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this man, as one of a numerous class of hard-working, industrious, and brave men, may not leave Calcutta, without it being shown to him, and all his class through him, that the inhabitants generally, and the wealthy merchants in particular,
Who dwell at home at ease,'
are always willing and ready to stretch out a helping hand to those who
• Brave the dangers of the seas,' and who, by the misfortunes of a seafaring life, are cast upon their bounty.
Here the little all we know of the case of these unfortunate people must come to a close, and remain in awful silence until the resurrection of the last day.
Before bringing these remarks to a close, we would press on your attention, dear reader, a few plain reflections : -1. We are all exposed to a far more fatal shipwreck than this. The shipwreck of faith and the soul, concerning which many have made shipwreck.
2. Many who have sailed with prosperous breezes over the ocean of life, and apparently certain of entering into heaven, do actually come short of it-foundering at the very mouth of the haven of rest, and stranding on the very shores of Canaan. They had not on board the Captain of Salvation.
3. Let us take heed, lest we be mistaken in our course; and fear, lest a promise being left us, we should seem to come short of it.
4. We see how entirely dependant we are on God for preservation and guidance, for in this case every thing was done which human skill could suggest or accomplish, but it failed. The Lord alone is our keeper ; He holdeth the winds in his fist, and the waters in the hollow of his hand ; and he alone can command the one, or combat the other.
5. How uncertain is the continuance of our enjoyments, or the fulfilment of our hopes, save those which flow from religion and which rest on Christ.
Here were persons, doubtless promising themselves years of enjoyment and ease-just about to lift the cup to the lip, and drink to the full, when it is dashed from them in an instant. All eagerly stretching that eye, which was soon to be glazed in death, to catch the first glimpse of land. Nor are they alone in their disappointment and sor
many of our race, though not literally wrecked, are, as far as hope, and joy, and peace are concerned, most completely and for ever wrecked.
Oh, that we may be wise, and consider our latter end, seeking for that preparation of heart which is from the Lord, and for a standing place upon that rock Christ; on which every sinner, seeking and finding it, shall stand with triumph and joy at the last day. We would entreat your prayers for seamen; and also your aid, that those who will aud can endeavour to raise them from the evils of the fall, may not be straitened either for want of funds, or of the Spirit of the Lord God to give them success in all their labours. Pray and labour, therefore, that the abundance of the sea may be converted.'
A FRIEND TO SEAMEN.
DISTRIBUTION OF THE BIBLE AMONG SEAMEN.
[From the Twenty-third Annual Report of the New York Marine Bible Society.)
It is no longer a problem to be solved by an untried experiment, whether the free circulation of God's inspired truth among men is attended with good. From unquestionable evidence it has the most happy effect in restraining vice,-enlightening the public conscience,-elevating the standard of morality, and promoting those domestic and social virtues, which lie at the foundation of individual and national happiness. And while it is admitted on all hands, that no class of men need such influence more than those “who go down to the sea in ships, and do business in the great waters,” it is abundantly evident, that there are none by whom the bible is more thankfully received, or to whom it is more likely to prove
power and the wisdom of God.” The Society has distributed during the past year, eight hundred and fifty bibles, and nine hundred and fifty-four testaments; making in all one thousand eight hundred and four copies of the scriptures in ten different languages. “Our Young Men’s Bible Society of New York, which embraces a large number of the most enterprising and intelligent young men of the city, and who have, as their works show, high religious and moral principles (says the Twenty-second Report of the American Bible Society) have distributed six hundred and eleven bibles, and two thousand one hundred and eighty-two testaments, at the naval and military stations.”
THE DEDICATION OF A NEW BETHEL SHIP.*
[Taken from the Calcutta Christian Observer.]
This floating place of worship has undergone several improvements since it was launched. When first we saw this place, it looked like anything but a Bethel. Some said it was an old hearse;' others said that it was some merchant's packing case ;' and all made enquiries, 'who was the talented architect that built an ark so truly square?' The appearance of the Bethel is certainly wonderfully improved, and is now no discredit to the city of palaces. The inside fitting up is very neat, being well lighted, and comfortably furnished, and does great credit to the committee and official gentlemen of the Society.
The Rev. T. Boaz commenced the service with reading and prayer, and gave a suitable address from the following words :- Who hath despised the day of small things. From the above words he gave an account of the rise and smalı beginnings of religious efforts among sailors,-compared what was formerly done, with what is now being done for these men,--and said, we might admire and be
* The dedication took place in September, 1838.
grateful for the result. The small fountain had become a large river, dispensing blessings in all its course. The grain of mustard had become a large tree, under whose shade many might repose. May the little leaven, thrown into the maritime world, leaven the whole lump!
The Rev. J. Penney, the Seamen's minister, concluded the service by prayer. The Society has a visiting agent, Mr. Roberts, whose duty it is to visit the ships, for the purpose of conversing with the sailors, and for distributing tracts among them.
The Rev. Mr. Macdonald, missionary of the Scotch Church, gives his assistance to this valuable Institution. We have heard some discourses from this gentleman well suited to the capacities of seamen. The reverend gentleman's plan is expounding more than preaching.
We hope that captains and officers of ships will not be behind in encouraging the men to attend a floating tabernacle, expressly prepared for their convenience and improvement; and we also hope that the liberality of the public will never let an Institution like the Bethel, fail for want of funds.
The Rev. Thomas Boaz, is the active and zealous Secretary, both of the Sailor's Home and the Bethel; the former owes its origin to him, and the latter is in a great measure indebted to his exertions for its prosperity. The reverend gentlemen deserves to be designated—the Sailors' Friend.'
A SAILOR'S HOME AT PENANG.
[From the Calcutta Christian Observer.]
We are glad to report the establishment of another Sailor's Home. The active Penangians have established a Home at Penang; a coffee and reading room is opened, and the whole is joined with the Temperance Society. We have now therefore Homes at Calcutta, Bombay, Madras, and Penang, and all in twelve months. May they be abundantly multiplied !
PIETY IN THE BRITISH NAVY.
Impressed with the importance of increased exertions in our navy, we cannot but rejoice in any effort which promises to bear on the character of this brave and hardy class. And if the officers are once brought under the influence of enlightened and genuine piety, we may hope well for the crews. Confirmatory of this remark, we submit the following pleasing extract :
From a Mate on board one of Her Majesty's Ships.
Having lately been led, through the Divine mercy, to see the importance of seeking the kingdom of God, I have naturally conceived some of that spirit of universal philanthropy, which I feel must actuate all those who are under the influence of the blessed gospel of our Redeemer; and more especially should I wish to exert myself for the cause of my brethren of the sea. The reading a few pages of “ Britannia,” the prize essay of the Society, has given spur to my desires; and I beg humbly to offer my Guinea for the furtherance of such a glorious design, as the spreading of the news of salvation amongst such a benighted class as seamen generally are.
I have a few opportunities of distributing tracts amongst the shipping of all nations, and have been kindly supplied by some in Spanish, French, Portuguese, and English, by Messrs. Spalding and Kidder, the American methodist missionaries at this port, (Rio de Janeiro,) who are in the babit of preaching afloat, whenever they can get a vessel to hoist the flag. The Guernsey vessels are in general the most ready to do so.
Should the Society think fit to send out any tracts, I shall, I trust, be enabled to distribute them; and shall ever pray the Lord of the harvest to employ good workmen and reapers in this great work, and to send His Holy Spirit upon those who go down to the sea in ships and have their business in great waters, till they become true worshippers of the Redeemer, and the songs of Zi shall resound from the bosom of the great deep.
My subscription will be continued annually, as long as I am afloat as a mate; and that will be, God willing, till I receive my promotion, when I hope my heart will be enlarged in proportion to my increased means.
With these interesting details before us, combined with those of our last, can we longer doubt that the interest of the poor sailor is taking a much firmer hold of the public mind ? His claims are being acknowledged and met. Nor can we but hail even these limited efforts, as the traveller hails the appearance of some little distant star, amid the universal gloom that surrounds his midnight path. The day-spring from on high is now visiting him-giving him light, and guiding his feet into the way of peace. Yet there is hope for the sailor.
THE DEPARTURE OF THE REV. DR. ROSS, FOR SYDNEY.
We have much pleasure in reporting, that the Rev. Dr. Ross, who has gone out to the Colony of Australia, under the auspices of the Colonial and London Missionary Societies, has kindly taken charge of one of our libraries for the use of the seamen and passengers on board the • Earl Grey,' in which he has embarked for Sydney; and that our esteemed friend has also promised to co-operate with the Society's agents there. Most earnestly do we unite in the prayers and intercessions of the christian church, that abundant peace and prosperity may be vouchsafed unto him.
We are anxiously anticipating the period when every minister and missionary, stationed on sea-coasts, or in maritime districts, will cordially unite with us, in bending their energies to achieve the great work in which we are humbly but resolutely engaged.
CRITICAL NOTICES OF NEW WORKS.
SUICIDE:- A Sermon, delivered in Orange Street Chapel, Leicester
Square, on Sunday Evening, September 22nd, 1839, by J. P. DOBSON.
London :---Nisbet & Co. 21, Berner's-street; Rolfe & Fletcher, 17, Corphill.
Suicide is a subject which seldom comes within the range of pulpit instruction. It has been regarded as more legitimately belonging to a course of ethics. And yet, when an opportunity occurs for successfully introducing it into the sacred desk, it is not to be regarded as at all remote from those more evangelical topics which the christian teacher has daily to approach and handle. It is no less the province of religion than of morals (for what are morals but religion carried into the practice ?) to teach men the duties they owe to themselves as well as to others, or to God. And in the present instance, considering that the unhappy victim was once an attendant on his ministry, we think that Mr. Dobson has only fulfilled an imperative duty in seizing on the fatal conduct of the young female who recently threw herself from the Monument, as affording a most fitting occasion to lift up the voice of instruction and counsel—first to the people of his charge--and then, by committing the discourse to the press, to all classes and conditions of men.
The sermon is characterised by great power and beauty. Its lessons are not more solemn than important; and, conceiving as we do, that it is worthy of the widest circulation, we would earnestly recommend it to the immediate attention of our readers.
THE BEST MATCH :-or the Soul's Espousal to Christ, opened and
improved. By EDWARD PEARSE. "Reprinted from the edition of 1673,
London :-T. Ward and Co. Paternoster-row.
This is another of the beautifully executed parts of WARD'S LIBRARY OF STANDARD DIVINITY; and forms one of those experimental treatises, which so happily address themselves to the deepest feelings of the christian. It is to a greater or less degree the development of that mental experience, which is common to all who are brought to seek redemption through the atonement of Christ; and exhibits how the soul of man is brought into union with the Saviour,---in what this union consists,—what gracious operations it includes, -what unspeakable comfort and happiness it secures. The treatise will be read with interest and profit by all who have been conscious of those states of mind which terminate in genuine conversion, and who are now being filled with peace and joy in believing.