1771.] MR DE COURCY ARRIVES IN EDINBURGH. 217 of May last. Blessed be the Lord, for refreshing my weary

soul in this wilderness! O that I may never forget his mercies, but may go on from strength to strength, till I appear before him in Zion! I have been assaulted to-day by suggestions of different kinds, particularly by doubting whether the peace I enjoyed was not a false peace; but I got rid of them by looking to the Lord, and begging of him to keep me from temptation. I cannot think my peace is false. First, because I now have lower thoughts of myself than I had before: I see that I am not worthy the name of a Christian. Secondly, I have a desire to pray, and resolve to spend more time in that delightful exercise than formerly. Thirdly, I feel more desire to confess Christ before men. Fourthly, I am more watchful over my heart, and more upon my guard, knowing how easily I am led away. Fifthly, I see my strength lieth only in Christ, and that it is by cleaving to him, and looking to him continually, that I can only hope for safety. Sixthly, That my peace proceedeth from seeing more of the love of God, in the sacrifice of his Son, than usual, and my heart in consequence thereof being drawn out to more confidence in him.

Tuesday, February 12.--I passed most of this day in great uneasiness from the fear of man. Mr De C. was expected, and I did not know how he would be received. I sought the Lord by groans that could not be uttered. Wonderfully has he helped me, and strengthened me in my soul. · All things have turned out favourably. O, to have ever a single eye in all things to his glory!

Lady Glenorchy to Lady Maxwell. “ My dear Madam,—Mr De Courcy arrived here this evening, and I have had a great deal of private conversation with him. He is quite the person Mr Wesley represented him, of a sweet disposition, and wishes only to preach Christ to poor sinners, wherever he finds an open door. I have not as yet got an answer from Mr H., but I have, by a letter received from another quarter, some reason to think it very possible that cruel letter came from a different person,- I would gladly hope so. Beg of the Lord to direct us how to proceed with respect to St Mary's Chapel. We are poor blind creatures --much need we have of wisdom from above; but the Lord is gracious, he surely will not forsake those who put

their trust in him. I will endeavour to call upon you, and bring Mr De C. with me, to-morrow morning.--Yours affectionately,

W. G.” “ Tuesday, 10 o'clock."

Wednesday, February 13.--Mr De Courcy began today to expound in the family--the word seemed accompanied with power. I have been all day in great darkness. Satan seems to have set all his forces in array against me. But in the name of the Lord, I trust, he will be put to flight.




Lady Glenorchy gives up all connexion with Mr Wesley's preachers

Letters from Mr Wesley to Lady Maxwell on this subject Lady Glenorchy's separation from the Methodists affects Lady Maxwell, but does not interrupt their mutual friendship—Extracts from Diary from February 15, to March 14, 1771--Letter from Lady Glenorchy to Lady Maxwell-Diary continued from April 6, to May 5, 1771 -Letter from Lady Glenorchy to Lady Maxwell—Diary continued -Lady Glenorchy goes to Taymouth-Extracts from Diary from July 7, to September 15, 1771_Lord and Lady Glenorchy leave Taymouth, and arrive at Barnton-Lord Glenorchy's sickness and death-Extracts from Diary from September 21, to November 24, 1771_Lord Glenorchy's funeral-Will-Generous act of Lord Breadalbane-Lady Glenorchy has a severe attack of fever_Extracts from Diary from February 12, to March 15, 1772.

For some weeks Mr De Courcy officiated in conjunction with Mr Wesley's preachers with great acceptance. Being, however, a decided Calvinist, the strain of his discourses must have been very different from theirs; so much so, indeed, does this appear to have been the case, that even Mr Wesley found himself called upon to disapprove of the open and pointed manner in which one of his preachers had impugned some Calvinistical points. This incongruity of doctrines was, as might have been expected, very unpleasant, and in fact injurious to Lady Glenorchy, and determined her to give up entirely all connexion with Mr Wesley's preachers. The sagacity of Mr Wesley had foreseen this, and in two letters, not written perhaps in the very best temper, he endeavoured to prepare the mind of Lady Maxwell for the event.

The Rev. John Wesley to Lady Glenorchy.


London, January 24, 1771. “My dear Lady,-Although Mr M‘Nab is quite clear as to justification by faith, and is in general a sound and good preacher, yet I fear he is not clear of blame in this. He is too warm and impatient of contradiction, otherwise he must be lost to all common sense, to preach against final perseverance in Scotland. From the first hour that I entered the kingdom, it was a sacred rule with me, never to preach on any controverted point-at least not in a controversial way. Any one may see, that this is only to put a sword into our enemies' hands. It is the direct

way increase all their prejudices, and to make all our labours fruitless. You will shortly have a trial of another kind. Mr De Courcy purposes to set out for Edinburgh in a few days. He was from a child a member of one of our societies in the south of Ireland. There he received remission of sins, and was for some time groaning for full redemption. But when he came to Dublin, the Philistines were upon him, and soon prevailed over him. Quickly he was convinced, that there is no perfection, and that all things depend on absolute unchangeable decrees.' At first he was exceeding warm upon these heads : now he is far more calm. His natural temper, I think, is good : he is open, friendly, and generous. He has also a good understanding, and is not unacquainted with learning, though not deeply versed therein. He has no disagreeable person, a pleasing address, and is a lively, as well as a sensible preacher. Now, when you add to

[ocr errors]

this, that he is quite new, and very young, you may judge how he will be admired and caressed ! 'Surely such a preacher as this never was in Edinburgh before ! Mr Whitefield himself was not to compare with him ! What an angel of a man! Now, how will a raw inexperienced youth be able to encounter this ? If there be not the greatest of miracles to preserve him, will it not turn his brain ?

And may he not then do far more hurt than either Mr W- or Mr T

did ? Will he not soon prevent your friend from 'going on to perfection, or thinking of any such thing? Nay, may he not shake you also ? He would ; but that the God whom you serve is able to deliver you. At present, indeed, he is in an exceeding loving spirit. But will that continue long? There will be danger on the one hand if it does ; there will be danger on the other if it does not. It does not appear that any great change has been wrought in our neighbours by Mr. Wh's death. He had fixed the prejudice so deep, that even he himself was not able to remove it; yet our congregations have increased exceedingly, and the work of God increases on every side. I am glad you use more exercise. It is good both for body and soul. As soon as Mr De Courcy is come, I shall be glad to hear how the prospect opens.

You will then need a larger share of the wisdom from above; and I trust you will write with all openness to, my

dear Lady, your ever affectionate servant,


The Rev. John Wesley to Lady Maxwell.

February 26, 1771. “My dear Lady,-I cannot but think the chief reason of the little good done by our preachers at Edin

« VorigeDoorgaan »