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POMARE'S OFFERING TO CHRIST,
sionaries more trouble, than they did them service.
It was on March 5th, that the first wooden posts or pillars of the chapel were reared to form the walls, The time was remarkable, because it was three
years, all but one day, since the missionaries' first arrival in Tahiti. The brethren were grieved to hear the natives who were assisting them, jeering at Christ as they worked, and to see them scoffingly marking each pillar in their manner, with his name. They earnestly hoped that those pillars would hereafter be witnesses to the conversion of these miserable heathen.
Pomare soon afterwards gave a great proof of his ignorance, by sending the brethren a raw fish, with a request that it might be hung up in the chapel, as an offering to Jesus Christ. One of the brethren went to him to return the fish, and to tell him, that it was not the custom of their God, to receive sacrifices of food from any one; but that he gave food to all, and that all should thank him for his gifts. Pomare seemed displeased with this answer, but tried to appear indifferent, and said, “ Very well.”
Another trial, much like one they had before experienced, was now coming upon the brethren, and it was one of the most afflicting which they could endure.
A SECOND ROOT OF BITTERNESS.
SHOULD you not have thought that those seven missionaries, who remained stedfast, when eleven fled away in the Nautilus, were all full of faith and love to God? Yet you have already heard how one forsook his God, and now you must hear of another who wandered from the fold.
About this time there sprang up amongst the brethren“a root of bitterness.” It was Mr. Broomhall—the man who had taken so deep an interest in the death of Mr. Lewis, and had made so many inquiries about it.
A remarkable circumstance occurred to him about a week before the brethren began to fear for his soul.
It was on the 29th of May, while he was eating the head of a fish, that he was suddenly seized with a violent heat all over him, and his flesh and the white of his eyes became red. It happened that the kind of fish he had eaten, became poisonous when it was stale, as it was
THE UNBELIEVING MISSIONARY.
at that time. Mr Broomhall immediately took some fresh oil, and then, by the advice of the natives, bathed in the sea, and in a few hours recovered. Thus was Mr. Broomhall delivered from the death of the body, but in his soul a more deadly poison had been lodged by Satan. There was a fountain in which he might have washed and been healed of this disease. You shall now hear how the sickness of his soul discovered itself.
The brethren used to meet once a month, before they took the Lord's Supper, to speak to one another about their feelings towards God. On one of these occasions Mr. Broomhall refused to speak in his turn. About a week afterwards, at a prayer meeting, while Mr. Bicknell was praying, Mr. Broomhall suddenly left the room and returned no more into it.
Two days afterwards, when the brethren were met together, Mr. Henry read to the brethren two letters that he had received from Mr. Broomhall (who, it happened, was absent for a day or two.) These letters were full of foolish and false ideas about the soul, and showed that Mr. Broomhall did not believe God's word, and that his heart was filled with conceit of his knowledge, and understanding. The brethren were deeply grieved at hearing these letters, for they perceived that their companion was turned aside after Satan. They
146 HIS DISPLEASURE WITH HIS BRETHREN.
determined, however, to do all they possibly could to convert him from the error of his
ways. They soon held a meeting, in which they questioned Mr. Broomhall about his thoughts, and they found that he had not even the desire to know God, and that for some time past he had hated prayer and reading the scriptures, and had not been able to bear to hear the prayers of the brethren. They agreed to set apart a day for fasting and prayer upon Mr. Broomhall's account. They met together three times on this day, but they advised Mr. Broomhall (as he disliked their service) to spend it alone. He consented to do so, though very angry in his heart for the advice. The brethren took every opportunity at all times to speak to Mr. Broomhall about religion, and they often prayed for him, even in his presence, which greatly offended him.
On June 30th, a meeting was held to decide what was to be said to Mr. Broomhall concerning taking the Lord's Supper. At this meeting the brethren found that Mr. Broomhall was angry with them because they had prayed that he might never find any happiness in the world, and by this means be brought back to the Savi
He thought this petition unkind, though it was made from love to his immortal soul. He seemed to wish that the brethren would quite cast him out; but they pitied his youth,
MR. HENRY'S EXCURSION.
(for he was but three-and-twenty,) and desired to keep him near them, for they remembered the dreadful end of Mr. Lewis. On these accounts they did not excommunicate him, but only forbade him to take the Lord's Supper at present.
Perhaps the brethren acted too indulgently towards him; for he appeared to be an apostate, one who had denied the faith; and not a backslider only. It was very doubtful whether he had ever been truly converted to God. He had received a religious education, and perhaps had imagined he was religious, till beset by strong temptations in a heathen country.
In the course of July, Mr. Henry asked Mr. Broomhall to accompany him
a short journey, that he was going to take for his wife's health. Mr. Henry hoped to find opportunities in the journey to persuade Mr. Broomhall to return to God, and to implore his mercy. Mr. Broomhall consented to go.
Mr. and Mrs. Henry, and little Sarah and Mr. Broomhall, went in a boat rowed by four natives. They set out at midnight, when the sea was calm, and the moon was up, for night is the most delightful season in Tahiti; and they arrived at the place they desired, on the coast of Tahiti, at break of day.
Two days afterwards, Mr. Broomhall returned alone in the boat with the natives. The reasoú was, little Sarah (who had been asleep on het