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JOSEPH TANNER, of Cirencester ; his searching, experimental ministry is told of in his published life and letters. He died in 1867.
JOHN TRIMMING, many years the honoured pastor of the church at Irthlingborough, Northamptonshire, closed his eyes in 1862, aged eighty-two.
JAMES SHORTER, of Wilderness Row, died 1861, aged sixty-four.
JAMES SEARLE, a homely, earnest, spiritually minded minister. Died at Farnborough, 1868.
ROBERT ROFF, pastor at Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire, from 1830 to 1860, a man of loving spirit, firm and true to convictions of Gospel truth.
THOMAS SHARP, just fifty years ago, was chosen to succeed good John Rees at Crown Street, Soho, and continued faithful to the end.
W. K. RYECROFT preached some time at Bethesda Chapel, City Road. In 1845 went out to mission work in the Bahamas, closing his labours at his Father's call in 1865.
Thomas Row, a humble man, exact and truthful, learnt Gospel truth at the feet of John Stevens ; began his ministry about fourteen years before our HERALD commenced, to which he often contributed. He laboured in his latter days at Little Gransden, Cambs, and was much esteemed in the regions round about, living and working on till 1868, when, being more than fourscore, he was sent for home.
JAMES SMITH, of Cheltenham, was also a frequent contributor to the HERALD in its earlier days. In 1841 hé removed to Park Street, London, returning to Cheltenham in 1850 until 1862, when his life on earth ceased. He was a good and zealous man and an interesting writer, albeit in his later years loosing his hold of some of the distinctive truths we cherish, or so adding to them (as the custom is) that they became obscured or mystified. CHARLES, his brother, preached the Gospel of Christ about forty years, in a plain, useful manner; some time at Shoreditch ; removed, in 1856, to Leicester, where he peacefully slept in Jesus on January 27th, 1874. His wife died on the same day, and was buried with him.
THOMAS SUTTON, of Cottenham, a gifted man, an able minister of the New Testament, dispensing with power and point the true Gospel. He had left the care of the natural sheepfold, and became a true pastor of men until old age; laid by with infirmities, but with mind clear, he departed to the upper
fold 1860, eighty-one years old. CHARLES
ROBINSON, another thoughtful, godly preacher for forty years, chiefly at Brentford and Borough Green, died much beloved in 1862.
John SAXBY, a faithful minister of Jesus Christ for many years at Sheerness, Crowborough, &c., closed his commission in 1867.
EVAN PROBERT, of Bristol, from 1834 to 1861, died in 1867, much valued.
JOHN PEACOCK was at Spencer Place, London, from 1821 to 1864, then dying at the age of eighty-five. His labours were much blessed to many.
JAMES NUNN came to Ipswich in 1831, and continued ten or twelve years ; afterwards in Camden Town, London, dying in 1863.
WILLIAM MORTIMER, of Chippenham, was paralysed in the pulpit and died 1869, aged sixty-eight. A good man, a truthful preacher, and highly esteemed.
(To be continued.)
Expositions, Essays, &c.
CHRIST KNOCKING AT THE
passage of Scripture, it is, above all, DOOR.
needful to examine the context; so we A Paper read at a Bible Class.
will first notice by whom, and to whom,
these words were spoken. "Behold, I stand at the door and knock; any man hear My voice, and open the door, I
Theinysterious Revelation from which will come in to him, and will sup with him, and our subject is taken was given, we are he with Me."-Rev. iii. 20.
told, by God the Father to His Son, The text which comes before us for dis- who sent it by His angel to His servant cussion to-night is one amongst many
John ; that disciple who, in his younger
; others in the New Testament which days, had been favoured with such close are made use of, by the opponents of and loving intercourse with the Master, the doctrines of sovereign grace, on
for whose sake he was now, in his old which to found an appeal to sinners to age, banished to the Isle of Patmos,
accept the Saviour," and to expostu- where he received this message. The late with them on the folly of refusing
with John's His “offers of mercy” while there is salutation to the seven Churches : yet time.
“Grace be unto you, and peace, from Now, as we find our Saviour, shortly Him which is, and which was, and before He finished the work which the which is to come ; and from the seven Father had given Him to do, saying, spirits which are before His throne; “All that the Father giveth Me, shall and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithcome to Me,” we cannot receive such an ful witness, and the first begotten of interpretation of the passage.
the dead, and the prince of the kings Moreover, we see from Holy Writ of the earth. Unto Him that loved that the work of conversion in the us,
and washed us from our sins in His sinner's soul commences with the sense, own blood, and hath made us kings or conviction, of sin, produced by the and priests unto God and His Father ; operating influence of God the Holy to Him be glory and dominion for ever Spirit, which leads the sinner to and ever ;”—and thus we see that those cry,“ What must I do to be saved ?" to whom John was writing were, with And, while religious experiences may himself, included in that happy number differ in degree, varied by circumstances who had been already redeemed from and temperaments, yet we believe that
among men. We pass by the solemn conviction for sin" must precede “joy messages addressed respectively to the and peace in believing ;” and, perhaps, Churches at Ephesus, Smyrna, Perone of the greatest errors of so-called gamos, Thyatira, Sardis, and PhiladelGospel preaching" in the present day phia, with their various commendations is, that men are besought to "
come to and reproofs, and come to that sent to Jesus," without being even told why the Laodicean Church, and we find that they need a Saviour.
her condition is indeed sad. She is A8 we, therefore, reject the popular charged not only with lukewarmness, meaning attached to the text, let us but with self-satisfaction in connection try, by the help of the enlightening with that lukewarmness. Spirit of all grace, to discover its true “I am rich, and have need of nothing; meaning,
while the Apostle says she is "wretched To understand rightly any single and miserable, poor, blind, and naked."
Surely, with such a list of offences How often does the Christian wince catalogued against her, the Church under a faithful sermon, when his conmight well expect her Lord to exclaim, science condemns him for sins of omis.' “Cut it down, why cumbereth it the sion and commission. Then, again, in ground"? But no; listen to the gracious the ordinances of His house, when a words which follow: “As many as I young believer is professing his allelove I rebuke and chasten ; be zealous, giance to his Lord in the way He Him. therefore, and repent.”
self has appointed, the Saviour's loving We see, therefore, that the succeeding voice often speaks to His children, rewords, “Behold, I stand at the door
minding them of the days of their and knock; if any man hear My voice espousals, and leading them to confess, and open the door, I will come in to alas ! before their Father in Heaven, in him, and will sup with him, and he how many things since then have they with Me," are spoken to the Church, fallen short. which has grown cold and negligent in Then, also, when surrounding the her Lord's service, not to the sinner dead table of the Lord, the Christian may in trespasses and sins.
be conscious of his Master's gentle What wondrous love is manifested in whisper, "I gave My life for thee, how the loving exhortation and conditional art thou serving Me?" promise, that the great and mighty God, The Church should also hear her the Saviour of His people, should con- Lord's voice, reminding her that her descend to the familiar intercourse days of service may be few, when He implied in the words, “I will come in calls one from her midst to take his to him, and will sup with him,"-inter- place in the Church triumphant. Many course with men who, having once more instances might be adduced, but realised such favours and blessings from these, I think, will suffice. We have His hand, have not only become careless looked at these words as applying to and indifferent, but have established the Church in her corporate capacity; themselves in their own righteousness. but, as she is composed of individual
Remembering, then, that all Scripture believers, let each take to himself the was given, not only for the times when
promise therein contained, at the same the various portions were written, but time noticing that here is to be found a for the guidance and reproof of Chris- doctrine of works, as well as of faith: tians until they shall have reached that “ If any man hear My voice, and will land where there “shall be no more open the door, I will come in." sin,” should not the Church of Christ We know, blessed be God, that our now examine herself, to see how far salvation does not depend upon our these words are applicable to her ? Does works, but much of our spiritual vigour she need the rebuke addressed to the
and happiness does--an idle Christian Laodiceans ? or is she using every effort, can never be a really happy one, and and straining every nerve, to promote an idle Church is very likely to become the interests of her Master's Kingdom a lukewarm one. In conclusion, may upon earth, and letting her “light so we take the words of the poet to express shine before men, that they may see her our heartfelt and earnest desire : good works, and glorify her Father which is in Heaven”?
"Enter our hearts, Redeemer blest, It may be asked, In what manner
Enter, Thou ever-honoured Guest ; does the Saviour knock?
Not for one transient hour alone, briefly notice some of the ways con- But there to fix Thy lasting throne." nected with a church life. Chiefly, perhaps, by the ministrations
M. L. G. of His
servants, in preaching the Word ; that Word which is alike profitable “for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction.”
unfruitful seasons. Have they been BRIEF NOTES OF A SERMON BY
unfruitful ? God has withheld in · MR. G. HILL.
measure His sunshine from our island
home, but treasures have been poured "Remove far from me vanity and lies; give upon other countries. Suppose He me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me."-PROV. XXX. 8.
had withheld it from them, as it has Who Agur was I cannot tell you.
been from us of late, what different Sometimes it pleases God to give us à
scenes would have been presented !
But no; God has been at work; He biographical sketch of the lives of those whom He is pleased to make useful ;
has been superintending in His uni.
versal providence. We are too narrow sometimes only the words of their lips
in our views; there is a universal are recorded, as in the case of Agur. But what does it signify? Who is
providence over nations as well as a
special one over individuals. Agur Paul, or who Apollos, but instruments God is pleased to use? Agur possessed
confesses his want of understanding in a large amount of grace. He appears
these matters, and he looks up to the to have been a teacher in Israel, to
great God of heaven, and says, Lord, whom others resorted for instruction.
come and manage for me-me, who am
so unwise and so weak that I cannot But, though others thought much of him, he had learned the lesson of
manage for myself.” Yes, he was thinking humbly of himself
. Having things
, but takes notice of little things,
right; for God not only orders great given us a confession of his faith, he
and remembers the lowly in their low proceeds to give us his prayer in the seventh and eighth verses of this chap
estate. Nothing is too great for God ter, and a reason for it in the ninth.
to manage, nothing too small for Him
to take notice of. David and Paul Hé had thought about what things he
both acknowledged God's goodness to should pray for, and considered what
them from the womb to the tomb. it was he most needed, and found he
God heard the first cry of the infant specially required two things. My text involves these two things, and they are
Paul, knew what he would be, and
how much better he would be qualified such as none but a good and gracious mind would ask for.
for his work by the circumstances by
which he would be surrounded through We notice, first, the Providence ac
life. You and I to-day are what the knowledged ; second, the prayer preferred. First. The Providence acknowledged.
past has made us ; circumstances form
our character ; do what we will, God He is looking at the circumstances by which he is surrounded, acknowledging
shapes the end. It is a very pleasant
thought that the God of heaven, who what so many forget—that there is a God in the heavens whose Kingdom
rules among angels, takes notice of me.
David said, " I am poor and needy, yet ruleth over all, and that He is the care
the Lord thinketh upon me.” There taker of our world. The human heart
is a universal providence, and there is is prone to turn away from God; but the Christian believes, not only that
also a special providence, over the
every-day life of every heaven-born God is, but also that He takes notice of
pilgrim. everything. It is a blessed faith to
Second. The prayer preferred. In the have in exercise that
first place, there is something the re"Not a single shaft can hit,
moval of which is earnestly wished for. Till the God of love sees fit;" “Remove far from me vanity and lies." that all things are under His superin- Not a little way ; not just over the tending care-sparrows and nations, hedge; but far away, whence their rain and sunshine, all are ruled by evil, injurious influences cannot be Him. We are apt to speak of things felt. “Remove far from me vanity that directly concern ourselves, and we and lies ;” they are the consequences have heard much complaint of late of of sin ; remove them far away. God
me.” As a child, feed me with food convenient for me-food that is suitable and adapted for me.
Give me this day my daily bread—this day. The food is not always to be alike, but varied ; not always in the same form. You and I like variety in our natural food-bread, flesh, vegetables, fruitand the Lord has filled the earth with His goodness in this respect. And so, spiritually, His Word is full of good things convenient and suitable for His children, and they come to them in varied forms adapted to their cases and circumstances. Sometimes a promise, sometimes a grand old testimony of Divine truth, comes to strengthen the struggling one; sometimes a whisper, like a zephyr breeze coming from the skies, and the feeble one catches it up. Only, O my God ! feed me with food convenient for me! Let me take the position David took : be Thy guest, sit here in the wilderness whilst Thou dost prepare a table before me, and feed me till I want no more. Amen.
says, "I have removed thy transgressions from thee." How far? As far as the east is from the west. Thus, you see, the act of God and the desire of the godly here meet. Then, I think, Agur wanted to be removed from the deceit which hangs around people-a kind of mist which you cannot penetrate. Too often, also, appearances are deceitful; devils may be dressed in angels' robes. Prosperity may not be good for me; it may not be what it seems to be. It will be wise for us to take the language of our text, and pray as Agur did. We see the propriety of his prayer; it accords with what our Master taught His disciples : "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil ; give us this day our daily bread.”
In the next place, we see there is something he did not wish to have. Here comes the difficulty of the prayer
-"Give me neither poverty nor riches." I think very few people could sincerely pray that prayer. It is a wise, good prayer; but it rises to an altitude that only grace can raise men to, and that great grace, too. Great grace was upon Àgur when he uttered this prayer ; his motive in uttering it was a high one“Lest I be full and deny Thee, and say, Who is the Lord ? or lest I be poor and steal, and take the name of my God in vain."
“Give me neither poverty nor riches.” Could you pray that prayer? Some people are all for amassing wealth. There is no evil in riches, but often much evil connected with them. When Jeshurun waxed fat he forgot the God of his salvation. The only thing the rich man in the parable forgot was God, the Giver of all his riches. “Soul,” he said, “thou hast much goods laid up for many years ; eat, drink, and be merry." —but said nothing about God. Ah ! dear friends, there is an influence with riches that, when it fills a man's heart, there is little room for God. Depend upon it that man is happy who has enough to be content with, which brings us to the last petition in the good man's prayer :
« Feed me with food convenient for
FAVOURITE HYMNS AND THEIR
No. 18. JOHN NEWTON'S HYMNS. Nor the least esteemed among the productions of the sweet singers in our British Zion obtaining currency in the Selections are the hymns written by John Newton, once a bold blasphemer, afterwards, by the transforming, grace of God, a very useful and highly esteemed minister of the Gospel of Christ. Written in plain language, mostly easy and flowing in construction, and, above all, instinct with delineations of spiritual life in every variety of feeling experienced by the child of God, they are highly prized by spiritually minded Christians of all classes in society, of all denominations in the religious world. It will be a sad sign of the decay of vital godliness in this land when John Newton's hymns cease to find a place among the songs of our sanctuaries.