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the least of his trials. When travelling in the wilderness without a friend or companion, he was sometimes treated by the Indians in a very barbarous manner, and was not unfrequently in danger even of his life. Both the chiets and the powaws were the determined enemies of Christianity-thé sachems being jealous of their authority, the priests of their gain; and hence they often laid plots for the de. struction of this good man, and would certainly have put him to death, had they not been overawed by the power of the English. Sometimes the chiefs, indeed, thrust him out from among them, saying, " It was impertinent in him to trouble himself with them or their religion, and that should he return again, it would be at his peril,' TO such threatenings he used only to reply, “ That he was engaged in the service of the Great God, and therefore he did not fear them, nor all the sachems in the country, but was resolved to go on with his work, and bade then touch him if they dared.” To manifest their malignity, however, as far as was possible, they banished from their society such of the people as favoured Christianity; and when it might be done with safety, they even put them to death. Nothing, indeed, but the dread of the English prevented them from massacring the whole of the converts; a circumstance which induced some of them to conceal their sentiments, and others to fly to the colonists for protection. Vol. I. pp. 32–33.
- Independently of his active services among the heathen, Eliot accomplished a task so immense and complicated, that to do it with tolerable propriety, might alone well employ all the time of an ordinary man's life. He translated the Old and New Testaments into tlie Indian language; a language the most difficult and unmanageable for such a purpose, that can be imagined, His strength was not spent in vain ; social and moral improvement were generally conspicuous among bis people, and on the hearts of many, we may believe that a true work of conversion was begun and finished under his own eye.
- The most distinguished of Mr. Eliot's contemporaries, survivers, and successors, were the Mayhews,' in Martha's Vineyard, Messrs. Browne, Cotton, Hawley, and Tupper, in New Plymouth, Mr. Serjeant, in New Stockbridge, Mr. Kirkland, among the Oneidas, and above all the humble, simple, fervent, and self-sacrificing David Brainerd, in New Jersey. We reluctantly pass over the multifarious labours of these men, of whom, with the exception of the last, the names are now: scarcely known in Christian churches, and in the world they are either utterly forgotten, or cast out as nought; yet, in the book of life, where they are written, greater honour is attached to sucht names, than has ever redounded to all the kings, and conquerors, and statesmen, and philosophers, and poets, that, from the beginning of time, in exercising their transcendant powers, have sought their own glory, and an earthly immortality.
In reading the history of these zealous witnesses, we were much
affected by the recurrence of the fact, in' every instance, of the rapid decay of the Indian population. Not only the living generations to whom Eliot and others preached, have long since slept with their fathers, but their posterity have dwindled to a few families, or disappeared altogether; and it seems the inevitable destiny of these hapless beings, tribe after tribe, to become extinct as civilization advances into their wildernesses.
The fifth chapter supplies us with narratives of the dissemination of Christianity by the Danes, in two extremes of the globe; in the East Indies, where they possessed only one small colony, and in Greenland, where they claim the undisputed sovereignty of an icy desert, two thousand miles in extent. To the honour of Denmark be it remembered, that the government, in both these cases, have displayed a zeal according to knowledge and a fidelity of purpose, in supporting these Missions, which no other Protestant government can pretend to have rivalled. For nearly a century in Greenland, and more than a century in Tranquebar, they have regularly maintained Christian preachers, who have generally been able, active, conscientious ministers of the Gospel, on the cne hand to the shivering savages under the pole, and on the other to the indolent volaptuaries in the torrid zone. Among the latter, one of the most eminent was the late Mr. Swartí, of whom frequent and honourable mention is made in these days, though a few years ago his mame was unheard of, and the very existence of a Danish Mission at Tranqnebar was scarcely known in this country. In Greenland, the forerunner of the Moravian Brethren was the Rev. Mr. Egede, a man who, in defiance of every discouragement and difficulty at home and at court, began to preach Christ to the miserable natives; and amid hardships and sufferings unimaginable by those who live at ease in their possessions, continued his exertions for inany years. Though his success was apparently small, his labours were duly rewarded by his Master, by whom alone their number and their issue could be estimated.
In relationship to the Missions of the United Brethren, more generally called Moravians, we have had repeated opportunities of bearing testimony to the humbie, patient, and invincible perseverance, with which, in simplicity and fervour of spirit, they serve the Lord Jesus Christ. "For upwards of fifty years these people were little known, or only known by the calumnies circulating against them on their first appearance in this country, and which they answered effectually, by living so that nobody at length believed their traducers. As for their Missions, they were scarcely heard of in Christendom, till their growing prosperity fairly compelled attention from a gazing world ; apd well might the world gaze, when, on the one hand the wilderness
on the grazing world wing pros?
began to rejoice and to blossom like the rose, while, on the other, the mountains brake forth into singing, and the dark places of the earth shone with the glory of the Lord. Then, indeed, were the Brethren's Missions admired, honoured, and imitated; for, by the universal assent of their fellow Christians, they are at this day allowed to have exhibited plans and means of converting the most rugged and refractory heathen, worthy of general acceptation. The records of their early Missions having become exceedingly scarce, Mr. Brown, in his History, supplies succinct views of them, abridged from “ Crantz's Greenland ;" ¢6 the History of the Brethren," “ Loskiel's North America," and the “ Periodical Accounts.”
We shall give one extract from the section concerning Greenland, because it affords us an opportunity of making a very important remark.
• In 1750, when the Greenlanders removed from their tents into their winter houses, they amounted to upwards of three hundred, and the number who had been baptized, within little more than eleven years, was no fewer than two hundred and fifty-six. In that part of the country, it was formerly deemed impossible for two families to find subsistence ; yet this great number of persons not only subsisted, but were able to afford relief to those who were in need, though there had been such famines in other places, almost every year, that even where provision used to be most plentiful, many had died of want, Some of the savages from Kangek had lately buried an old man alive, and when they were called to an account for their conduct, they pleaded, in excuse, that it was done at' his daughter's request, because he had got a putrid hand, and could do nothing for his own support! The Christian Greenlanders had never been reduced to such extremity, for they had learned not only to pray, but to work, and even to be good economists. They now, indeed, enjoyed great advantages for the preservation of their provisions, in the store. houses which were lately erected for the use of them and the mis. sionaries. Christian David, when he was in Greenland, with the new church, observed the need which they had for some accommodation of this kind, as for want of it their dried meat, fish, capelins, and other articles, which they preserved under heaps of stones, were often either half-devoured by the foxes and ravens, or reduced to a state of putrefaction, and this was apt to be succeeded by scarcity or infectious disorders. He had, therefore, returned some time ago, with suitable materials, and erected a large store-house for the Greenlanders, and a small one, together with a wood-house, for the missionaries. Vol. I. pp. 384-385.
Here is exhibited a striking example of the effects of Christianity on the temporal condition of savages; it civilizes, it enriches, it enlightens, it exalts them as social beings. The wisdom of man says, First civilize barbarians, and then chris• tianize them; and the wisdom of man has proved itself foolishness in every experiment of the kind which it has made, though it must be confessed, that it has been too prudent or tog selfish to make many. The wise counsel of God is very dif, ferent. This says, Go and preach the gospel to the Gentiles, whe, ther Greeks or barbarians; if to the latter, you will civilize them by so doing, and just in proportion as they are christianized, they will be civilized. No motives less powerful than conviction of sin, fear of hell, faith in Christ as a Saviour, his love shed abroad in their hearts, and hope of everlasting life; no motives less powerful than these can command attention from fierce, obstinate, sensual savages, to plans of civilization, much less wean them from their roving, indolent, cruel habits, and make them stationary, social, gentle, self-denying, humble beings. If there be an instance to the contrary, in all the intercourse of Europeans with untutored Pagans in Asia, Africa, or America, let it be produced as a confutatiou of our remark; but instances in confirmation of it may be produced in every quarter of the globe, among Greenlanders, Esquimaux, Indians, Negroes, and Hottentots. If the Danes and Moravians had perseveringly endeavoured first to humanize, and then to convert the Greenlanders, by teaching them letters, economy, and arts, the work of conversion would have been unbegun at this day! Thousands of these poor people, now, we trust, in glory, would have gone out of the world, unchanged in this life, and unprepared for the future eternal world, by any knowledge of the Gospel of peace; and instead of Greenland being, as we readily believe it to be, the most Christian country on the face of the earth, scarcely a trace of idolatry being left, and almost all the people being truly taught of God, by faithful ministers, it would still liave been a coast of barren rocks and islets, engirdled with tempestuous seas, and thinly haunted, rather than inhabited, by a species of human beings, less enviable in their temporal condition than the seals, and bears, and sea-fowl, on which they preyed, and more miserable than these, inasmuch as the grave itself would have offered no refuge to them, as immortal beings, from the evils of life.
We mention Greenland particularly, because the plan of reformation, by teaching the natives useful arts and moral lessons, was tried for a while, and to a sufficient extent, both by Mr. Egede, and the first Moravian missionaries, to prove its utter impotence to reclaim a single adult savage from his rude habits and his hideous superstition; whereas, by preaching the love and the sufferings of Christ, in plain and simple terms, and publishing “ redemption in his blood” alone, the Gospel, after a progress of four-score years, may now be said to have completely triumphed over the hearts and manners of this obdurate race: they are christianized almost without exception, and so far civilized, that in proportion to the population of each country, there are, probably, in Greenland mare persons who can read, than in Britain. It is true, that in the former there is scarcely a man to a square league of wilderness; but the victory of the cross bas, for that very reason, been the more signal. The few inhabitants were scattered in solitary families along a coast of two thousand miles, and there was not such a thing as a village in the whole country ; yet have these wanderers been gathered into one fold, under one Shepherd, in a spiritual sense ; and those of them who belong to the Moravian Brethren, are settled in three pleasant neighbourhoods, at the distance of several hundred miles from each other, where they live together in true Christian fellowship.
. Dr. Brown next gives some account of the Methodist Missions in the West Indies. There, indeed, Mr. Wesley's followers have been eminently instrumental in bringing thousands of Negro Slaves into the liberty of the Gospel. Among other heathens, this class of Christians have perhaps done less than might have been expected from their known zeal and activity at home, and in North America. It seems probable, however, that in the course of a few years, they will not be behind the most zealous of their contemporaries, as teachers of the Gentiles, The recent tidings from their friends in the Island of Ceylon, where a native Budha Priest has been the first fruit of their evangelical labours, promise, at least to our hopes, a great harvest of good.
Then, follow accounts of the interesting and astonishing labours of the Baptists, both in the conversion of souls and in the translation of the Scriptures. In the conversion of souls, considering the time, and the circumstances of the people among whom they are domesticated, they have done as much as any of their forerunners in India; but with respect to the translation of the Scriptures, they have absolutely done more than all their fore-runners and fellow-labourers, either in India or in any other part of the world. For this work they seem to have been especially sent out; and on them there has been poured such a spirit of grace and power to accomplish it, that it may truly be said, the gift of tongues has been extraordinarily, though not miraculously, bestowed upon them. Their proceedings are so generally known, and so fully approved among other denominations of Christians, that we need not further enlarge upon their successes.
Our Author, in detailing the romantic and multifarious history of the first experiments, or adventures as they might be called, of the London Missionary Society, has not spared the errors of good men full of zeal, and altogether unexperienced in the work which they undertook to direct; iur the apostacy of false brethren employed by them in the execution of their