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-first and constantly at the model Church set up by the Apostles on the authority of the Lord; next, at churches which have largely restored the ways of the Apostles; then, at churches not so far advanced in the return journey to Jerusalem; lastly, to churches which cannot be restored but must await the doom pronounced upon Mystic Babylon.

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But why direct attention to the assemblies of this fourfold division? To the first, that we may know it, walk in its ways, commend it to others, and reflect its clear light over the path of those who feel the need of a better order of things; to the second, that we may help them to "progress IN true Christianity, and to warn them against 66 progress OUT of it, whether under the plea of liberality or charity or other specious modifications of divine appointments with a view to worldly aid; to the third, not to carp at defects, but to observe and rejoice over whatever growth in the good and the true prevalent uneasiness may develop, and to encourage others by recording the same; to the fourth, that we may call attention to evident decadence, fulfilling the prophetic Word, and preparatory to fore-ordained destruction by the out-shining of His coming, Whose revelation from heaven is only a question of time.

The Ecclesiastical Observer will not stand for the defence of church or people, further than they stand to the truth and exemplify it in practical goodness. A right form with a wrong spirit will have less favour than a right spirit and a wrong form. On the other hand neither of these combinations of right and wrong will meet with favour. "This ye should have done and not have left the other undone " must be the standing lesson.

No topic of real interest to the followers of the Lord Jesus is excluded. But on this head and also as to appropriate limitations of controversy, the reader will please see next issue.


To the Editor of the E O.-Dear Sir,-Have you seen the remarkable letter of the African explorer, Stanley, in the Daily Telegraph, of November 15th. Therein he shows there is a splendid opening in Central Africa fapreaching the Gospel, planting churches on New Testn. ment ground, and introducing European civilizatiore His account of his visit to the king of Uganda is hein worth reading. Churches of New Testament order or this country have long pleaded for a complete return to the teaching and example of Christ and the Apostles, but have not sent an evangelist to preach the Gospel to any portion of the eight hundred millions of heathens, who are sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death. I am now writing to suggest that these churches (Great Britain) should send a company of Christian men (and if desirable their families with them) to preach the grand old Gospel in its New Testament simplicity and fulness to lhe people ol Uganda. The company selected should include a carpenter, a black

smith, a tailor, a man who understands practical farming, one or two preachers, and, if possible, a competent dayschool teacher, male or female, or one of each, with farming implements, joiner's and blacksmith's tools, outfit, &c. £800 or £1000 would be sufficient to put such an undertaking into working order. If this proposal is taken up I undertake to raise one-tenth of either of the above sums, and I know two or three suitable men who will volunteer. W. HINDLE.

We like the suggested plan of missionary work; not being sure that one or two of the party need be looked upon as preachers. Send those only who can preach and work, and who are willing to do both. Then we do not look upon the ground as so completely open as the writer sees it. The State Church has engaged to enter upon it, and Christianity, according to the New Testament, would find no favour in the eyes of their agents. If now, or at any time, such a mission were undertaken, there should be the utmost care in selecting the persons. Mere zeal would not do. Every person sent out must be well tested, and known as fitted for the work. ED.

Editorial Notices.

FREE DISTRIBUTION FUND.-Pages would be requisite to print the letters of approval of changes now effected in the E. O., particularly as to free distribution. Numerous donations and promises are to hand. The names of the donors will be given in our next, and the committee will forward at the close of the year to each subscriber of £1 or more, a full account of income and disbursement. Notwithstanding this considerable approval and response, we think that many have not an adequate idea of the extent to which it is needful to extend the work in order to the contemplated and desirable results. We ask to be enabled to forward free of cost 1,000 copies every fortnight to carefully-selected persons, in addition to our paid circulation. This will require for the year donations to the amount of £200. Will the friends who have not yet responded hasten up in view of the realisation of this object. All communications for the committee to be addressed to the Editor.

Too MUCH MONEY.-We send post free for the year to any part of Great Britain for 4s. To Australia, America, and Canada the charge, post free, is 5s. The last-named sum is sent by several home subscribers. In each case we shall enter the surplus to the credit of the sender.

AUSTRALIAN SUBSCRIBERS who have forwarded only 4s. will please let us have the extra 1s., as it will cost us the full half of their present payment for postage.

MILLIGAN ON HEBREWs.-This volume of the New Testament is now ready, uniform with the vol. on Matthew and Mark, and at about the same price. We are sending for a number, and will supply in the rotation in which orders come to hand.

PAYMENTS RECEIVED to December 20:-J. T. Alexander, J. Donald, G. Dean, Jas. Barton (N. Z.) J. T. Love (N. Z.), J. Leavesley, J. Humphreys, J. W. Donaldson, W. Ferguson, C. W. Frail, E. Barker, S. P. Edwards, T. Young, T. H. Vernon, W. Auchinachie, R. Cruikshank, J. Peet, Thomas Kaye, G. Slee, Thomas Wallis, J. Mather (U. S.), S. Oliver, W. Geddes (Mel.), Wm. Turner, R. Still, W. T. Forsyth, D. Galbraith, J. Evans, J. A. Dawson, W. Andrew, W. Walker, M. A. Lee, W. Balmfirth, A. Paton, R. Gregory, A. Cameron, W. Christie, C. E. Ince, W. Stainthorpe, H. Clarke, J. Williamson, R. Metcalf, W. Mortimer, W. Hindle, R. Taylor, W. Smith (Kent), Thomas Barlow, B. Hutchison, R. Mead, G. Gray (N. Z.), R. Taylor (N. Z.), W. Cullen (N. Z.), R. Rickell, J. Davidson, Wm. Ford, G. Robertson, J. Finlayson, J. Walker, W. Henderson, R. Todd, J. North.

Training Fund: Wm. Davies.

Observer, Jan. 1, '76.




THE Church," in the language of the Holy Spirit, is called "The Church of God;" the Saviour also put His name upon it, saying, "My Church;" and Paul wrote, "Christ and His Church." The "His" and "My," indicating ownership, give us, as a New Testament idea, "The Church of Christ."

The word Church is not found in the Old Testament. In the "Gospel of Matthew" it only occurs three times, and in the other "Gospels" not at all. Before the Resurrection of the Lord the Church is never spoken of as a fact. "The Lord added to the Church daily' (Acts ii. 47) is the first intimation of its actual existence. It was then a new institution, not merely so in point of time, but sui generis. Nothing of the kind had ever before been known. Abraham knew it not. Moses was unacquainted with it. John the Baptist never entered it. The Lord Jesus pointed to it as future, and, so far as we are informed, only named it on two occasions. To His Apostles He said (Matt. xvi. 13-18), " Whom say ye that I am?" And Simon Peter answered and said, "Thou are the Christ, the Son of the living God." And Jesus answered and said unto him, "Blessed art thou Simon Bar-Jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, thou art Peter [a stone], and upon this rock I will build My Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." We stay not to enquire whether the Church is founded upon the confession thus made by Peter, or upon the person confessed; nor need we question as to Peter himself, for we learn that the household of God "are built upon the foundation of THE Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone. In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord" (Eph. ii. 20, 21). The Apostles are honoured with a a place in the foundation, as stones thereof. The rock is not Peter but the chief corner stone, "Jesus Christ Himself," not as unpreached but as revealed, proclaimed, and demonstrated by His Apostles, the prophets of the new dispen


When the Saviour addressed Peter, in the foregoing words, the Church was not, nor had it ever been. The oft-repeated plea that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were members of the Church of Christ is unscriptural and contrary to fact. Before the death of Jesus the foundation of His Church had not been laid. In Zion, a tried stone and a rejected stone was to be laid. That stone was not rejected by the Jewish builders

till they cried, " Away with this man and release unto us Barabbas," "requiring that he might be crucified," calling His blood upon themselves and upon their children. They rejected Him. God tried Him, proved Him and beheld Him perfect. But the proof was not complete, the testing not over, till His last word from the cross was uttered. Then the corner stone was laid in the sepulchre of Joseph; but not there and so was He laid as the foundation rock of His Church, which could not, even in its first inbuilding, rest upon a dead Christ. No! There could be no Church yet. He arose, ascended to heaven, poured out the Holy Spirit on the Pentecost next following. Then the confession of Peter was proclaimed by the Spirit, from his lips, and that day three thousand living stones were set upon the God-given foundation. In an important sense the Church was thus founded upon the Messiahship of Jesus, as confessed by Peter, and then first publicly proclaimed in Zion. Years afterward Peter alluded to that day, to its glorious events, as "the beginning" (Acts xi. 15). Converts were from that time added to the Church, which was no more spoken of as to come, but as present wherever disciples were gathered into the name of Jesus and His ordinances regarded. That day was a day of wonders. Old things passed away and were replaced by new-there was a new covenant, a new life, a new birth, a new death, a new burial, a new resurrection, a new hope, a new brotherhood, a new kingdom, a new Church, and a new and most affluent outpouring of, and baptism in, the Holy Spirit.

THE NEW COVENANT was established upon better promises. "For if the first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been found for the second." But "finding fault with them, He saith, Behold the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. Not according to the covenant which I made with their fathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, because they continued not in my covenant and I regarded them not, saith the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put My laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts; and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to Me a people. And they shall not teach every man his neighbour and every man his brother, saying know the Lord; for all shall know Me from the least unto the greatest." The old covenant embraced the flesh and not the spirit. Under the new covenant the flesh profiteth nothing. By the old covenant every one born of the flesh of Abraham was included;

the new covenant only embraces those who possess the faith of the father of the faithful, and that irrespective of natural descent. A covenant based upon flesh, must, of necessity, have included two classes of persons: those who know the Lord, and those who, by reason of tender age, must yet be taught concerning Him ere they can know Him. The new covenant mediated upon the day of Pentecost, abolished this duality and confined the covenantees to those who know the Lord, so that within the bounds of the covenant, within the kingdom of God's dear Son, within the Church of Jesus, all know Him from the least unto the greatest, the parties to this covenent being those, and those only, who "confess with the mouth the Lord Jesus," and believe in their heart "that God hath raised Him from the dead."

A NEW LIFE. Under the old covenant there were men who loved God; men of a higher spiritual life than their neighbours. But it was not till God was manifest in flesh, and had demonstrated that He "so loved the world as to give His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life," that the Gospel, which is the "power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth, could reach the heart of man in that full transforming power, indicated by the words," "I have begotten you by the Gospel." "Of His own will begat He us with the Word of Truth that we should be a kind of fresh fruits of His creatures." "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." There came then, on this day of wonders, into operation that new and higher force which drew men closer to God and made them more thoroughly partakers of the Divine Nature. They were by the Gospel, never preached till then, begotten again, begotten from above, begotten of God, and thus became possessed of a new and higher life.

A NEW BIRTH. Life is not birth. We live before we are born. Birth changes the state of previously living beings. The Saviour's words are "Except a man is born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." (John iii. 5.) By the Spirit the truth is given, authenticated and, consequently, believed. Whoever then is begotten by the Truth,, or Gospel, is begotten by the Spirit. The out-come of such from the water completes the birth of Water and the Spirit, and is, therefore, called the washing or bath of regeneration (Titus iii. 5); equivalent to the bath of the kingdom, and appropriately so, because by its means the previously begotten are translated into the

Kingdom of God's dear Son. Col. i. 13).

Observer, Jan. 1, '76.

(Eph. v. 26;

A NEW DEATH. "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death." (Rom. vi. 3.) Here we have death by substitution. The sinner is under sentence of death. But Christ has died FOR sinners. Those only can be "baptized into Jesus Christ" who have faith in Him. All who are thus baptized into Him are baptized into His death. His death is imputed to them as their sin was laid on Him. "He being made sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.

A NEW BURIAL. "Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism." (Rom. vi. 6.) The baptism of John was, like that of the new dispensation, an immersion in water and, therefore, a burial; but the subjects of it were not in that burial "buried with Him." Neither their faith nor their baptism brought them into His death. They were under the old covenant and had still to do with its oft-repeated sacrifices, which could not take away sin; the ONE sacrifice had not been offered; the death had not been died, and, therefore, they could not be buried into it. The day of Pentecost revealed a new burial.

A NEW RESURRECTION was therewith associated. "Wherein also we are risen with Him." (Col. i. 12.) As He was raised from the dead, we are not left in the grave of water, but rise therefrom to "walk in newness of life." (Rom. vi. 4.)

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A NEW HOPE. How far, or how clearly, the Jews saw into the future life we may be unable to determine, and our present purpose does not require us to enter upon the enquiry, as whatever they were able to apprehend was surpassed by the new hope. Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew. Him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is. every man that hath this hope in Him purifieth himself, even as He is pure.' (1 John iii. 1, 2.) This is the hope of the Church, not that of the Jew. The ancient people looked forward and saw some shadowy outline. The Church beholds the glory. 'Our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able to even subdue all things unto Himself." (Phil. iii.)



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A brotherhood of

Observer, Jan. 1, '76.


twice-born people. The world has never seen nor conceived the like. The pure, believing, loving multitude were the marvel of the age.

A NEW KINGDOM. Another dispensation of the Kingdom which was before-taken away from that people and given to another-as the present will be followed by the higher and everlasting dispensation thereof, when the faithful subjects, now joint-heirs, shall inherit the kingdom, into which flesh and blood cannot enter.

A NEW CHURCH. New in form, designation, membership, blessings, hope, duties, destiny; "raised up together, and made to sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus; that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness towards us through Christ Jesus." (Eph. ii. 6.)

A NEW BAPTISM IN THE SPIRIT. The Spirit of God had in former ages been upon and in men working mighty deeds, but none were said to have been baptized in the Spirit. That fulness of bestowal had never before been granted; nor had the Spirit ever been bestowed as an abiding guest, never to leave the temple of God till the Lord Himself should come again. Yet this was realized on the Beginning day of the Church; and from that day till now the Church remains "built upon the foundation of Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ Himself the chief cornerstone; in whom all the building groweth up to a holy temple in the Lord; in whom we are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit." (Eph. ii. 20).



I-That each of the two disputants shall not only aim at disproving so much of the doctrine of the other as he deems unscriptural, but shall endeavour to establish his own.

II. That the letters shall be short, and, so far as possible, each argument shall be disposed of before another is introduced; that the number of letters be not predetermined; and that intimation of intention not to proceed further shall not be claimed as indicative of failure on the side from which it comes.

III.-That during the discussion no third party shall interfere therewith.

IV.—That when concluded either disputant shall be at liberty to reprint in any form.

V.-That the discussion shall be preceded by a brief preliminary statement, in which each disputant shall give the doctrine held by himself, and the churches generally with which he stands connected.


1.-The remission or pardon of sins is received by the repentant sinner whenever he believes in the Lord Jesus.


2.-Baptism is an ordinance of God (enjoined upon every disciple of Jesus) emblematical and symbolical, in which the great truths of the Gospel and their reception by the believer are proclaimed but not accomplished. 3.-That the pardon of sins is not dependent upon baptism, but is bestowed irrespective of the administration of that rite. H. M'I.

1. Baptism (instituted by the Saviour) is the immer. sion, in water, of repentant believers; and its design, or purpose, includes the remission of sins, change of state, and consequent change of relationship_to_the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. D. K.


The Remission or Pardon of Sins is received' by the repentant sinner whenever he believes in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Forgiveness, 'tis a joyful sound,
To rebel sinners doomed to die,
Publish the bliss the world around,
Ye seraphs shout it from the sky.


All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. The law of God, whether written in His word or in the mind and conscience, tells us His will, and every transgression of the law is sin, and the wages of sin is death. Yet God has in all ages declared himself to be merciful and gracious. With Him there has ever been forgiveness he might be feared, and plenteous redemption that he might be sought unto. Every breach of the law, as given by Moses, had its corresponding penalty, and for many of these offences the penalty was death-" He shall surely be put to death." Under the old covenant the fearer of God was in a chronic pain from the continual struggle with sin. He hoped indeed in the word of the living God, but it was not clearly revealed how God could be just and yet a Saviour, but with a faith which is a bright example to us in our lesser difficulties; he who feared God believed according to his word, and it was accounted unto him for righteousness. Yet type and ceremony, and psalm and prophecy all pointed to a coming deliverance, when the Lamb of God should be manifested, to bear away the sin of the world, and by Him all that believe are justified from all things from which they could not be justified by the law of Moses. Of the new covenant ratified by His blood, God had declared it should not be as the old one, of law and penalty, but "the days come," saith the Lord, "that I will make a new covenant, and this shall be the covenant : I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts. I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more." The hour came when God was to fulfil this gracious promise, as the hour will come for the fulfilment of every word He has spoken. Jesus was born in Bethlehem. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God,

and the Word was God. He came to live and to die to save His people from their sins; not to save all men, but as many as should receive Him. "To Him give all the prophets witness that through His name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive the remission of sins." Before He was manifested to Israel, God sent John baptizing in water, preaching the baptism of repentance (es) into the remission of sins. He said, I baptize you in water (es) into repentance, saying unto the people that they should believe in Him which should come after him—that is, in Christ Jesus. They who received and accepted the message-who believed God-to them it was imputed for righteousness; theirs was the blessedness of those unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity whose transgression is covered. Their repentance from their sins unto God, their trust in Him and their consequent forgiveness, were signalised by the divine command by baptism or immersion in water, a rite emblematical and symbolical of their repentance unto God and His remission of their sins. Hence it is said to be into (es) repentance, and into (es) the remission of sins.

Jesus himself submitted to this rite, that he might fulfil all righteousness, and be one with His people in all things (except sin). He entered upon His ministry; He came to preach the Gospel to the poor, to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captive; the recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord; He came to seek and to save that which was lost, to give His life a ransom for many-and He finished the work which His Father gave Him to do.

It is finished, yes, indeed, finished every jot. Sinner, this is all you need, tell me, is it not? The Gospel-the good news, the glad tidings Jesus Himself proclaimed to Nicodemus. summarising it in three simple propositions. 1. God loved the world.

2. The Son of Man gave Himself to be lifted up upon the cross in order (iva) to the end that 3. Whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life.

The law which was given by Moses-deadly in its majesty-proclaimed the solemn truth that God is holy, and without holiness no one shall see the Lord.

The Gospel which came by Jesus Christ tells the joyful tidings that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish, and that whosoever will may come and have everlasting life through faith in His name.

It is all salvation by grace through faith.

One cannot fail to be struck in reading the Gospels by the constant reiteration of the word,

Observer, Jan. 1. '76.

by the constant recurrence of the theme upon the tongue of Jesus. Faith. Have faith in God. All things are possible to him that believeth. When He gave sight to the blind, when He cleansed the leper, when He healed the sick, He chose the same words of good cheer to speak in the ears of all the people-not simply the words which spake of healing, but of salvation. Thy faith hath saved thee." To the blind, the leper, the diseased, and the sinner, whether He healed or whether He pardoned, the words were the same.


Thy faith hath saved thee, íσTIS σεσωχέ σε.


His gracious words were, "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden." "Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out." What this coming was he clearly declared. He that believeth on the Son hath (exe holds, possesses) everlasting life. He that believeth on me possesseth (exe) everlasting life. In the face of these it scarcely needed Paul's elaborate reasoning or John's confident assurance of faith to comprehend that we are justified by faith, irrespective altogether of works of law, deeds done in obedience to law or commandment χωρίς εργων νόμον, that He that hath the Son of God hath life, and that whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God.

This is the simple truth, let theorists and speculators beware of adding to or taking from the very words of Jesus Himself. There is no unrighteousness or guile or concealment in Him. His words are distinct and faithful and true, and he who propounds and teaches any other gospel-were it an angel from heaven-he shall be Anathema when the Lord comes. There is nothing that the sinner has to do iya in order that he may be saved-that he may receive the remission of his sins, and an inheritance among them that are sanctified-but simply bona fide, with the heart, believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, surrendering the soul entirely unto him. No deed of law, no action of his, no observance of ordinance, obedience to express command, secures or renders more secure that which is accomplished by simple faith; heartfelt trust in Jesus and confiding surrender unto Him.

Nothing, either great or small,
Nothing, sinner, no,
Jesus did it-did it all.

Long, long ago.

Weary, working, plodding one,
Why toil you so?

Cease your doing, all was done
Long, long ago.

Cast your deadly doing down,
Down at Jesus' feet;
Stand in Him, in Him alone,
Gloriously complete.

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