Immagini della pagina

such a frightful black uniform, I was most dreadfully appalled. He thus addressed me: “God bless you, neighbour Jew! Well, whither are you going ?” I was so much terrified that I could make no reply whatever. But he immediately began to preach to me the Tholah, (the name applied to the Lord Jesus by the Jews,) on the cross, and with great emotion wished that I might experience his power in my heart. That at once gave utterance and feeling, so that I inquired whether all this were literally true. The hussar replied he could pledge his soul's salvation on it. I then made this solemn promise to him, that if the crucified Jesus, the famous Tholah, would prove himself a Saviour to me, I would then worship him as the true God, and be baptized. Amid such cordial converse, we travelled together for three days, till we came to Dantzic, where he promised to take me to his minister, a pious man, at Gumbinnen. We were, however, separated from each other at Dantzic; and being a stranger there, and not knowing his name and place of residence, I could not find him again. I was afterwards informed, that he was an auditor with the black hussars—had his quarters at Gumbinnen, and greatly feared the Lord. But having well retained the name of the small city of Gumbinnen, I now inquired how I might get there. Being told, by way of Konigsburg, I set out upon my journey thither. On the way, near Heiligenbeil, (in wbat was called the Rendskrug,) I met with an awakened and pious innkeeper, who immediately perceived my distress. He had just been reading the 46th chapter of Isaiah, where, v. 3 and 4, are these memorable words : Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: and even to your old age I am he ; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you ; I have made and I will bear; even I will carry and will deliver you.” These words gave occasion to him to converse with me about the Saviour of Israel, and that too in so affectionate a man. ner, that I began to place great confidence in the man. He also introduced me to his minister, the late Rev. Mr. Schuman, at Balga. I immediately inquired of him, with great solicitude, whether I might yet be saved. He replied I might, if I would believe in Jesus Christ. This happening on a Sunday, and the minister being just on his way to Church, I followed him into it, and there heard him preach, on Sunday called Quasimodogenisti, 1742, on the appearance of our Saviour among his disciples. But I understood no part of the sermon, except what was said concerning Thomas, on account of the dreadful confusion, anxiety and distress of my heart, which manifested itself, even in my gestures, to that degree, that other people in the church were afraid to sit near me. The next day this minister sent me to the Rev. Mr. Troschel, at Heiligenbeil, who pointed out to me that text in the Hebrew Bible: (Deut. xxvii. 26)—"Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say, Amen!” which almost caused me to faint away. This man also advised the Rev. Mr. Schuman not to meddle with me. The latter, however, maintained he could not dismiss me, and took me into bis house, where he entertained me above a year and a half, Memoirs of John Christopher Leberecht.


Laught me to read German, and instructed me in the Christian religion. My anguish and distress, however, still continued, and at one time arose to such a pitch that I once more determined upon committing suicide, because I imagined there was no bope of salvation left for me. Accordingly, I fixed a rope around my neck, in the room where I was left alone by myself, and mounted a chair in order to suspend myself on a rafter overhead. In doing this, however, I was prevented by a particular check of conscience, and by the minister's interrupting me, having heard the noise which the chair occasioned, below stairs. But oh! how was the man terrified on beholding the rope already around my neck. He presently kneeled down with me and besought the Lord Jesus with many tears to have mercy on this lost sheep of the house of Israel. Among others, he made use of this expression : "Lord Jesus ! I cannot leave this spot till thou have answered my prayer!" With that he began to sing :

« Thy joyful Spirit give him [i. e. this poor sinner) pow'r-
Thy stripes heal his diseases;
Apply Thy blood at his last hour,
To save him, dearest Jesus !
Then to Thy promis'd rest him bring.
That with the ransom’d he may sing

Thy praise above for ever!" During this interval, a happy calm and a gracious assurance took possession of my heart. Still I would not submit to be baptized, until this rest would cease to fluctuate and would permanently abide. But I continued to experience these fluctuations, because I knew not how to account for the feeling of my misery and sin still remaining within me.

At Whitsuntide, 1744, the Rev. Mr. Schuman preached expressly from these words : (Acts iii. 15)-“ Ye have killed the Prince of Life. whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. He proved that although the Jews had killed Christ, the salvation of God was notwithstanding come upon them too. On this occasion I received the assurance I might now be baptized. At our very first interview together, the minister had complained to me how badly baptized Jews commonly turned out. I however testified to him that I was anxious about nothing but the truth, and therefore expressly desired this favour of him, that he would dispense with having sponsors at my baptism, in order to avoid the presents usually received from them.

I was accordingly baptized on the third festival day of Whitsuntide, in the name of the triune God, and called John Christopher Leberecht.* This rite was performed amid such an extraordinary, happy sensation, that I was afterwards enabled to indulge the firm belief that I was then baptized with the blood of Jesus Christ.

(To be continued.)

• In English, Live-right, that is, live according to the precepts of the Gospel.

For the Christian Xerald.

(Translated from the German.) In a village in Germany, there lived a poor old farmer, who supported himself, and gained sufficient to build a small house and barn, and to purchase some cattle, by his own honesty and industry. But he had a bad neighbour, who was envious against him, and, not very well pleased in seeing him get along so comfortably in the world, could not rest day nor night, for thinking how he should injure him. In the mean while the poor man done all in his power to please himlent him corn for his bread, his farming utensils, and every thing which he asked ; and said often to him: “Good neighbour! I wish you well. I do you no evil. Let us live in peace. All this availed nothing ; but he continued trying to vex him-would not repay the corn he had borrowed, and broke his tools, in the bargain. At last the poor man would not lend him more, (and none could blame him for it,) which made his neighbour still more malicious against him. If he put up a fence, he would at night pull it down, and poison his cattle.

The worst comes yet. In harvest the poor man gathered bis grain, which he had raised, with a great deal of labour, into his barn and granaries, until they were full: the rest he must needs leave out-doors. Now what does that wretch do ? He gets up in the night, and sets the grain on fire, which was left outside ; from which the barn and house caught, together with the bad neighbour's house and all its contents, and burned down to ashes, so that he saved nothing; and afterwards was compelled to beg from house to house for his bread.

The poor man was very much disheartened. It hurt him most to think that his neighbour had done this, which he could not prove. He groaned and said, “Othou good God! it is hard to lose, in one night, my house and all, through the malevolence of one man ; but thou gave them to me, and permitted that I should lose them. I now give all my things up to thee.". Then he began to clear away the rubbish from the old house, and solicited the assistance of his good neighbours to help him build a new one. He borrowed a small sum of money to defray the expenses, and gave for security an acre of land. One evening, while he was returning silently from the quarry, with a load of stone, his thoughts dwelt upon the misfortunes which he had experienced : but they overwhelmed his mind ; and in order to give vent to his feelings, he sung the following lines :

"O God! Thou art as rich to day, as ever!

My trust I put in Thee." Having his eyes fixed upon the ground, as he walked by the side of bis cart, he saw something shining ; and lifting it up, found it to be a very handsome, heavy box; but he put it into his feed bag, without opening it; saying to himself, "It must be that that gentleman who

" God meant it unto Good."

few days ago,

passed me by the quarry, has left this. I will save it. Somebody will inquire for it.” This was the beginning of his good luck. He had not proceeded more than two hundred paces, with his box, before two men came riding up to him, asking bim very rudely, if he had found any thing. “ O yes !” said the honest man, “one box in the way." " Give it here," said the other, in a moment, our master lost it.” No, no,” said the farmer ; “I can't do so; I will give it to him myself.” Then taking his horse out from his cart, went with them to the house where the gentleman had stopped. This box contained rings, pearls, watches, jewels, and many other precious things, to the amount of 500,000 dollars. The honest man, getting down from his horse, went immediately in to the gentleman, and said, * Here is the box just as I found it. I have not touched it. God forbid that I should keep any thing that is not mine." The gentleman's wife taking, opened it, and found nothing lost. “Good sir!" said the gentleman, are you always as honest ?” “O!” said the good man,

I was well off-had a good housc, and a barn full of grain ; but my neighbour set them on fire, and I was burned entirely out; and now am lest a poor man. But I give it all up to the Lord-he doth all things well.” The gentleman, being awed with the narration of the poor man, looking upon his wife very earnestly, called his servant to bring his pen and ink, from out of his wagon. The servant having done as he was commanded, the gentleman said to the farmer-" You are an honest and unfortunate man ! I will give you 500 dollars for this act, and a letter to my cousin, in your town, who will liberate you from two years taxes. The poor man was overpowered with these words, and unable to speak for some time. But said, “O sir! that is too much ; that I cannot take. What should I do with all that money? The people would think I had stolen it. O, good sir! if you would give me enough to buy one cow only, I shall be satisfied." “ You shall have one, and more too,” said the gentleman; “but this money you must take, that is yours.” The poor man stood trembling, and said, “ O God! I give it all up to thee.” The lady then taking his feed bag, put the money therein ; and giving it to the farmer, the gentleman said, “Go thou in the name of God! my servants shall accompany you bome; and to-morrow you can build better." man then parted from his benevolent benefactor, accompanied by the servants, to return home. At night he retired to rest, but was unable to sleep, for thinking how wonderfully the Lord had helped him out of all his troubles. In about a quarter of a year, when his house and barn were completed, there came a wagon before his door, heavy loaded, and two fine cows behind it. The wagoner asked for the good man; and when seeing him, said—“You thought my master had forgotten the cow which he promised; he has sent you two; they could not come before, because your barn was not built. All ia this wagon is yours also.” Here was furniture, pork, hams, seedcorn, and many other things. The good man was silent again, and knew not how to express his thankfulness, for this bounteous supply.

All this time, the bad neighbour was living without house or home ; no one would receive bim into their employ or take any care of him,

..” The poor because they knew him to be a dishonest man, and a tirer. lle was compelled to beg, sick and poor, from door to door, and trust to the mercy of his neighbours for bread. One day he came to the door of his neighbour, who seeing him, was moved with compassion, and said, “O God! is that you ? Come in. I will forgive you every thing. Set down and eat." This kind reception bowed the heart of his once inveterate enemy so much, that, falling down upon his knees, he confessed all that he had done to injure him, implored his forgiveness, and promised to do no more such crimes. “ Will you not ?" said the farmer; “ then I will keep you in my employ : I want a man to help me.” His neighbour went in, and continued with him until he became an industrious and useful man ; which pleased his friend, and led him to say often to him, like Joseph_“You thought evil against mc; but God meant it unto good.”



To the Editor of the Christian Herald,

Sir-Permit me, through you, to present my grateful acknowledgments to “ L. F." for bis valuable Thoughts on the Prayer of Faith," (Christian Herald, No. 193, page 518.) The Lord blessed them at that time to the comfort of my soul.

It is not my design to intermeddle with the pleasure, which he will doubtless experience, in the kind exposure of an error, of “ N.J." properly called unbelief. I only intend to say a few words on what appears to me a prevalent error of the present day among professing Christians-viz. MANGLING THE BIBLE.

To do justice to such an article, would be to occupy more of your number than falls to my share. The extremes of the subject appear to be-The first aberration from an implicit faith: And the greatest extent of Unitarian infidelity. I shall only remark on the former. An implicit faith receives the Bible with the simplicity of a little child. It reads and believes, guided by one unerriog rule" All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction, in righteousness." (2 Tim. iii. 16.) These properties are necessary to constitute the Bible what it is-A standard which all denominations acknowledge ; and to which reason itself cheerfully bows. It is above reason. А perfect rule of life. An unerring guide to prayer. The rerealed will of God.

Its practical uses are seen in the progress of Christian experience thus :--The child of grace supplicates a supply of his spiritual and temporal wants, humbly closing-If it be consistent with thy will. The Lord replies-Does he mean consistent with my secret or revealed will ? With the former he has no business : and as to the latter let him go and see. He returns and finds there promises, either general or special, suited to all his wants. He selects such as are appropriate; and if any doubts arise, instead of suborning the word to his own understanding, he seeks instruction, by comparing Scripture with Scripture : and finds, (Rom. iv.)-" These things were

« IndietroContinua »