Page images

Tidings from Exeter. faith was strengthened and encouraged,

again; and with the summer before me, I

hoped that the dear Lord in his kind pro(A christian brother has earnestly requested vidence was about to shine upon my endea

us to insert a letter from which the fol- vours in the fruit selling, that I might get lowing extracts are made; in the hope a little before hand against the approachthat some of the family of God might be ing winter; but alas! all my hope in this led to sympathize with an afflicted bro- is dashed, notwithstanding all my tugging ther. The Lord grant it, is our fervent and striving, and that of my poor dear wife, prayer.-ED.)

who is very weak in body, and works and DEAR BROTHER IN THE BEST OF BONDS:

strives far beyond her strength, for she has, "In the world," (our dear Lord hath de: during the summer, bought fruit in the clared) his people shall “have tribulati- Exeter market, and in the gardens, and on;" and this is a truth which you, my Teignmouth, and sold it; but it proves too

gone down by the railroad to Dawlish and daily experience; and often in the bitter much for her strength, so that she has not ness of our souls we exclaim with the Poet: brother, I may in a measure say with Paul,

been able to continue it. Thus, my dear “My soul with various tempests tost,

bonds and afflictions abide me, and this Her hopes o'erturn'd, her projects cross'd;

the Holy Ghost witnesseth ;" and when in Sees every day new straits attend, And wonders where the scene will end,"

my right mind, and setting at the feet of But, adds the dear Lord "be of good cheer, flesh lusteth exceedingly for an easier path,

Jesus, I dare not wish it otherwise, but the I have overcome the world: in me ye shall have and for a smoother road; and oftentimes peace :" blessings on his precious name, he of late when

my poor soul has been shut up hath made peace, by the blood of the cross: in darkness and felt bondage, and being and when he is pleased to come and preach sorely tried with poverty in temporals, peace to our poor hearts, be we ever so far hath my poor soul felt with poor brother off in our feelings from God, we are imme- Job, to choose strangling and death rather diately made nigh in real heartfelt experi: than life; but bless his name, be knoweth ence by the blood of Christ : feeling that it the way I take; when he hath tried me I cleanseth us from all sin. I hope, my dear shall come forth as gold. Bless his dear brother, I can say with the poet:

nanie, he doth still remember his promise, “ Jesus, thy bloo:1 and righteousness,

I will not leave you comfortless. I will My beauty are, my glorious dress;

come again, and when he does come, it is Midst flaming worlds in these array'd,

all well in a moment. I am sure you will With joy shall I lift up my head.'

join with me in this, and say, he is worthy I know not how it may be with my dear to wear the crown; for he hath done all brother, but it is a day of small things with things well; he hath trodden the wine press me; I can enter feelingly into the prophet of the wrath of God for his redeemed alone; Micah's complaint; “Woe is me for I am as all we like sheep have gone astray; and when they have gathered the summer fruit, like the Lord hath laid on him the iniquities of the grape gleaning of the vintage : there is no us all; he hath finished transgression, cluster to eat; and my soul desired the first made an end of sin, and brought in everripe fruit; “my poor soul is necessitated to lasting righteousness for every poor bank, hang all her hope upon the unchangable rupt feelingly lost, feelingly helpless, and faithfulness of Jehovah in his covenant love feelingly destitute sinner, who, by and and mercy in Christ Jesus before the world under the divine leading, and power of the began. Oh, what an unspeakable

mercy 1 Spirit Jehovah, is enabled to believe. do at times see and feel it to be, that there Has our dear friend Mr. Skelton, called is such a one on whom God the Father can upon you? He has been at Brighton; havlook at all times with complacency and de- ing left the church at Aldringham, where light; one who answers all the just de- he lives at present. I hope the Lord will mands of his most holy and righteous law, direct his steps. I must inform you, that which I have wickedly broken in every we have been very highly favoured at Exepart; one whose righteousness exceeds the ter, with spirit-taught men of God who do righteousness of the scribes and pharisees, not shun to declare the whole counsel of which righteousness I lay my humble claim God as far as they are taught. At present unto, because it is freely imputed without we have a Mr. Darke, an old veteran, who is works. At present I am in great heavi. well instructed to speak a word in season ness, and feel much discouraged, by reason to him that is weary. I have found his of the roughness of the way in temporal ministry sweet and refreshing to my poor things. I think I may say, I never felt burthened and weary soul. more disheartened, having passed through write, dear brother, let me know how it is such bitter and trying things; during the with you in these things, and may you be last winter I sunk into debt which I could blessed of the Lord more and more, in hunnever have paid had not the Lord in much gerings and thirstings, in eating and drink, mercy moved the hearts of some friends at ing that which Christ says is meat indeed, Plymouth, to send to my relief; my debts and his blood is drink indeed. That is a being paid in a wonderful way, my unbelief most precious declaration spoken by our for the time was put to the blush, and little Lord, on that great day of the feast, Jesus

When you

stood and cried : “If any man thirst, let son of that description in Exeter: but, unhim come unto me and drink : and out of der the ministry of that blessed servant of his belly shall flow rivers of living waters," God, Henry Tanner, she was snatched as a and this he spake of the Spirit, that we brand from the fire; and the power of God may be led to drink deep. Ever your's, was so manifest in turning her from dark93, North Street, Exeter. R. ANGEL, S.S.

ness to light, that she was received as a proper member into Mr. Tanner's church.

Some envious and pharisaic persons Henry Fowler's Removal

raised a report that Mr. Tanner had received FROM BIRMING HAM TO LONDON. into his church a base character. This was

busily circulated to the injury of Mr. Tan(We have in previous numbers given vari-ner's character. One Saturday two minis

ous extracts from the Life of the late ters waited on Mr. Tanner to reprove him Henry Fowler. The following interesting for the impropriety of his conduct in resketch declares how, in the providence of ceiving such an awful character into his God, he was removed to the metropolis.] church, which was calculated to bring re

proach on the cause of God. Mr. Tanner The last two years that I spent in Bir- listened patiently to all they had to say, mingham, I used to visit Walsall fre- and casting his eyes towards the field opquently. I went there first to preach at posite his window, across which was a comthe earnest request of a number of persons mon footpath, he saw the obnoxious chawho had separated from the chapel in racter with a piece of serge on her shoulder, which Mr. Î. Grove preached for about taking it to her employer. He ran to the thirty years. When Mr. Grove died, the door, and called aloud, Molly! come in; people chose for their pastor a young man here are two gentlemen who want to speak who preached, as was said, very different to you. Molly entered with her piece of doctrine to what the people had been ac- serge on her back, and set it down in the customed to hear from Mr. Grove. Many parlour. Mr. Tanner then said, “Molly, of the people, therefore, left, and hired a these gentlemen are blaming me for relarge club room.

ceiving you into my church: they say you How far my testimony was blessed is have been a notorious character?! 'It is not for me to say; but I met a person in all true,' said Molly, ‘and I know that I am Reading, on my return from Bath, a few not worthy to be among the children of years back, who used to hear me at Wal- God.' Well,' said Mr. Tanner, 'I wish you sall, and he told me my testimony had to relate to these gentlemen your conversion been blessed to many. He mentioned one and experience. She then gave them a full person particularly, a common prostitute! account of God's dealings with her, and This reclaimed poor sinner went, after my they had not one word to oppose. Mr. removal from London, to join the church Tanner then said to them,' Find one in all where Mr. Grove used to preach. When your congregations that can give a better this woman was requested to give an ac- account of God's teaching than Molly, if you count of the means of her conversion, she can !' and they were perfectly satisfied. said, 'The life I have lived, and the sinful In August 1819, I received an invitation course I have followed, is generally known to preach at Bodicott, in Oxfordshire. The through the town; and these practices I morning as I was packing up for my jourfollowed, till I went, one night, to hear a pey, a letter arrived from London requestman by the name of Fowler, at the mud ing me to supply, the chapel in Conway hole ! (for that was the name these pious Street, three Lord's days. I had no time to people gave our preaching room,) where I consult my friends on the subject; but was struck with horror at the awful state when I arrived at Bodicott I wrote to LonI was in; and I could no longer continue don to say that I would supply them. At in those aboniinable practices, but wish to Bodicott I found but few persons that I be with God's people-not that I am worthy could be satisfied with, as partakers of the to be in their company. I have thought if grace of God in truth. I was as barren and this was the real work of God on this poor lifeless in my soul the five weeks I was sinner, I am amply satisfied for all my there as I ever was since I knew the Lord. harassings of mind and body, which were It added much weight to my trial, that sometimes too much for my frail frame. I must go to London in this miserable and But the day shall declare it.

barren state of soul, and have to preach to “God has, in all ages, manifested his rich a large congregation who had sat for years and sovereign grace to many of the worst under Mr. Huntington,and othergreat men, of characters; as Rahab, the harlot, the the latchet of whose shoes I was not worthy woman of Samaria, the woman taken in to loose. I was vexed that I had so hastily adultery, Mary Magdalene, and others; and given my promise; but now it was too late. in viewing these things, I am ready to ex. As I had engaged, I proceeded to London, claim with George Whitfield, 'Free grace when I had finished my engagements at for ever!

Bodicott, This was early in October. I must bere relate an anecdote, which I When I arrived in London, I was kindly receive from the mouth of a character of received by the friends, but greatly tried in the above description at Exeter many years my mind, from the bondage and darkness ago.-She had been as notorious as any per- of soul I had laboured under for many

[ocr errors]

weeks. Oh, how I grieved that ever I should blessed deliverances which God wrought have been so foolish as to make any en- for him, the abundant mercies manifestgagement to preach in London ! But I be- ed unto him, and the great use the Lord lieve the enemy had a great power over me, has made of him, you can but rejoice though I could not then see it. When that there are still here and there to be Lord's day morning came, I was surprised found such living witnesses of the mercy of to see such a number of people crammed God to poor perishing sinners. We can together, so that it was with some difficulty only this month make a very brief extract. I could get to the pulpit. I was obliged to But the work is to be brought out in twolift dp a prayer to my gracious God and penny parts, in order that the poorest of Father, that as he had often brought me God's family may be enabled to purchase it. through many difficulties, so he would be pleased to give me all I needed, both for

“ But now the time arrived for the Lord to speak myself and his people. I felt, indeed, the more powerfully to my soul, and to make this the

more plain to me, he suffered me to come into a most need of his helping hand; and he was gra- dreadful state, so that I verily wished I had never ciously pleased to grant to me; for as made any profession, for I really thought I had desoon as I began to pray, I found nearnessceived myself and others, and felt that I should draw of access to his blessed Majesty; and I was out a most miserable life, and die a miserable death, overwhelmed at a sight of his goodness, tossed about

under this temptation ; not a gleam of

o how my soul was which was made to pass before me.. My hope ; no sun, no moon, or stars, appeared for many text was, "Bring my soul out of prison, days, and no small tempest lay on me, so that ail that I may praise thy name.” This had hopes of being saved was lost; and I had cast out been my prayer for many weeks; but the (with my own hands) all my former hopes of condianswer was delayed till this time of great tional confort; had struck sail

, and committed mynecessity. Suffice it to say, I never found self to the merciless ocean, never again to think of so much liberty in preaching as at this ton to hear Mr. Drawbridge, (of Wellingborough) and time; and I was persuaded that the pre- he took his text from Amos iii. 12, Thus saith the sence of God was with the people, as well as Lord; as the shepherd taketh out of the mouth of the with myself: nor was I deceived, as several lion two legs, or a piece of an ear; so shall the


dren of Israel be taken out that dwell in Samaria in now with me can testify, from their own experience. I spent three weeks with this This sermon

was the first I ever heard that shewed

the corner of a bed, and in Damascus in a couch' people, and left them, in love and affection, up the deceitfulness of the heart. 1 felt truly I am with a promise, at their request, to see the man described, in all the legal workings and selfthem again. This event led ultimately to persevering endeavours of the flesh; this very much

deepened the wound : but when the remedy was my being settled in London."

brought forth, and the sovereignty of the Lord shown, Christian Reviewer.

I could not apply them to myself: so I returned writing bitter things against myself; and instead of

better I grew worse and worse, and instead of acting, "A Memorial of the Free and Unmerited Good faith, and taking God at his word, and shaking off my

ness of God towards John Corbitt, Minister trouble, as some tell us is our duty to do, I found unof the Gospel, Bethesda Chapel, Oldham St. belief

abounded, and God's word appeared all against Manchester. (See Advertisement.) Lon- me, and I could take none of it but such as sealed my

I should have been glad enough to don : Published by Houlston and Stone- have shaken these off, but I found I could as well man, Paternoster Row.

create a world as to take the comforts, or neglect the AFTER perusing a good part of this memo

Flowever, before I arrived home that night rial of God's goodness, we could not help it pleased God (who commanded the sun to shine out breaking forth, and saying—“ If ever the of darkuess) to shine into my heart, toßgive me a sight Lord did really convert å wicked sinner of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. from the error of his ways, and make a “This was done, first, by telling me (as christian of him, then John Corbittcertain- sensibly as with an audible voice)his' grace ly is one. We do honestly and really should be sufficient for me.' So strange, believe that no child of God can read sudden, and sweet, were those words-apthrough this memorial without being deep- plied to my soul, that I stood still to repeat ly humbled on the one hand, at the awful them ; when, to my further astonishment, workings of man's fallen nature; and re- these words came with redoubled power and joiced on the other hand, at the super effected a deliverance so surprising and joy; aboundings of that sovereign grace which ous, that the snare was broken and the bird turns the lion into a lamb, and the monster libérated. 'Look unto me and be ye saved of iniquity into a faithful and useful minis. all ye ends of the earth, for I am God and ter of Jesus Christ! We fully agree with there is none else.' Notwithstanding all I certain of our friends, who, (on speaking of had realized before of the Lord's goodness to the publication of some ministers' lives,) me, I had had nothing so sovereignly, sudhave said, they had better never have been denly, and powerfully applied before. My published; but such clear and powerful re-other changes had been gradual and almost cords of the power and grace of God, as imperceptible, but this was too powerful John Corbitt has given, should never be and plain to leave for the moment any sushidden, either from the church of God or picion; this was none other than the house the world, if we could help it. This account of God, and the gate of heaven to my soul. which brother Corbitt has given, is a BOOK I did not erect a pillar as Jacob did, but the OF FACTS : and although there are many deliverance wrought such a deep impression facts detailed which may be offensive to re-on my heart, that time nor eternity will fined minds, yet, when you get into the never efface.”


[ocr errors]

“But with the precious blood of Christ." pented, Cain repented, Saul repented, SUCH a theme is the delight of all the Judas repented, but it was all unto redeemed of heaven. Those who have, death-it worked wrath and condemnathrough grace, arrived within its por- tion in their natural consciences. Now, tals, and those who are travelling on- that repentance which is unto life is of a wards oppressed with sin, (and sorrow different kind, being the result of the Spithe consequences thereof) all vie with rit's operation on the heart, it proceeds each other in exalting the Lamb that from life, and is unto life ; it never misshed his precious blood, and surely my carries ; we often put self pity in its soul can, from a felt need of cleansing, a place; we only truly repent when we see felt need of purifying, say with one now a bleeding Jesus, by the eye of faith ; singing in immortal strains in the high when we are led, by the Spirit's mighty court of bliss

operation on our souls, to see the tragic Let the water and the blood,

scene of Gethsemane, to behold the spot. From thy wounded side which flowed, less Lamb crying out, under the immense Be of sin the double cure,

load of our sin; and to follow him to Cleanse me from its guilt and power.” Calvary, and there to contemplate over Peter, like the rest of the apostles, was his overwhelming sufferings : the Holy an experimental preacher of the gospel Father hiding his face to hear him cry of Jesus, he laid for a foundation the out, in all the intense agony of his soul, precious blood of Jesus, and exalted the My God, my God, why hast thou foratoning Lamb as the only way to happi- saken me? I say, and believe it is in ness and God, he insisted on a life and accordance with the word of God, we conduct becoming that gospel, by the only truly repent when we are thus led; teaching, leading, and indwelling of the that, and that only will ever lead a sinner Spirit of God, and such only would he to hate his sins. And if a mere outside receive as bore those evidences and marks garb of profession was to be torn assunder which he felt in his own soul - and by some hot persecution or other, how which was manifest in his conversation, few would there be of whom it could be 1 Pet. i. 13 -16. How very little do we said, they are walking with Jesus in find of that blessed spirit inculcated white. My soul trembles while I thus in our churches, where the truth in write, lest I should be found, after all, the letter is preached! Oh, where is destitute of that work I am here conthat spirit of love those bowels of tending for; but I would rather go all mercy ?-That holy longing for each my life long bowed down under a deep others good, which was found in the felt sense of sin, guilt, and bondage, and primitive church? Alas! alas! we find in the end find deliverance, than go on it not. But, on the contrary, there is in a blind presumptuous confidence, and beating and devouring one another, evil in the end prove only to have light in speaking, and envying and jealousy. my natural judgment; which light will be Such things ought not to be. Still there sure to go out in death, and leave its are a few names in Sardis which have possessor in eternal darkness; “Without not defiled their garments, they shall shedding of blood there is no remission.' walk with the Lord in white, emblem- Now, before sin can be remitted in the atic of purity, and of every believer that is court of conscience, there must be sin clothed in the righteousness of Jesus has felt; when the Spirit first takes a sinner a tender conscience, a heart made soft by in hand, he leads him to Sinai. I do the precious blood of Jesus. What a not believe that which many affirm, that soul-ravishing place it is to be in! Where sinners are drawn by love in the first mercy streams into the soul in streams onset; before any sinner can have any love of blood divine !

to God, he must first know, God; for There seems to be much darkness en- how can he love an object he has no wrapt about the judgments of many con- knowledge of. God is revealed in his cerning repentance, the work of the Holy word as a consuming fire,' as an angry Spirit in the soul. There is a legal re- judge,' and when the soul is first quickpentance and an evangelical repentance. ened into life, in such character he beThe former works in every one of Adam's holds God, as a holy and righteous God, posterity, the latter only in the posterity and himself as a vile and filthy sinner, of the Second Adam. We find Esau re- full of every thing opposed to God. Paul

VOL, IV.--PART XLV.-Nov. 1848.



I was alive without the law once, but prejudice of feeling towards you was rewhen the commandment came sin revived moved—and I felt persuaded that you was and I died, and the commandment which one of the seed which the Lord had blessed was ordained unto life I found to be preach the unsearchable riches of Christ.

and honoured with the gift of grace to unto death,' &c. Now, in such a solemn Therefore having thus opened my mind position, taken hold of by the thunders somewhat freely to you, and feeling an of Sinai, how can such a notion be main- union to you, I should feel obliged if you tained as that of being drawn by love would put in your next month's Vessel the out of the world into the fold of Christ ? following account of the goodness of God

towards me: I know it is all of the love of God. But

Last Sabbath Day, (October the first,) what they affirm is that the sinner feels it was appointed for me to baptise two of love working in his heart at such a sea- the Lord's dear family, (for the first time son. My reader, it is a delusion of the I have administered that ordinance,) at devil; it is not according to the word of Gadsden Row, Herts. God, nor according to the experience of Ivingho,) four years ago, after having been

I was baptised by brother Collyer, (of the children of God. And there is one a preacher of the gospel six years, but thing worthy of remark—all such par- never saw the importance of it, nor the sons, for I can call them nothing else, are blessedness connected with attending to it, violent opposers of experimental preach- to such an extent before. During the last ing. They say, oh, you don't want ex- cised because the Lord had not given me

four years my mind has been much exerperience preached, you want Christ that establishment of mind upon baptism, preached. But it is Christ only in the as he had favoured me with regard to head- not in the heart, or they would the general truths of the gospel. And, in not thus speak. How can such know looking forward to that day, it was my anything of the precious blood of Christ earnest prayer that the Lord' would

grant as a balm to heal all the festering wounds wanted--and

he was pleased to grant me

me that establishment of mind that I of sin ? A POOR WORM.

my request. I think I shall never for(To be continued, if spared.)

get the impression of mind, even from the

hymn we sung at the pool, and his presence Delivered out of the Mouth of the Lion. peared to me, the hardest task was to come,

felt in giving the address. Yet, it apto preach a sermon upon baptism ; this

being a subject that was in its infancy in DEAR BROTHER-I write a few lines to my mind; but I found the promise of you with a deep impression of mind so to Christ verified—'Lo, I am with you alway,' do; and to reveal a little of the secrets of while preaching from those words in Acts my heart to you. Since I undertook the ii. 41, 'Then they that gladly received the agency of the Vessel, I have been in com- word were baptised. From which I enpany with several ministers whom I much deavoured to shew, first, the persons who esteem, and who are public men in London, were fit subjects for baptism, as 'those that that have expressed some bitter feelings gladly received the word, 'in distinction towards you; and I began rather to reflect from those (like Herod) that only heard the upon the steps I had taken, lest I should word gladly; shewing, the sweet agreeexpose myself to censure for co-operating ment there is between the word preached with you in the sale of the Vessel ; but as i by God's sent servants, and the word rehad long appointed to spend a Sabbath in ceived in the heart in the exercise of living London, I thought I should like to hear faith. The second particular was the nayou; therefore with something of these ture of baptism, and the mode of adminisfeelings, I came last Sabbath week (Sep- tration. Thus í found the Lord better to tember 24th,) in the evening, as you are me than all my fears, as I do not know that aware, expecting to see you, a man partly I ever preached with more liberty; and forsaken of God,

and with a very few peo- after preaching, I felt my soul brim full of ple to hear you, but (after waiting at the the love of Christ, and the solemnity of door to speak you, to my great surprise,) what we had attended to, and I believe that when I entered the chapel, I found it the power of God accompanied his word nearly or quite full, so much so, that I had through the day so that it was a good day to set very uncomfortable on the free seat,

to many precious souls. under the pulpit; this rather, I confess,

My object in writing these few lines, and touched the pride and naughtiness of my their appearance in print, is, that some heart, to think that no one offered me a of the Lord's dear family, who are halting better seat. But soon after you began to between two opinions, relative to this orpreach, my heart began to get warm with dinance, may gather some comfort, and dethe precious truths you were enabled to rive the same blessing and favour. bring forward, that I could say my hearty

May the Lord bless you, and prosper you, amen to them, having lived upon them for is the prayer

of some years; therefore, they were new and

Your's affectionately, R. SEARLE. old to me; so that my pride was quelled- Apsley Mill, Oct. 7.

Read 2 Tim. iv. 16-18.

« PreviousContinue »