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the fine fruit called grape; which expressions become more palatable to their taste.” (pp. 31 -34.)
In answer to the Abbé's objection to the principle of circulating the Sacred Scriptures among the unconverted Hindoos, on the ground of their prejudices, I would remark, that the number of prejudices peculiar to the Hindoos, would, upon accurate examination, be found neither so numerous nor so insuperable as the author represents, and as many suppose; but that, on the contrary, the great mass of their prejudices are such as are common to the world at large; and if these are to be deemed a reason for suppressing the gospel in India, they would equally militate against the promulgation of the gospel in England, or in France, or in any
other part of the world what
The doctrines of the gospel are levelled against all sin, of every kind, and especially the two master-sins of our fallen nature-pride and sensuality. The cross of Christ comes, as with an axe, to the root of both these trees of iniquity. It tells the proud Pharisee in Judea, and the proud Briton in England, as well as the proud Brahmin in India, that he has broken God's holy law, and is exposed to the wrath to come. That by the deeds of the law shall no flesh living be justified,
and that there is no other name given under heaven whereby he can be saved, but the name of Him who fulfilled all righteousness as the sinner's
, gave up his life as a sacrifice for sin upon the cross.
It tells the sensual of every clime, that unless a man be born again-unless his heart be changed and rendered holy by the influences of the Spirit of God - unless he, through faith in the cross of Christ, crucify the flesh with its affections and lusts, he cannot be saved. Now these humbling and purifying doctrines have, in all parts of the world where they have been proclaimed, excited the prejudices and aversion of mankind, for they are directly opposed to the very master-sins of the human heart.
In the apostle's days, the cross of Christ produced the very effect the Abbé complains of, both among the Jews and among the Gentiles. “ We preach Christ crucified; to the Jews a stumbling block, and to the Greeks foolishness :" yet the command of Christ to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, (as well as the Acts of the Apostles, and Church history in general) abundantly proves that the gospel is not to be withheld from men because they entertain sentiments discordant with it; nay, if the gospel were not in opposition to the opinions, the practices, and the
prejudices of men, who, from their lapsed condition, are under the tyranny of sin, it would cease to be worth possessing, and prove itself to be on a par with those various systems of false religion which promise heaven at the close of an
As to those prejudices peculiar to the Hin- . doos, which are of the stronger kind, and more violently affect their feelings, the principal of them have been referred to by the Abbé; and even these I have, in many instances, found capable of being either materially diminished, or actually overcome. I have argued with the Brahmins and others, and when they have objected that I ate beef, I have referred them to their own Shasters, which say that men who attain to a high degree of knowledge, sanctity, and abstraction, may eat any thing, and that the distinctions about food and ceremonies are peculiar to the ignorant and grovelling. By this answer I have seen their prejudice materially abated, if not totally removed.
With respect to the drinking of wine, when they have objected to it, I have quoted a passage from their own Shaster, intimating that wine may be drank medicinally, and said, that Paul enjoins the drinking of but a little, and that for the stomach's sake, which is the using it as sub
servient to one's health, and thus I have found this prejudice recede also.
With respect to animals offered up in sacrifice, I have argued with the Brahmins and other Hindoos concerning their own practice of the like kind, and said, “Why do you slay all those kids in your religious services? Does God cat flesh or drink blood ?”—They have been at a loss to vindicate their practice, and afforded an excellent opening for explaining to them the real origin and meaning of animal sacrifices, and of shewing them that they began as early as the days of Adam, the first man that ever lived, the first who ever sinned, and in whose days the promise of a Saviour was first made ;--of shewing to them that these sacrifices were ordained in order to
prefigure the vicarious sacrifice of Christ, who, in the fulness of time, came into the world, died upon the cross, and became the “ Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world;"—that their own sacrifices all originated from this primary revelation, but that with the loss of the knowledge of the true God, they had lost the knowledge of many things pertaining to his worship also ; and of this relating to sacrifices among the number. By enlarging upon these and corresponding points, I have never found the sacrifice of animals, as spoken of in the Bible,
detrimental to the dissemination of the gospel ; but, on the contrary, furnishing an easy and advantageous mode of leading up to the vital doctrine which the great Apostle of the Gentiles constantly proclaimed, and in reference to which he said to the Corinthians, “I determined not to know any thing among you save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.”.
With regard to the meanness of Christ's origin, I have found that a full exhibition of the divine nature of our Saviour; of his miraculous conception, without the intervention of any human father; and of the necessity of his humiliation to effect man's redemption, have been quite sufficient to remove any unfavourable impression which might result from the circumstance of his reputed father being a carpenter. According to the Abbé's account of the sermon which gave so much umbrage to his Hindoo audience, it appears as though he had unnecessarily, and unscripturally, increased their prejudices by representing Christ as really the son of a carpenter, instead of prominently pointing out the dignity and peculiarity of his character as the * Son of God."
With regard to the Abbé's assertion, that the Bible "contains in almost every page accounts which cannot fail deeply to wound their (the Hindoos') feelings, by openly hurting prejudices