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For themselves the Editors have no favours to implore, nor the displeasure of any to deprecate; and had it not been from regard to the respectability of the denomination, and the interests of the Widows, they would not have noticed the puerile attempts of those who have sought, though in vain, to injure the Magazine, and who have employed their influence to support other periodical works, from which the denomination has derived neither credit nor assistance.
The Editors are apprehensive that some of our ministers, who consider themselves exclusively Calvinists, neglect to recommend the Magazine to their congregations. To such they have only to say, that if an inflexible adherence to the principles of the confession of faith adopted by the whole body of the Particular Baptist Churches in 1689 will not approve itself to their judgment, it is no wonder they have been displeased with the work them. selves, and have spoken unfavourably of it to others.
As the future usefulness of the publication will greatly depend upon the assistance of the leading persons among our churches, the Editors will be obliged if they will transmit articles suitable for the Magazine, properly attested to the Publisher, as they cannot attend to anonymous statements, either of Intelligence, Obituaries, or Reviews. They pledge themselves that the most prompt and friendly attentions shall be paid to such communi
The Editors again most cordially invite the co-operation of those literary persons who have not yet assisted them, by contributing to supply matter for the Magazine. They see no reason why this work, according to the number of its pages and its price, should not class in the estimation of unprejudiced and competent judges among the most respectable of the religious periodical publications.
To those kind correspondents whose friendship has been constant and unvarying, the Editors, in the name of the Proprietors, and on behalf of the grateful and worthy females who share the profits of the work, present their most affectionate thanks, whilst they ardently entreat the continuance of their help. And looking forward to future years, they cannot but indulge the pleasing anticipation, that the Magazine will continue to be not only a source of instruction and pleasure to the churches of the denomination, and the chronicle of its historical facts, but a means also of promoting the increase and prosperity of the cause of Christ throughout the world.
The Editors conclude by earnestly saying to all the Readers of the Magazine, "We beseech you, therefore, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that you strive together with us in your prayers to God for us."
JANUARY, 1823. .
MEMOIR OF THE REV. JOSEPHI PHILLIPS,
LATE MISSIONARY TO THE ISLAND OF JAVA.
men that 66
THE spirit which has been manifested for extending the knowledge of the gospel of Christ to heathen lands during the last thirty years, has called forth a new class of men into the service of the church; or if not altogether of another description from ordinary ministers, yet, certainly of a higher order in many respects; because Missionaries to the heathen, have been called to exemplify in a more conspicuous manner, the qualities of the first heralds of the gospel to the Gentiles, who were distinguished as hazarded their lives for the sake of the Lord Jesus." The subject of this Memoir possessed in no small degree that evangelical zeal, ardour, and intrepidity, and those abilities for preaching, and acquiring languages, which fitted him for a station of labour and toil in the missionary field. But the Lord of the harvest, who we doubt not had counted him faithful, and put him into the ministry, after having permitted him to enter into the field, was pleased very suddenly to call him from bis work, be having finished, as a hireling, his day. Whilst, however, we mark his Sovereignty, we bow submissively to his mysterious will, knowing
that HE who calls his labourers to their various employments, or away from them, whether at the third, or sixth, or even the eleventh hour, will give to every oue his reward, and has a right to do what he will with his own. This was the case respecting Mr. Joseph Phillips, who was sent to Java in August 1816, by the Baptist Missionary Society, and returning on account of ill health in the autumn of 1819, died at Reading, in June 1820.
The few particulars we are about to give respecting this pious and excellent missionary, are compiled chiefly from a manuscript of his own, written sometime after he had been called to the ministry by the church in Eagle-street in January 1815.
Mr. Joseph Phillips was born in London, November 10, 1793. His mother was a pious woman, a member of the church in Grafton-street under the care of the late Rev. John Martin. Dying when her son was but fourteen months old, he was deprived of the advantages he might have received from her counsels and example, though he doubtless derived benefits from her prayers and supplications.
He speaks of this loss as having
been supplied by the solicitude of his mother-in-law, manifested by her advice, and constant prayers for his temporal, and eternal interests.
It was not until he had reached his sixteenth year that he was brought to any abiding concern about his eternal welfare, though the light he had received from the gospel had often caused him to feel great uneasiness. "I had made," says he, "repeated resolutions of reformation and amendment, but these were made under the apprehensions of the evil consequences, and not from a consideration of the evil nature of sin."
chain of error, and establishing
It pleased God to direct him
A sermon preached by Mr. Oates at Jewin-street chapel at the close of the year 1809, was the means of rousing him from his stupidity and unconcern. His thoughts were now filled with a dread of eternal wrath. "I well remember," says he, "that as I met persons in the street, I exclaimed to myself, How is it that creatures born for eternity, whose lives hang on so feeble a thread, and who have such repeated warnings in the daily providences of God, act so foolish, so awful, and so inconsistent a part? These impressions remained a long time. I continued dissatisfied with my-my justification! And what shall self, and longed for something I render to the good Spirit of my without scarcely knowing what I God, for watching over me and needed. My mind, too, was preserving me amidst imminent harassed with evil suggestions, dangers; for turning my feet into and I was tempted to disbelieve the way of peace; for bringing the divine authenticity of the me to an acquaintance with myscriptures, and even the being of self, and applying to my cona God. But the saying of a friend, science the peace-speaking blood Be assured these thoughts are of Christ? Now I cried earnestly the suggestions of the great enemy to God for the teachings of his of souls, who was a liar from the Spirit, and by a diligent attention beginning,' and my reading some on the means of his appointment verses in the Youth's Magazine, I increased in light, but was still were the means of breaking the the subject of distressing doubts
and fears. If my experience did not exactly accord with that of Christians of whom I had heard or read, I was ready to despair."
His whole soul was now engaged about his salvation. "At this time," says he, " my mind was so intensely set upon the importance of eternal realities, that it was with the greatest difficulty I could attend to my usual secular employments. An interest in Jesus I esteemed the one thing needful. The honours, profits, or pleasures of this world appeared but as bubbles upon the stream. My affections were set on things above, and all my desire was, that I might be found in Christ, washed in his blood, and clothed in his righteousness. I almost envied those who could rejoice in the light of his countenance, and felt that I could willingly submit to be the poorest and most despised person on earth, if I could but see my interest clear in him. I look back on this season, and am ready to say, ọ that it were with me as in months that are past, when the candle of the Lord shone round about me!
little light I had previously gained I felt anxious to impart to them. And Oh! never can I forget the happy meetings we repeatedly had for prayer and spiritual conversation; with one voice we exclaimed, Lord, it is good to be here.' In these seasons of retirement from the world, we have found our God with us, and that to bless us."
He soon after this, April 26, 1811, was baptized, with fifteen others, at Eagle-street meeting, and the next Lord's-day was admitted to fellowship at the Lord's table. He thus describes his reasons for uniting with the Baptists. "After much deliberation and prayer, and diligent inquiry, into the word of God, I felt convinced that the baptism of professing believers, and that by immersion, was most consistent with those examples which are recorded in the New Testament."
His engagements as a superintendent of the Sunday-school, proved, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, the cause of eliciting his character, and calling forth into exercise his abilities for preaching the gospel of Christ. He says, " My exertions in the Sunday-school were increasingly productive of pleasure, and I trust of profit, not only to my own soul, but to the rising generation among whom I laboured. While instructing the dear children in the principles of the gos
At the beginning of the year 1811, through his acquaintance with a pious man, a member of the church in Eagle-street, he was brought to the knowledge of Mr. Ivimey, and by him was introduced to the Sunday-school belonging to that congregation. "Thus," says he, "I became ac-pel, quainted with several youths of my own age. Here I found a field for exertion. Many were enquiring the way to Zion, and seeking direction. How did my bosom heave with gratitude on perceiving ten young men intent on the discovering of what they should do to be saved! The
and endeavouring to turn their attention to those things which make for their everlasting peace, I have felt my own soul refreshed, and by the delight unspeakable which I have sometimes derived from these exercises, I have felt a renewed stimulus, in the midst of difficulties, to persevere, believing that
the Spirit of God would accom- | creation of God yet sitting in
darkness; and my prayer has
pany the means, and that the
The ardour of his mind pre
It appears that the mind of our late brother was exercised from the time of his conversion with strong desires to be employ-vented these feelings from being ed in preaching the gospel. About kept secret: they appeared in the five years after he had been impassioned manner in which he led to embrace the Saviour as the spoke on the subject of missions only atoning saèrifice for sin, and to the heathen. His father checkto regard him as his Advocate ed him, and cautioned him a.with the Father, his Redeemer gainst indulging such an idea; and friend," he thus expresses but he became so wholly absorbed vhimself upon that subject." Du- in the subject, as to be rendered Iring this time my desires have almost incapable of attending to been constant and increasing, worldly business. In October, that my fellow-sinners may be 1812, he freely opened his mind .made acquainted with the gospel to his pastor, who encouraged of salvation; nor can I cease to him to devote himself to the work feel, especially for the heathen of a missionary, provided his faworld. Much have I wished, if ther would give his consent: it were the will of God concern- this, however, at that time, was ing me, to be permitted to go forth refused, and he was under and spread the knowledge of a age. After, however, two years Saviour's name in some distant had elapsed, he renewed his apland, where the light of the glo- plication; and in January, 1815, -rious gospel has hitherto not shed the church called him to exercise its benign rays. Often has my his gifts, which were highly-apheart glowed with ardour while proved. The Committee of the contemplating those parts of the Baptist Missionary Society agreed