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for instance, when advanced to a high civilization,should reject christianity, and the land which Pomarre has covered with churches consecrated to the one God, should become again a land of idols; would Henry and Ellis and their companions be forgotten? Rather would their names be enrolled amongst the fancied deities of the nation; altars and temples would be raised for their worship; and poets would sing their labours, adding to real facts, all that a grateful imagination could invent of the wonderful and the mysterious.
The next point which may deserve our attention, is the schools of the missionaries. Let no one think that they are of no importance in the present subject. They are of great importance. The missionary extends his influence through all the future relations of his pupil, and in this way affects the literary interests of the people as truly as their moral and social interests. There is an intimate connexion between the literature of a nation and the early education of its youth. The most sanguine friends of American literature do not expect it to possess all the elegance and perfection of the English, so long as the boys in the English primary schools are made to carry their classical attainments beyond our Bachelors and Masters. Yet so long as our youth receive such instruction as they now do, there always must be a demand for the productions, and a love for the occupations of literature. This effect will be produced by schools in heathen countries. It is strikingly exhibited among the Hindoos. They had almost no schools before protestant missionaries entered India.(a) They placed no value upon learning. They had indeed few motives, for the Brahmins forbid them to read the sacred books, wishing, like the catholic priests, to foster in the people a spirit of ignorant and passive reliBut through the influence of
(a) See Winslow's Sketch, p. 103.
missions, schools are now extensively established, both Hindoos and Mussulmen are anxious to support and multiply them, and their effect in arousing the public mind is manifest. A native society has been formed in Calcutta to provide "books of moral and scientific instruction" for the benefit of their youth.
It must be remembered too that primary schools thus established in the pagan nations, will of course, introduce, sooner or later, higher institutions of more powerful and more extensive influence upon the progress of knowledge. Three such institutions have already arisen in the East; one originated by the Baptist missionaries, another by the societies of the Church of England, and a third by the Hindoos themselves. Those institutions will benefit perhaps, the whole of Southern Asia,and especially India, which seems, like China, to have attained to considerable cultivation, at some distant period, and to have been suddenly stopped in its progress, and stopped not with China to remain stationary, presenting forever, like the petrified city of the Arabian tales, the same unchanged and unchanging form; but to decline almost from year to year, even while surrounded with the monuments of former genius; to fall with their boasted philosophy, and their boasting priesthood, into deeper and deeper degradation. The Serampore College is designed expressly for the natives of India, both christian and pagan. The pupils will be instructed in the different languages(b) of the East, and particularly the Sangscrit in which the vedas (vads) and puraras are written, and which, through the artifice of the Brahmins, has in reality become a
(b)This will tend to make the literature of each language the common property of all. The translations made by Dr. Carey from the Sangscrit and Bengalee in
to Mahratta, for the students in Fort William College, have contributed to such an effect. See a Sangscrit and Mahratta Dictionary, made by the Missionaries.
dead language. The acquisition of this will enable the youth of India, not only to detect the impositions of their priests, but to understand and appreciate the literary works of their forefathers, and will awaken a spirit of research, which must ultimately exert a happy influence upon the literature of their country. Classes of the students will also be instructed in the learned languages, in law, in medicine, and theology, and thus the literature of the west will be introduced into India. Indeed India is already indebted to missions in this respect. Portions of Hume's England and Paley's Evidences have been published(b) for the schools. The Bombay mission has published a treatise on geography, of which subject the Hindoos are almost entirely ignorant. A son of one of the Serampore missionaries, (Dr. Carey,) has translated the dictionary of Johnson (c) into Bengalee, and published an Encyclopædia(d) in the same language.
The Bishop's (e) College is similar in its design to the Baptist College, and will produce similar effects; and the Hindoo College promises perhaps still more for the Hindoo literature and science. Its object is to enable the Hindoo youth to cultivate Asiatic and English literature in their various branches. It has ever met the approbation of the Pundits. One of them said at its formation, he rejoiced in having lived to see the day when literature, once successfully cultivated in his native country, but now almost extinct, was about to be revived with greater lustre than ever. It may be said there were literary institutions in India before. were.(f) But the benefits from the
(b)Mr. Bardwell's statements, verbal. (c)Christian Obs.
(d) Bap. Mag. Vol. 7, p. 423. (e) For accounts of these Colleges see Christ. Obs.
(f) An Academy at Tricinium on the Malabar coast. A Brahminic school in the Carnatic, which existed in the first
establishments now mentioned will infinitely transcend them; and these benefits flow from missions.
In contemplating the subject which is now before us, we must not forget that missions carry with them the press, an engine of more stupendous power, and of more certain and universal influence, than any other invention of man. "When letters were invented," says a Chinese writer, "the heavens, the earth, and the gods, were agitated. The inhabitants of Hades wept at night, and the skies, as an expression of joy, rained down ripe grain." The language is not, perhaps, too strong to indicate the value of the invention. Surely then, if the press be added to this, if the art of writing and the art of printing be bestowed upon a nation at the same time, it is a favor indeed. It removes barriers to intellectual improvement, which had ever been considered as impassible. This," said an Hon. visitor of Fort William College, "exhibits a combination of ingenuity, skill, and persevering toil, of which there are few examples.' Now to know that the art of printing is in Asia, and is extending itself, is to know that the work of intellectual renovation is begun there. the enemies of missions will say, the press is delivering the Hindoo, the Mussulman, from superstition; the press bas compelled the cruel Juggernaut to retreat, with his car, and priests, and licentious festivals, into the interior of India. We say so too. But we ask to what are the Hindoo and the Mussulman indebted for the press?
I cannot leave this topic without alluding to the press connected with our Palestine missions. The liberality, which formed that establishment was not misapplied. It has already made the voice of christian
century. The University of Benares, called by Robertson, the Athens of India. Robertson, however, was not much acquainted with the subject. The Jesuits found similar institutions in China; but their accounts are all exaggerations.
eloquence, (a) first addressed to seamen in one of our own capitals, to echo along the shores of the Mediterranean; to alarm and reform perhaps even some desperate corsair; at least to animate and sustain the patriotic mariner of Greece as he looks upon his native island, plundered and depopulated, his wife and children weltering in their blood, or pining in chains, himself an outcast, wounded and weary, while the revengeful Ottoman is exulting in his miseries, and still pouring upon his country the horrors of an exterminating war. Its influence will ultimately be felt through the whole of that struggling nation. The Palestine mission's press shall at least be among the means, by which the Greeks will become better acquainted with the science and the politics of their ancestors, and be raised to a truer liberty than their ancient democracy could confer, and to a higher intellectual cultivation than their former Platos and Aristotles ever attained. Its influence shall reach even the Turk, the proud, malicious, desperate, detested Turk. More; it shall kindle around the tomb of the Saviour and the Martyrs at Jerusalem, a flame which will devour the mummeries of the Catholic, and reveal to the Jew the glories of the crucified Messiah, and send out its light northward to the frozen Caucasus, and eastward to the city of the Caliphs, and southward, over the pyramids of Cairo, and the temple of the sun, and the ruined city of the hundred gates,far down into the darkness of neglected and insulted Africa.
Some may be sufficiently destitute of taste, and sufficiently superficial in their reflections, to object here, that mission presses are designed to multiply copies of the Scriptures, and not books of literature and sci
(a) Dr. Payson's Address to seamen, translated into moderm Greek. For recent intelligence from the press at Malta, see Missionary Herald for January. The tracts there stated to have been printed in Greek, amount to 13,500 copies.
ence. Now in point of fact, these presses do multiply, and will more and more multiply, books of the latter class. But does the literature of a country receive no profit, when it receives the gift of a Bible? Who doubts that it would promote the cause of learning among the Otaheitans to give them in their own language the literary productions of Greece? And are not the sacred books of the Hebrews literary productions; literary productions too, which will bear comparison with those of the Greeks? Surely they contain history, and poetry, and eloquence; eloquence without the fires of ambition or party; poetry, without the alloy of a cumberous and debasing mythology; history, without the ornaments and falsehoods of national partiality; poetry, and history, and eloquence, that are truly divine.
Now missions lay open this literature to every nation where they bestow the Bible. In the uncivilized countries, it is, fortunately for them, their first model. In these, and even in other countries, it will improve the language. The High German, now quite polished, was before the Reformation, rough indeed. Luther's Bible, says Villers, laid the the foundation for its improvement. It is unnecessary here to shew particularly how much missionaries have done in translating the Scriptures; let me merely request you to call to mind the translations in the East, those of the American mission. aries, and those of (b) Martyn, Morrison, and especially the Baptists at Serampore. Had these latter published a book of Homer, or a novel of Scott, in half as many languages as they have the revelation of Jesus Christ, I doubt not, that some who have called them coblers, and
(b) Martyn's Persian and Bengalee Testament. The former is said to be read with delight by the Persian literati. The latter is considered an acquisition of the highest importance (Quarterly Review,) to literature as well as religion. Morrison's Chinese Bible. Christ. Obs. Vol. 20, p. 656 and Quart. Rev.
tinkers, and madmen, would have been the first to praise their literary efforts. Can these translations fail to affect the interests of knowledge in those countries? Their influence will not be immediate, (b) but it will be certain. No man in India is doing more to enlighten his countrymen, and awaken them to thought and exertion, than Ram-mohun-roy, and all his efforts have flown from the study of the Gospels.
One consideration more must be presented respecting the influence of missions upon literature in the countries where they are planted; I mean the general effects of christianity. These extend to every portion of the social and political system. Christianity gives a new impulse to the whole machine.
The Protestants and Catholics both were obliged to examine and studythe protestants to disprove the claims of the pope-the catholics for self defence. This gave to learning an impulse, which is still felt in every corner of Christendom.
In a word, christianity enlarges and invigorates the human intellect. Paganism in all its shapes, confines the soul to time and sense, to matter and form. Christianity elevates it to things spiritual and invisible, to the infinite and the eternal.
Now I say that all these general effects contribute to the progress of literature, and I claim for missions the honour of being the primary instrument in producing such effects.
EPH. iv. 18.-Having the under standing darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart.
breaks up customs which degrade The understanding blinded by a deand enslave pagan society. For instance, it permits nothing like the Hindoo casts, which withhold from thousands the means of knowledge, and fix upon the whole nation the aspect of indolence, and stupidity, and vice. It elevates the female to her proper place in social life, which paganism every where denies her. This one circumstance is sufficient to regenerate a national literature-to bestow upon it a soul of enchanting, but undefinable sentiment, by which it becomes, in appearance and in reality, a new creation. Christianity destroys that national vanity, which makes the civilized and even savage pagan despise the institutions and arts of every country but his own. Otaheite has already formed a society to acquire the arts of England. It awakens the spirit of inquiry. “Are these things so ?" becomes the question. Pagan literati must exert themselves to prop up their crumbling superstitions. The effects must be similar to those of the Reformation.
(b) "A gloomy interval elapsed" ays the Quarterly Review," before the light gradually disseminated by Wickliffe's
translation of the Bible broke out in the flame of the Reformation. When once kindled, it was irresistible."
THIS is a part of one of the most affecting descriptions on record,of the deplorable character and condition of men in their natural state. addressed to the saints at Ephesus, in order to prevent their conformity Gentiles among whom they lived, to the practices of the unsanctified and from whom they had been made to differ by distinguishing grace. "This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, having the understanding darkened," apostle had ably preached the gospel to the impenitent Gentiles in Ephesus, and in many other places; and why did they form an unfavourable opinion of it? Why did they not perceive its holy nature, its salutary tendency, and its divine origin? Why did their judgment lead
them to reject the gospel as foolishness, and cleave with increased eagerness, to those false schemes of religion, which it was designed to subvert and sweep from the face of the earth? Why did they really believe that Christ was an impostor, that the apostles were beside themselves, and that true religion consisted in the worship of idols? Why all these errors of opinion, these speculative mistakes, these false decisions of the understanding? To all these questions the language of the text supplies an answer, because of the blindness of their heart. Their feelings were wrong, and these distorted their views, perverted their judgment, and corrupted their opinions. The doctrine therefore, which we are to consider, is this:-The feelings of the natural heart exert a pernicious influence on the under standing.
As it will be impossible in a single discourse, to go into a full examination of this truth, I shall confine my illustrations of it to these faculties of the human mind-perception, memory, and judgment.
1. As it regards the faculty of perception. This is necessary to every act of the understanding; for without it, the intellect cannot act at all. But by a blinded or depraved heart, this eye of the mind is dimmed. It is not so quick to discern moral distinctions. This is the reason why so many perceive no harm in neglecting the sanctuary, in reading the news of the day, and in roving abroad on the Sabbath; no harm in profaneness, in tavern-haunting, in living without prayer, and in following the multitude to do evil. They perceive no evil in these things, not because the whole scope of the gospel does not condemn them, nor be cause they are deficient in natural discernment; but because their depraved inclination casts a blur over their mental eye, and thus hides from their view the moral deformity of their practice.
Of all the heedless youths in our galleries, who, by their indecorum,
cast contempt on the public worship of God, where is there one, ordinarily, that perceives any great harm in such conduct? They do not retire from the holy place which they have desecrated, with their countenance fallen, and their eyes streaming with tears, in view of the insult they have offered to the Almighty. And this, because their perception is obscured by the influence of their unholy feelings.
The same effect is wrought on the faculty of perception, when people who are justly charged with every moral delinquency, deny it, and even justify their conduct. The world is full of instances of self-justification, and even when the guilt is not only real, but flagrant and conspicuous. Where have you seen two members of the same family engaged in bitter contention, when each did not excuse himself, and condemn the other? Or where have you seen two neighbours embroiled in a contest, where both were not loud in their own justification? Hundreds of lawsuits are every year brought to the civil tribunal; and in all cases, the effort of the plaintiff, and the ef fort of the defendant, is to make it appear, if possible, that himself is in the right, and his antagonist in the wrong. But in all these instances, one, at least, of the respective contending parties, must be guilty; and why does he not perceive it, and desist from the controversy? The blindness of his heart impairs his vission, and thus prevents his perceiving what he could not but perceive, if he felt as he ought.
Why does the sinner whose conscience gives him no uneasiness on account of his neglect of repentance and increasing stupidity, perceive no guilt within him, and no danger before him? When the ambassador of Christ is proving to him his lost condition, exhorting him to flee from the wrath to come, and pressing him with every motive that can be derived from a violated law, a neglected gospel, and eternal perdition,-why does he look upon all this as