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are not over; till our life is ended, our trials cannot cease. The utmost we can say is, that a part of our work is done, for part still remains to be accomplished. We may be nearer our end than those who have not made so much progress in the Christian course; but we have not yet attained. If the duties of youth and maturity have been fulfilled, those attendant on old age remain for us. If we have not neglected our duties when in health and strength, there are others connected with sickness and death which now claim our attention.
Lest any one should be discouraged at the idea of always having to go forward in the Christian path, see how this arduous duty may be most easily performed: let us consider the means used by St. Paul. 1. He kept in view the prize he desired to obtain. "The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." 2. He kept looking unto Jesus. He copied the example given him in the life of his Saviour; his Saviour's grace excited, persuaded, enabled him to go forward ; his Saviour's promise encouraged him, “ To him that overcometh will I give to sit down with me in my throne. His Saviour's mercy and love led him to believe that his efforts, if sincere, though weak and imperfect, would be accepted: and he looked forward to the end of his journey when he would be with his Saviour. These two objects were in fact but one; for Christ himself was the prize St. Paul sought to obtain; and the liappiness of heaven to which he looked forward, consisted in the presence of Christ. He himself thus.speaks: “ While we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord; we are confident and willing rather to be absent from the body and present with the Lord.” “Having a desire to depart and to be with Christ, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Every step he took brought him nearer to his Lord, and this thought rendered him insensible to the difficulties of the way, and encouraged him to press forward. May the same love to the Saviour enliven our hearts and cause us to know by experience that all things are possible to the believer.
The prettiest flower is seen,
A passing cloud between:
Far lovelier is seen,
The lowly cot within.
H. J. I.
From an Address of Rev. Mr. Read, Missionary at Bombay. THE tracts which we publish in India with your funds will reach many a benighted mind to which we can convey Divine truth in no other way. We should almost despair of converting the heathen without these means. We can often proclaim the very truth, and at the very time we wish too, in this way, when we could do it in no other. You know, sir, that there are many in this country who will much more readily and profitably read one of your pungent tracts than they will read a larger book. But there are many more among the heathen that will read one of our tracts than will read a book. Indolence is one of the strong features of the heathen character. The bramins themselves will not read a volume except it be their shasters, which are full of all manner of
I once gave a bramin a copy of the New Testament, and a week or ten days after, asked him how much he had read. He replied that he had read about half. I then. asked him how many pages. Forty, was his reply. I then requested him to show me how much he had read, and it was just one page and a half. The bramins affect so much contempt for Christian books, that their pride prevents their accepting or reading tracts openly. Frequently when I have offered them a tract they would refuse it with scorn, and yet retire a little distance from me and then induce a boy to come to me to get one for them. They affect to be ashamed to have anything to say to a padre, and when asked, Did you get that from a padre ? No, I got it from a boy, would be the reply. They will not allow themselves to be seen listening to a Christian padre; yet such is their curiosity to know what there is in our tracts, that these very bramins seldom fail to read every one that comes within their reach. So common is it for a missionary when he goes among the people to carry a bundle of tracts with him, that it constitutes, in the eyes of the heathen, a badge of his office. We are as well known by our bundle of tracts, as the military officer is by his uniform. The common people are so eager to get them, that they would gather around me whenever I stopped any time in the streets. At their religious festivals I have often taken a stand upon the steps of a Hindoo temple, or within the temple itself, and on seeing my bundle of tracts they would come and listen to my remarks for an hour, and then gratefully receive a tract; whereas, had I given them on their first coming around me, I could not have retained a congregation to preach to.
Our field of labour, sir, in India is great. That wide tract of country lying between the Ganges and the Himalaya mountains, and containing a population of one hundred and fifty millions, is accessible to the missionary; yet the larger part of those millions have never seen a missionary of Jesus Christ. While the labourers are so few, the most those of us who are on the ground can do for those in the interior and remote from our stations, is to send them tracts. In this way the light is spreading. We often find that one of these little messengers of mercy has performed extensive tours in a few months, and as it passed from one pagan to another, and often from one village to another, it has been read with wonder by multitudes. While I was sitting in my study, an old Hindoo from a distance came to the house inquiring for the Jesus Christ man, or the book man, as we are called in India. He said he came to talk about our books. I asked him how he could have heard anything about our books in a place so remote as where he resided. He replied that he had read a tract which was brought there by another Hindoo whom he had met. “The True Atonement” was the title of the tract. The Hindoos believe in numerous atonements. The title of the tract implied that all their atonements were false, and he wished to learn something more about the true doctrine. He had lent the tract to others, until it had been extensively read in his village, and those were also desirous to know more on the subject. I supplied him with tracts and Testaments, and these were carried by him far into the interior, and doubtless are now shedding light on many a darkened mind.
The tracts are generally given away, but sometimes purchased; and there are instances where they are purchased for traffic. Even in such cases we rejoice, as they attach a value to them that gives them circulation, and no doubt often secures the reading of them.
There is one consideration I desire to impress upon the society. We have at present the monopoly of making books in India. The natives cannot print books. They are unacquainted with our art of printing. The presses are all in the hands of Europeans. While we have this advantage, does it not become us to improve it most vigorously, before the enemy shall seize this mighty engine to disseminate tares over that whole country, and thus create new obstacles to the missionary cause, or give a tenfold strength to the obstacles now existing. The crisis is important; the work is great; the labourers are few. I trust, sir, the Tract Society will continue its operations in pagan lands and greatly enlarge them, till light shall break forth over all those wide desolations, giving joy, peace, and hope, to dying millions.
Coast Guard Libraries. From Rev. J. Timpson, Secrctary to the British and Foreign
Sailors' Society. YESTERDAY I received a letter from our sailors' minister, in which he says,
After preaching at Rev. Mr. - at the wife of a revenue officer came to me, and with tears, said, • O sir, did your Society send us those precious books?' I replied, “They all came from our office.' She then expressed her heartfelt gratitude that one book had been blessed to her husband's conversion. On inquiry, I found it was
· Doddridge's Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul;' and Mr. attested that the case was worthy of implicit credit on the testimony of so good authority as this pious and judicious Christian.”
Contemplating the worth of the soul and the influence of a truly pious husband and father, head of a family, it will be difficult or impossible to estimate the importance of the above;
and it cannot but be the means of gratification to you, as it is to myself, that, while all the glory of the good belongs to our gracious God, no small honour has thus been conferred upon us, especially yourself, in providing such means of salvation by the knowledge of our Divine Redeemer.
From a Clergyman in the Isle of Man. ABOUT eight years ago a small Depository was established in Douglas, and I am thankful to say, it is in a very flourishing state. It has disseminated tens of thousands of your publications throughout this island. The greater part of our sunday-schools are supplied with rewards from it.
About fifteen months ago I established a Loan Tract Society in my parish, and the reception it has met with from the parishioners has much more than answered my expectations. I put six or eight small tracts in a book, strongly covered, and about two hundred of these books are in constant circulation. Four ladies took each a different district, and they exchange these small books once a month, and sometimes once a fortnight, and they have mentioned to me that their visits are heartily welcomed by the people. The tracts are read over and over, and the monthly visits are actually in many cases, I understand, longed for by the persons who receive these little messengers of mercy.
that we may
THE temple was framed in Lebanon, and set on Sion : neither hammer nor axe was heard in that holy structure: there was nothing but noise in Lebanon ; nothing in Sion but silence and peace. Whatever tumults are abroad, it is fit there should be all quietness and sweet concord in the church. O God, that the axes of schism, or the hammers of furious contentions, should be heard within thy sanctuary! thine house is not built with blows; with blows it is beaten down. O knit the hearts of thy servånts together in the unity of the Spirit and the bond of peace,
mind and speak the same things; that thou, who art the God of peace, mayest take pleasure to dwell under the quiet roof of our hearts !
Now is the foundation laid, and the walls rising, of that glorious fabric, which all nations admired, and all times have celebrated. Even those stones, which were laid in the base of the building, were not ragged and rude, but hewn and costly: the part that lies covered with earth from the eyes of all beholders, is no less precious than those parts that are more conspicuous. God is not all for the
he pleases himself with the hidden value of the living stones of his spiritual temple. How many noble graces of his servants have been buried by obscurity; not discerned so much as by their own eyes; which yet, as he gave, so he
TRACT MAGAZINE, NO. 50. FEBRUARY, 1838.