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company me, and his Spirit grant me wide success. The prospect of leaving my friends and connexions for so distant a place as Liverpool, and especially as many of them oppose the plan, sometimes fill me with melancholy gloom ; but thy will be done' is a petition that well becomes me in my situation ; may I have grace given me to use it with a sincere and believing heart.
." I trust it will appear, that the general good of the church of Christ, and of the inhabitants of Liv. erpool, is the object to which I have directed my warm and unremitting exertions. Farewell. 6 1 remain sincerely your's,
66 THOMAS SPENCER.”
To this may be added an extract from'a letter, dated September 1st, 1810.
“ My mind still inclines to Liverpool, and that for the most substantial reasons. If I accept this inyitation, I shall be obliged to make some sacrifices; but ought I not to make them cheerfully, when the honour of God, and the happiness of immortal souls require them ? especially as I am bound not to count even my life dear unto me, so that I may finish
my course with joy. The sacrifices to which I allude are chiefly, perhaps altogether, occasioned by absence from my friends and connexions, and a removal from those interesting scenes of exertion which have witnessed my first efforts to disseminate divine truth, and in which I have been favoured with some success.”
Thus happily was a point of so much importance to the interests of religion in Liverpool determined. A consideration of the issue of this affair, together with many others perpetually occurring, should teach us to suspend our judgments of persons and places we have never seen-and should tend to we en those unjust and injurious prejudices against them which we too hastily form—too tenaciously cherish. Often we picture to ourselves the most enchanting scenes, the most delightful associations, in connexion with a spot we are about to visit, and are disappointed—ånd as often we find those charming scenes, and happy associations, in regions whiclt our prejudices had invested with every thing gloomy and repulsive. Had Spencer yielded to the impulse of his feelings, he had never become pastor of a church in Liverpool. And although the memory of his lamented fate may induce, from feelings generally regarded as honourable to humanity, a wish that he had not yet the Christian sees in this the hand of God—and, contemplating the mighty work which in his short ministry he was honoured to perform, rejoices that, however mysterious the decree, it was ordered so.
It is not for us to calculate whether he would have been more useful, or less useful, or as useful elsewhere he was eminently useful in Liverpool -and though all must weep that he should be so soon, so suddenly removed yet none who witness the extraordinary impression which his labours produced in so large and populous a town, but must rejoice in their success, and adore the Providence which brought him there.
Nor was it from the want of other calls that Mr. Spencer was induced to accept that which he received from Liverpool. Many were the churches which desired to enjoy lis valuable ministry : amongst others, the following places may be named -Kidderminster, Kentish Town, Jewin-street, Wor. thing, Southampton, and Tonbridge Chapel.
This last-mentioned chapel is a reeently ereeted building, in the New-Road leading from Pentonville to Paddington, near London-in a populous, respectable, and increasing neighbourhood. During its erection, an impression was encouraged, both on Mr. Spencer's mind and that of the surrounding inhabitants, that he would probably be the preacher. The idea was not at all unpleasant to him. In most respects the arrangement met his wishes; and he had even laid the plan on which he resolved to act, provided his expectations had been realized. He purposed to reside a few miles out of town, to prevent the dissipation of his time, and to come to London on certain days to visit his people. He expect. ed much gratificatiou from the neighbourhood of his friend and fellow-student, the Rev. S. Haslock, minister of Kentish Town chapel, with whom he hoped to unite in plans of usefulness for their vieinity. But circumstances did not conspire to call into exereise those judieious and benevolent designs.
The chapel was opened early in November, 1810 ; and on Sunday, the 18th, he preached his first sermon there. It was in allusion to its recent opening, founded on Heb. X. 19-22. After the congregation was dismissed, he went over the whole building, the plan of which pleased him much. He was par. ticularly delighted with the deep front gallery, which by exhibiting a multitude of attentive faces, encouraged him, he said, in his preaching. In that chapel he frequently addressed large and deeply interested auditories-and in that pulpit a public trib. ute of respect was paid to his memory in a funeral sermon, delivered by the Rev. Richard Slate, minis. ter of Stand, near Manchester. *
From the period of his acceptance of the call to Liverpool, till February, 1811, when he actually entered on the pastoral office there, his time was wholly occupied in the diligent pursuit of his studies, and the labours of the pulpit. Not a Sabbath passed, but witnessed twice or thrice his faithful publication of the gospel of peace. On Sunday, the 26th of August, he revisited Dorking-a spot endeared to him by the beauty of its scenery-but more by the memory of those happy hours, which introduced him to the knowledge and esteem of a most beloved and valued friend.
The first Sabbath in November he spent at Brighton, where he preached three times in the pulpit of the Rev. Mr. Styles.
Returning to town he continued preaching in and about London till the close of the year, when he again visited Brighton, at which place he entered on the year 1811—the last of his life.
* Mr. Slate was formerly a fellow-student with Mr. Spen.
He was supplying the pulpit at Tonbridge chapel in the autumn of 1811, the period of Mr. Spencer's death. His discourse is founded on John v. 35, “ He was a burning and a shining light. It was afterwards published--and has reached a second edition. The sentiments it breathes are honourable to the author's character as a man, a Christian, and a friend
In what way his mind was exercised during this period—and how his principles as a Christian triamphed over his feelings as a man in the prospect of a long and painful separation from those he lov. ed-may be seen by the following letter to a friend in Liverpool
Hoxton, December 5th, 1910.
MY DEAR SIR,
“ I am persuaded that you will excuse my neglecting to write to you so long, when you recolleet that the hope 1 daily entertained of seeing you in town appeared to represent my tronbling you with an epistle as unnecessary. I am extremely pleased to hear of the increase and welfare of your family ; I cannot but feel an interest in their prosperity and happiness : may the Lord pour his Spirit upon your seed, and his blessing upon your offspring, that they may spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water courses ! I suppose I need not inform you, that I anticipate my journey to Liverpool with mingled emotions of mind. The idea of a long and painful separation from my connexions does certainly at times overwhelm me with melancholy gloom ; I have not yet learned to conquer my feelings, nor am I particularly eminent for philosophie heroism. The idea that I am going where divine Providence has directed me, does occasionally impart to me strong consolation ; may my wishes as to extensive