« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
Jerusalem ? Of this latter position there is no proof whatever; no mention is made of the fellowship; none of any ordinary collection; no necessary allusion to any church-fund or treasury, though, without doubt, treasury, fund, and ordinary collection were then existant.
What the text proves is, that the apostle called for weekly storing for a special object and for a given time, and that each should lay up by itself or himself according as he had been prospered. The enquiry, then, embraces three distinctly different positions—1. Did each contributor store by himself (keep in his own possession) his weekly contributions, ready for the coming of the apostles ? 2. Were the contributions of each member, for this particular purpose, laid up in the keeping of the church, thus forming a fund by itself, and waiting the arrival of Paul ? 3. Were the weekly contributions cast into the ordinary and common funds of the church? If the last of the three could be proved, then stated weekly contribution, as a church ordinance, could be demonstrated by approved example. But that is exactly what the case does not prove. The contribution enjoined by Paul was for a special object. To cast the proceeds every week into the common treasury of the church might have left him, at his coming, to find that the whole had been expended in meeting the ordinary and special requirements of the Corinthian brethren. The speciality of the case required what is expressed in the text-storing by itself, so that all the sums contributed for that particular object would be appropriated to it. We are, then, left to decide between each one storing by himself and the many laying up their contributions, for the Jerusalem saints, as a separate fund (by itself) in the custody of the church. The most literal reading of the text indicates personal storing for that special object. But against that view it is argued that the very thing Paul wished to prevent would then be absolutely needful—that is, gatherings after his arrival. But this is scarcely correct. It would certainly be needful, in that case, for the individual storers to bring the amounts they had laid aside, but that would scarcely warrant the application of the word "gatherings," as, at most, it would be but a gathering. Two things Paul no doubt desired to prevent--1 The gathering together, by each, of such portions of income as the poorer classes have to deal with when they raise any considerable donation. 2. Having to wait, after his arrival, for a series of stated collections, which would no doubt have been requisite had previous weekly storing not been resorted to. “Gatherings," in this sense, would have been completely prevented by each member laying up by himself such portion of income as he might deem proper to devote for that purpose. But if any prefer to conclude (taking all the facts into view) that the many amounts were deposited every week in the keeping of the church, as & fund by itself, for this special object, let it be so. What then does the fact establish? That the Holy Spirit has approved weekly contribution for church purposes, and that, therefore, to attend to the fellowship (contributively) on every first day of the week cannot be wrong, and that it carries with it Divine approval. But nothing further is thereby established—that is to say, nothing in the direction of compelling all contribution to be made on that day and in immediate connection with the breaking of the bread, so as to render it improper to contribute, or to arrange to receive contributions, at other times. In these particulars we are without law and must not, therefore, seek to enforce our preferences upon others. Where there is no law there is no transgression.
The fellowship is a Divine institution. The weekly appropriation of our substance for the relief of brethren in need has apostolic sanction.
Observer, Sept. 1, 71.
Both are as completely adapted to present circumstances as they were to those of the days of the apostles. No possible arrangement can be more expedient. Let, then, each church and every member, so far as is possible, attend to the fellowship every Lord's day, in connection with the breaking of the bread, providing means to receive contributions at other times from those who cannot then be present, and let all who cannot present the offering on any given Lord's day store up by itself what would have been given till the opportunity arrives for presenting the whole.
A BRAHMIN'S TESTIMONY TO THE VALUE OF THE
M.R CHAMBERLAIN, of the Arcot (India) Mission, having secured the erection of a building for a free reading room at his station, Mudnapilly, reports in the Sower an occurrence of much interest, thus:
An incident occurred this (Wednesday evening which has made a profound impression on my mind. At the close of the lecture, which was attentively listened to by an audience of one hundred and eighty, composed of Brahmins, merchants, farmers, artisans, officials and students, and which I concluded with a short prayer, as I took my hat to come away, a Brahmin, one of the best educated in the place, arose and politely asked permission to say a word, He said :
“Behold that mango tree on yonder roadside. Its fruit is approaching to ripeness. Bears it that fruit for itself, or for its own profit ? From the moment the first ripe fruits turn their yellow sides toward the morning sun until the last mango is pelted off, it is assailed with showers of sticks and stones, from boys, and men, and every passer-by, until it stands þereft of leaves, with branches knocked off, and bleeding from many a broken twig. And piles of stone underneath, and clubs and sticks lodged in its boughs are the only trophies of its joyous crop of fruit. Is it discouraged ? Does it cease to bear fruit ? Does it say, if I am barren no one will pelt me and I shall live in peace? Not at all. The next season the budding leaves, the beautiful flowers, the tender fruit again appear. Again it is pelted, and broken, and wounded, but it goes on bearing, and children's children pelt its branches and enjoy its fruit.
" That is a type of these missionaries. I have watched them well and have seen what they are. What do they come to this country for ? What tempts them to leave their parents, friends and country, and come to this, to them, unhealthy climate ? Is it for gain or profit that they come ? Some of us country clerks in government offices receive more salary than they. Is it for the sake of an easy life? See how they work, and then
No. They seek, like the mango tree, to bear fruit for the benefit of others, and that though treated with contumely and abuse from those they are benefitting.
“Now look at this missionary. He came here a few years ago, leaving all and seeking only our good. He was met with cold looks and suspicious glances, and was shunned, and avoided, and maligned. He sought to talk with us of what he told us was the matter of most importance in heaven or earth, and we would not listen ; but he was not discouraged. He started a dispensary, and we said, Let the pariahs take his medicines, we won't ; but in the time of our sickness, and distress, and fear, we had to go to him, and he healed us. We complained if he walked through our Brahmin streets; but ere long, when our wives and daughters were in sickness and
Observer, Sept. 1, 71.
anguish, we went and begged him to come even into our inner apartments, and he came, and our daughters and wives smile upon us in health. Has he made any money by it ? Even the cost of the medicines has not been returned to him.
" And now, in spite of our opposition, he has bought this site, and built this beautiful room, and furnished it with the choicest of lore in many languages, and put in it newspapers and periodicals which were inaccessible to us before, but which help us now to keep up with the world around us and understand passing events; and he has placed here tables to write on, and chairs to sit in, and lamps for us to read and write by in the evenings. And what does he get for all this? Does he make money by this free reading room? Why, we don't even pay for the lamp oil consumed night by night as we read.
“ Now what is it makes him do all this for us? It is his Bible. I've looked into it a good deal, at one time and another, in the different languages I chance to know. It is just the same in all languages. The Bible—there is nothing to compare with it in all our sacred books for goodness, and purity, and holiness, and love, and for motives of action. Where did the English speaking people get all their intelligence, and energy, and cleverness, and power? It is their Bible that gives it to them. And now they bring it to us and say, “This is what raised us, take it and rise yourselves.' They do not force it upon us, as the Mohammedans used to their Koran, but they bring it in love, and translate it into our languages, and lay it before us and say, 'Look at it. Read it.
Read it. Examine it, and see if it is not good.' Of one thing I am convinced. Do what we will, oppose it as we may, it is the Christian's Bible that will sooner or later work the regeneration of this land.”
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF CHURCHES IN ENGLAND, SCOTLAND, IRELAND AND WALES THE Conference was held in the meeting house of the church in Huddersfield, situate in Bradford Road. The first session commenced on Tuesday evening, August 8, at six o'clock. The numbers attending the several sessions were considerable, including members from Wigan, Birmingham, Liverpool, Whitehaven, Manchester, Southport, Carlisle, Ashton, London, Dungannon, Wortley, Leeds, Nottingham, Loughborough, Leicester, Brighton, Edinburgh, Blackburn, Bolton, Langley, Stockport, Newcastle, Lincoln, Bradford, Wakefield, etc., etc.
The meeting having been constituted by prayer and praise, G. Y. Tickle, of Liverpool, was voted to the presidency, and G. H. Smith and E. Fraser were chosen as Secretaries. The following resolution was then unanimously adopted
That a Committee of Reference be now appointed, to which shall be committed, for consideration and report, any matter of difficulty the settlement of which would, in the opinion of the meeting, be thus facilitated. That all communications addressed to the Annual Meeting by districts, committees, societies, persons, or churches other than those churches recognised by the last Annual Meeting, be referred to said committee. And that all proposals to sustain evangelists from the General Fund, not already sanctioned by the Annual Meeting, be referred to the same committee.
And that the appointment of a committee for these purposes take place at the first sitting of each annual gathering until otherwise resolved.
The Evangelist Committe of last year, with the addition of D. King, R. Black and W. Perkins, were then appointed a committee for the pur
Observer, Sept. 1, "71.
poses of the foregoing resolution. The next business was that of reading the
CONTENTS OF SCHEDULES. 1. Immersed during the year.
7. Transferred to Sister Churches. 2. Received from Sister Churches
8. Removed to where there are no Churches 3. Received having been formerly Immersed 9. Emigrated. 4. Restored to Fellowship.
10. Present number of Members. 5. Departed this life.
11. Number of Teachers. 6. Separated.
12. Number of Scholars.
10 100 17 120
9 1 2
207 3 145
58 1 31
14 85 21 96 61
5 21 28
Charles Henry-st. 14
Icknield Port Rd. 6
15 London-Camden Town
11 Oldham Piltdown
21 83 10
:ܝ.: : : : : : : : : :ܝܙ : : : : : : :ܝܕܝܕ :ܛ : : : : : : : : : :ܛ :ܢܕ :ܨܕ
58 90 32
117 2 104
9 1 19
45 30 172 27 134 22 74 6
1 1 1
32 20 59 35 30 16 13
67 1 82
4 2 3
16 | 11
16 36 16
: : : : : : : : : ܟܨ ܟܨ ܟ : : : : : : : : :ܝ
England. Radcliffe Colliery.... Ruddington (Notts.) St. Helens... Southport
2 Spittal, B'wick-on-Tw'd Saughall
9 Dornock Dundee
2 Dumfries Edinburgh Findochty... Frazerburgh. Glasgow Grangemouth Kirkcaldy Montrose New Pit Sligo Peikie Mill (by St. And.). Portsea (nr. Banff). Sanquhar Turriff