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to the blind, lame, and diseased poor, was often very extensive, and his benevolence to sufferers by the fire and flood in 1837, was far beyond our anticipations. In distributing Tracts, commenting upon them, and recommending the gospel at melas and other places of public concourse, be fully performed the labours of a reader or teacher, without any remuneration from man, and his house was the general resort of all who had any love to the truth, as well as an asylum to those who were persecnted for righteousness' sake.
In the spring of 1837, a circumstance occurred which deeply pained his mind. His wife, whom he had taught to read, and who had for a long period attended Christian instruction, had for several months excited considerable hopes that she was about to come out from the world and cast in her lot with the followers of the Lamb. The baptism of their third child had been delayed by the father's request, beyond the usual period, in order that the ordinance might be administered to it and the mother at the same time. All scriptural means were used to increase her knowledge, impress her heart, and to bring her to an enlightened decision on the subject. For several months divine truth appeared to make considerable impressions on her mind, and her knowledge of the leading principles of the Gospel seemed to increase; but ber attention was soon diverted from these important matters, and she finally told her husband that she had, for the present, fully decided against making a profession of Christianity. At his request the child was baptized, but the mother's refusal to enter into the Church of Christ continued for a time deeply to affect the mind of the father, and to perplex and depress his spirits. In the course of time bis mind assumed its wonted energy, but from that period he appeared to have obtained a more humbling view of human depravity than before, to see the great spiritual danger to which he, and especially his family, were exposed by associating with idolaters, and more fully to feel the entire inefficiency of all outward means to change the heart and fully reform the conduct without the influences of the Holy Ghost.
At his baptism, our deceased friend publicly expressed, before many witnesses, his ardent wish that whenever removed by death, his body might be buried according to the general custom among Christian people, and not, on any account, be reduced to ashes by fire as is usual among Hindus. This sentiment he not only held in common with all Hindus who have at any time, since the commencement of the Mission, manifested more or less attachment to Christianity, but practically exemplified it in his conduct by burying all paupers who died on his premises, and had no relatives to claim their mortal remains, and by not attending the funeral of several near relations who died in the Hindu faith after he embraced Christianity. Being fully convinced of the debasing influence of the burning system on survivors, and finding so many examples in the Scriptures of the worshippers of the true God, having their bodies committed to the dust by interment, he concluded that it was the will of God, that the bodies of the disciples of Christ shonld, after the departure of the immortal spirit, be committed to the grave in the certain hope that what was sown in corruption the Saviour would at the last day raise in incorruption. His sentiments on this point were very decided, and well known to us, his family, and to many other people in this city; though it is, in many respects, to be lamented that he left no recorded attestation of bis wishes in reference to the disposal of his own body in that particular manner.
During the first five months of 1839, he did not in several respects manifest so much of the Christian temper as was to be expected from former professions. So far as we know there was no positive departure from the principles of the Gospel in sentiment; but in conduct there was an evident meeting of the world half-way, a disregard of Scripture authority, and a hankering after worldly enjoyments and the applause of his fellow-creatures. The appearance of this spirit grieved us much, and led us to increased faithfulness in warping him of his danger, and in beseeching him to beware of the spares in which he seemed about to be caught, both from his own ignorance and recklessness of consequences, and the blandishments and machinations of those who in heart were his most deadly enemies, though, to accomplish their own ends, they had assumed the garb and the speech of bis most devoted friends. The betrothing of his third child, a boy of about three years of age, to a girl something younger, of rich Hindu parents, and to which bis wife wished him fully to consent according to native custom, and to go through with all the pomp of eastern manners, was the chief cause of this melancholy departure from the simplicity of Christian temper and conduct. Whether the agreement was on bis part fully consummated, is not known to us, as a circumstance occurred about the beginning of June, which led away our minds from that subject, effectually roused him from the lethargy into which he had fallen, showed him that the friendship of the world is enmity with God, and convinced him that the path of Christian duty, however rugged and thorny, is the only path which leads to glory, honour, and immortal life. Almost from the period of his baptism both he and his family had been considered by his caste as lost to it, and he, at least, did not join in any of its meetings, either for feasting or business, but no public expulsion had been formally made. About the period referred to, a child of one of the native Christians died, and was buried according to Christian custom. The father's former caste (the same to which Bhaichand had belonged) used all their influence to get the body of the child burned, which the father did not permit. This roused their indignation—they beld meetings on the subject - influenced his wife to forsake him-declared they would not allow her to return unless he renounced Christianity - publicly intimated that he, Bhaichand and his family, and all others who had professedly embraced Christianity and had formerly belonged to that class, were expelled from the caste, and had become unfit associates for any Hindu—and threatened with the same punishment all who should in any way assist them, or should even have a Christian book in their possession or go to a place of Christian worship. Many who had till that period been loud in their declarations of esteem for Bhaichand and the religion he embraced, now showed the hollowness of their professions by openly joining the opposite party, and by every means in their power annoying him and all other vatives who in any measure. named the name of Christ. These things opened his eyes; and, perceiving the cloud which was ready to burst on all who professed
to love the Saviour, be opened to them his heart, his hand, and his house. From that day he appeared clad in all the armour which the Gospel supplies : 'he encouraged the timid, warned the unruly, visited all the melas which occurred during the rainy season in the neighbourhood of Surat, to distribute tracts and to speak of what he had tasted and handled of the Word of Life to the assembled crowd, invited and encouraged many to attend on the preaching of the Gospel in the mission-chapel and in his own house, and daily seemed to increase in his labours and self-denial in behalf of the really poor, the sick, and the dying. Making allowance for human infirmities, he literally went about doing good, and regarded no service too laborious or mean, if he could benefit a fellow-creature. At the same time, his private conversation became much more savoury, and his whole demeanour such as indicated a deep acquaintauce with the evils of his own heart, the temptations of Satan, and the shares of an ungodly world ; and also manifested a clear view of the way of salvation, as originating in the sovereign mercy of God, flowing to us through the merits of bis Son, and applied by the agency of the Holy Spirit. On these themes he delighted peculiarly to dwell in private conversation; and bis discourses in public, with the poor and others, were generally interesting and appropriate. There was a softening or mellowing of his whole character, which was very pleasing, and gave vivid indication of rapid growth in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. About the 20th of September he was attacked with fever, and during the remaining ten days of the month he called several times at the Civil Hospital and received the requisite medicines. He seemed to be convalescent, though in a weak state, and no fears were entertained respecting his recovery. On the morning of Sabbath the 29th, he was not present at worship in the mission-chapel, but appeared improving in health and lively in mind at the afternoon service in his own house. On the 1st of October, we were informed by a person connected with his family that he was still improving. It appears, however, that in the evening of that day he became suddenly very ill, and during the following night frequently manifested symptoms of delirium. Early on the morning of the 2nd we were informed of the change. Immediately I went to see him, and concluded that, though the fever was high, and his speech somewhat indistinct and incoherent, yet there was no instant danger, and that my duty was to get a native assistant doctor to visit him with as little delay as possible. In order to accomplish this I returned, and having obtained the desired individual set off again at half-past eight o'clock. He, however, died before we reached, and the body had been taken down to the lower hall near to the outer door of the house. Though he had been turned out of caste for embracing and professing Christianity, many of the caste people had entered the house and were preparing to dispose of the body in the usual Hindu way, while a very large concourse was assembled in the street. I requested his wife to give me the charge of the body for interment according to Christian custom, and to his well-known sentiments on the subject, and I would promise that the funeral should be in full accordance with his wishes and his station in society, and endeavoured to strengthen my request by mentioning the incongruity of his former . caste having anything to do with the body of an individual expelled from their society, especially as it was in direct opposition to the wishes of the deceased. To this she gave me, as I then conceived, and afterwards found to be the fact, an evasive answer; and, lest any impression should be made on her mind, she was dragged away, and I could see no more of her at that time. The people now became much excited, and wished me to leave the house. I begged them to become composed, to allow the body to remain a short time, and I would endeavour to settle the matter both amicably and honourably. A few of them then went into a back room, and having wrought themselves up into a perfect passion by stamping with their feet, beating on their breasts, and howling, returned where the body was, and declared in the hearing of all that they would do with it as they pleased, and stand all consequences, even to the giving up of life. A few of them now endeavoured to thrust me out of the house by sheer strength; but fearing that they could not accomplish this without using violence, a few more by artifice dragged me into a corner, and kept we there, while the others removed the corpse into the street. Considering it then beyond my influence, I was left at liberty; and the people proceeded with the corpse to the place of burning, and there consumed it in the usual Hindu way. After requesting the individual in charge of the affairs of the house to act as a faithful servant, and to avoid the most distant approach to peculation in the least matter, and begging all present to follow the example of the deceased as far as he bad followed Christ, I returned home deeply impressed with the recollection of what I had witnessed, and the scene through which I had passed ; but comforted by the assurance, that “ precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints,” under whatever adverse circumstances he may in his infinite wisdom see meet to permit it to take place, or to be followed; for “ he maketh even the wrath of man to praise him, and the remainder of wrath,” which will not subserve his purposes, “ he restrains.” “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.”'-Communicated by the late Rev. Alexander Fyric, Missionary at Surat.
" Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom
of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven." -MATT. xviii. 3, 4.
On one of the few fine afternoons occurring in the present month, a simple funeral wended its way to the burying-ground of St. PFour mourners and a small knot of charity.children with their mistress, followed the coffin ; a few friends met on the ground. Their pastor received the little party, and preceded them as usual into the church, with the Redeemer's precious assurance to the members of His own mystical body, that he is their resurrection Head. “I am the Resurrection and the Life : ” the words fell with peculiar
power on the hearts of the two or three met together. They felt that the glorified spirit which had so recently tabernacled in the poor clay they were about to commit to the dust, had known in its foretaste, and now knew in its fulness, both union and communion with the living Head. And the bleessd consequences of that eternal union came with force upon their minds as they reflected that the solemn work in which they were engaged was nothing less than sowing the seed of a corruptible body, to be raised by the mighty power of God, in incorruption, immortality, and glory.
After the service delivered from the desk, the exquisitely appropriate Psalm, in which the Church realizes her abiding dwellingplace from generation to generation in the eternal God,--and the resurrection chapter, which puts the song of anticipated triumph into her lips, “ O death! where is thy sting? O grave! where is thy victory ?” the party followed the remains of their deceased friend to the open grave.
There « dust to dust " taught the humbling lesson of the origin and fall of man. But “the sure and certain hope," proclaimed also the abounding grace of the salvation of God. For “ where sin abounded, grace did much more abound : that as sin hath reigned unto DEATH, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal LIFE, by Jesus Christ our Lord.” The eternal promise was still the same, as when first given amidst the fruits of the Fall in the garden of Eden. Jesus, the second Adam, the abolisher of death, the everlasting Life of his people, ever set forth in the Gospel hope, as the sure foundation, the tried Stone, and whosoever believeth shall never be ashamed. “ For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.”
May those who met around that spot, know experimentally what it is to be united to Christ as their Resurrection life. May they have it given them to embrace Jesus as the Mediator of the new Covenant of grace, in the arms of their faith, and to feed upon his fulness, receiving grace for grace. Christ is the resurrection life of grace here, the resurrection life of glory hereafter, and unto you who do thus believe, he is indeed precious.
The simple service was soon over. The children shed some tears, for young sympathies are soon drawn out by the impressive solemnities of the funeral scene. The feelings of the rest of the party were of another character. It was not one of those cases in which tender ties are wrenched asunder. There was no relative of the deceased to attend. He was followed by the few of his little circle ; with kindly respect for the man, with deeper and kindlier esteem for the Christian. The minister left, the little knot yet lingered around the grave, then separated, and he who had moved about with them in his usual duties but the Friday previous, was left the silent tenanter of his deep and quiet resting-place. But there is no gloom around the grave of the believer. The word of God breathes his blessing over the spot,-“ Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.”
Joseph S- was truly one of God's dear children. And he was “ a little child” of the kingdom of heaven. Many whose names have sounded more loftily, if the Scripture heading of this brief