and, after a while, joined the church at Olney, by whom he was sent into the ministry. Without reading any thing material on Christian doctrine, besides the scripture, he had formed his own system ; and which, on comparison, he found to be so near that of several of the ministers in his neighbourhood, as to lay the foundation of a close and lasting friendship between them. But to return to our deceased brother

In all the conversations between the years 1787 and 1792, which led on to the formation of the Baptist Missionary Saciety, and in all the meetings for fasting and prayer, both before and after it was formed, he bore a part. In 1789, he republished President Edwards's Humble Attempt to promote Explicit Agreement and Visible Union of God's People in Extraordinary Prayer, for the Revival of Religion. How much this publication contributed to that tone of feeling, which, in the end, determined five or six individuals to venture, though with many fears and misgivings, on an undertaking of such magnitude, I cannot say; but it doubtless had a very considerable influence on it.

In April 1791, there was a double lecture at Clipstone, and both the sermons, one of which was delivered by Brother Sutcliff, bore upon the meditated mission to the heathen.

His subject was Jealousy for God, from 1 Kings xix. 10. After public worship, Mr. Carey, perceiving the impression that the sermons bad made, entreated that something might be resolved on before we parted. Nothing, however, was done, but to request Brother Carey to revise and print bis Enquiry into the Obligations of Christians to use Means for the Conversion of the Heathen. The sermons also were printed at the request of those who heard them.*

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* If he published any other sermons, or any thing else, besides his “Cat. eclism,” and the “Introductory Discourse at the Ordination of Mr. Morgan

From the formation of the Society in the autumn of 1792, to the day of his death, our brother's heart and hands bave been in the work, On all occasions, and in every way, he was ready to assist to the utmost of his power.

In 1796, he married Miss Jane Johnstone, who was previously a member of his church. This connexion appears to have added much to his comfort. For eighteen years they lived together, as fellow-helpers to each other in the ways of God; and their separation has been but short. The tomb that received his remains has since been opened to receive hers. He died on the 22d of June, and she on the 3d of September following, possessing the same good hope, through grace, which supported him. A sermon was preached at her interment, by Mr. Geard of Hitcben, from Rom. v. 2. By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Mr. Sutcliff had been in a declining state of healtb for several years past. On the 3d of March, 1814, being on a visit at London, he was seized, about the middle of the night, with a violent pain across his breast and arms, attended with great difficulty of breathing. This was succeeded by a dropsy, which, in about three months, issued in his death.

Two or three times, during his affliction, I rode over to see him. The first time, he had thoughts of recovering ; but, whatever were his thoughts as to this, it seemed to make no difference as to his peace of mind. The last time I visited bim was on my way to the annual meeting in London, on the 19th of June. Expecting to see his face no more, I said on taking leave, “I wish you, my dear brother, an abundant entrance into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ !" At this he hesitated ; not as doubting his en

of Birmingham;" it has escaped my recollection. He, however,' wrote several of the Circular Letters of the Northamptonshire Association ; namely, that of 1779, “ On Providence ;%' of 1786, “On the Authority and Sanctification of the Lord's-day;" of 1797, “On the Divinity of the Christian Religion;" of 1800, “On the Qualifications for Church Fellowship;" of 1803, “On the Lord's Supper;"of 1805, " On the Manner of attending to Divine Ord!vances ;” of 1803, “On Obedience to Positive lostitutions ;” and of 1813 “On Reading the Word of God.”

trance into the kingdom, but as questioning whether the term abundant were applicable to him. “That" said he, “is more than I expect. I think I understand the connexion and import of those words--Add to your faith virtue-give diligence to make your calling and election sure—for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundanıly. I think the idea is that of a ship coming into barbour with a fair gale and a full tide. If I may but reach the heavenly shore, though it be on a board or broken piece of the ship, shall be satisfied.”

The following letter received from his brother, Mr. Daniel Sutcliff, who was with him the last month, will furnish a more particular account of the state of his mind tban I am able to give from my own knowledge.

“ From the commencement of bis illness, I found, by his letters," that his mind was in general calm and peaceful. •All,' said he, 'is in the hands of a wise and gracious God. We are the Lord's servants, and he has a right to dispose of us as he pleases, and to lay us aside at any time. Nearly a month before his end I went to see him—to see the chamber where the good man dies.

“ His mind was generally calm and happy ; though, as to strong consolation, he said he had it not. When something was mentioned of what be bad done, in proinoting the cause of Christ, he replied with emotion, 'I look upon it all as nothing : I must enter heaven on the same footing as the converted thief, and shall be glad to take a seat by his side.'

“ His evidences for heaven, he said, were a consciousness that he had come to Jesus ; and that he felt an union of heart with bim, his people, and his cause ; and Jesus had said, Where I am there shall my friends be. The heaven that he hoped for, and which he had in no small degree anticipated, was, union and communion with Christ and his people. He said, ' The idea of being for ever separated from him, appears to me more dreadful than being plunged into non-existence, or than the greatest possible torture.'

“ He often intimated that his views of divine things were far more vivid and impressive than they had ever been before. He

* They had been used to correspond in short-hand.



had a greater sense of the depravity of the human heart, and of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, as consisting in disaffection to the character and government of God, than at any former period of his life. He had, he said, an inexpressibly greater sense of the importance of ministers having correct views of the import of the gospel-message, and of their stating and urging the same on their hearers, than he had ever had before. He was ready to think, if he could communicate his present views and feelings, they must produce a much greater effect than his preaching had ordinarily done. "If I were able to preach again,' said he, • I should say things which I never said before : but God has no need of'me ; be can raise up men to say them better than I could say them.' He would sometimes say, • Ministers will never do much good till they begin to pull sinners out of the fire!

- To Mrs. Sutcliff he said, 'My love, I commit you to Jesus. I can trust you with him. Our separation will not be long; and I think I shall often be with you. Read frequently the book of Psalms, and be much in prayer. I am sorry I have not spent more time in prayer.' At another time he said, I wish I had conversed more with the divine promises : I believe I should have found the advantage of it now.' Others of his expressions were, 'Flesh and heart fail.--All the powers of body and mind are going to pieces.Shortly this prison of my clay must be dissolved and fall.—Why is his chariot so long a coming ? I go to Jesus : let me go-depart in peace. I have seen thy salvation.'

“A day or two before he died, he said, “If any thing be said of me, let the last word be, As I have loved


love one another.'

“ On the 22d of June, about five in the afternoon, an alteration took place : he began to throw up blood. On perceiving this, he said, 'It is all over : this cannot be borne long.' Mr. Welsh of Newbury being present, said, 'You are prepared for the issue.' He replied, 'I think I am : go and pray for me. About half an bour before bis departure, he said, 'Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. It is come-perhaps a few minutes more-heart and flesh fail--but God - That God is the strength of his people is a truth that I now see, VOL. VII.



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