Page images
PDF
EPUB

The great change that was evident in her was truly wonderful, and it might be said, as of old, "Stand still, and see the salvation of GOD;" for not much of human agency appeared to have been the cause of such extinction of self-righteousness, such unbounded love, such humble hope, and confident faith in a beloved REDEEMER. Such a tender concern had she for her brother and sisters, that she repeated herdying injunctions in the following manner:-"My dear sister E, attend to my dying words; perhaps, I shall never speak to thee again. Be kind and obedient to thy dear father and mother. Do not, I charge thee, neglect going to Meeting. Oh, that I had not neglected it so much! Do not act as I have done, my dear sister; put off gay clothes, and dress plainly. What are all the gaieties of a fleeting world, a dying hour can best show. Do all thou knowest to be right. We oftener err from neglecting what we know, than from not knowing. Do not forget what I have said to thee at this awful moment; let it have weight when I am gone.' She was now much exhausted; her cough was almost incessant; yet, in the most severe suffering, she said,

[ocr errors]

"JESUS can make a dying bed

[ocr errors]

Feel soft as downy pillows are." Then putting her arm, as well as her weakness would admit, round her friend's neck, she said, "Do not, my dear friend, weep for me; I am going to my Father and thy Father's house. We have had many pleasant hours together in this world. I was long a wanderer, but I trust we shall meet in that pleasant land of rest, to part no more. She then asked to hear the twelfth chapter of Luke read, many passages of which afforded her subject for rejoicing, even in the extremity of pain; especially that one which begins, "Consider the lilies how they grow," &c. She said, "How consoling! how soothing! how have I lived so blind to the beauties, the excellencies of this blessed book!"-laying her hand on it as she spoke.

After an interval of most distressing convulsive coughing, in which

she appeared departing, she revived, and desired to see her brother, to whom she thus addressed herself:"My dear brother, I wish once more to speak to thee before I die. Wilt thou remember all I have said to thee, when I am laid in the grave? Thy time, I know, is much occupied; but thou canst go to Meeting on First-day afternoons. Use the plain language, and do not follow the evil course of those who live only for this world. Obey thy parents in all they desire of thee: they never will ask thee to do any thing, but what is for thy advantage. Be kind to thy sisters; oh! always live in unity with them; and, my dear brother, never forget that thou must one day die; prepare for it in season; do not let thy last hour come as a thief in the night. I have had a sore trial, but my hope is in Him, in whom is no change. Dear brother, do not put it off as I have done. Let me be a warning to thee to begin early to seek the true Friend of Sinners, the sure help in time of need. Dear, dear Gmember what I say, when this hour shall be passed. I have loved you all dearly; but oh! how manifold is my love increased for you now; how much better I love all my kind friends, and the whole world, than when in health! The hour of death is an honest hour!"

-, re

She was again much exhausted; but her youngest sister coming into the room, she desired to have her brought near her, and, clasping her arms round her, thanked her for giving up so much of her time to her, during her illness, and said, "I know the LORD will bless thee for it; thou art an innocent, good girl now. O, mayest thou always remain so! Dear S, farewell, farewell; remember thy sister."

She then desired to hear the fifth chapter of Matthew, and the words, "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy," were a balm to her mind. She said, "I have obtained mercy; I cannot deceive myself now. Although I went from my blessed SAVIOUR, his mercy never left me." Many other parts of Holy Scripture had her attention, even in the severest pain; for although her

body was wasted to the extreme, yet did her mind retain its strength and clearness, and even increased in vigour, as it approached the moment of final freedom. She spoke much, at intervals of comparative ease, and thanked her friends for all their kind attention to her; and, on one remarking that it was an advantage to be with her, she said, "How thankful I am, that I can be of use to any one. It makes dying more easy, to think that I am permitted to do a little good; and very little it is. Have I not come in at the eleventh hour? and can I presume to take the wages of the whole day? But the blessed Lord of the harvest did freely give it to as great an idler as I. Oh, how wonderful are the mercies of the blessed, lowly LAMB OF GOD! All unworthy as I am, I yet will trust my all with Him."

Her pain now appeared very grievous, and her departure at hand. What she suffered, she said, was beyond expression; but she would endeavour to be patient. A friend said, she thought she could not suffer much more. "Oh!" said sbe," that is pleasant tidings; but I will try to bear all. The LORD OF LIFE bore with me long, very long." She often said,

"I'll praise my Maker while I've breath; And when my voice is lost in death, Praise shall employ my nobler powers;"

&c.

to

She asked her mother if she thought she had any thing more to do. "Tell me now;" said she; "my strength will soon be quite gone." The friend, in whose arms she had, from the beginning of her serious illness, expressed a wish to die, she now desired to support her. "I shall soon cease," said she, trouble my dear friends; and this is the greatest favour, and the last, 1 shall ask of thee." It was now about seven o'clock in the evening, and her friend sat down behind her, not thinking her change quite so near. She still continued in that sweet, confiding spirit; and still, amidst her severe agonies, expressed that fulness of love, which had been so great for the last few days. Her friend observed her lips move, and could hear, at intervals, words, as if in

earnest prayer. She motioned to be raised up, which was done, and she faintly whispered, "Farewell, dear M, again farewell! I shali soon be at rest in JESUS."

Her weeping friends now thought her gone, but she that held her motioned to them to be silent. Again the dear sufferer revived; and her mother thought that, perhaps, she had but swooned, and brought her some water. She said, "No, dear mother, no more drink in this world;" but wetting her lips with her own hands, to the surprise of her relatives and friends, she softly uttered a prayer, which, as nearly as could be recollected, was as follows:-" Come, blessed JESUS! O come! and re

[ocr errors]

Be

ceive a poor penitent wanderer home. Blessed JESUS, thou bleeding, dying LAMB, O come!-come with thy banner of salvation, and receive my departing soul! O, receive it to thy holy habitation, where it shall find peace and rest! And O thou GOD OF LOVE! pardon all my transgressions against thee, and remember my sins no more. with me in this my hour of sore trial. Shorten my sufferings, heavenly FATHER, if it is thy blessed will; yet I will try to be patient until my appointed time. Come, support me with thine outstretched arm of love, and enable me to say, Not my will, but thine be done.' Of thy manifold mercies, forgive all my short-comings; blot out all my many sins, and let my name be found written in the LAMB's book of life. Come, blessed JESUS! give me the white robe; O give me the white robe; and be with me through the deep waters. O make them shallow, until I have clean passed over. LORD JESUS, forget me not, nor leave me while in the dark valley of the shadow of death. Let the light of thy countenance shine upon me now and for ever. come, blessed JESUS!-come, and take my departing spirit to thy holy habitation, those mansions, many mansions, in thy FATHER'S house. Come, LORD JESUS, come, receive my-departing spirit,-receive-my-receive my-my-soul."

[ocr errors]

After this exertion, she sunk on the bosom that supported her dying

frame. It was now ten o'clock, and, to the view of those present, she seemed to expire without a sigh; but as if she had just beheld the glorious haven of rest, and still, in the spirit of pure love for her friends, wished to comfort those who wept the privation of her society, (for she was in her life very pleasant to many,) she once more opened her eyes, and, with a smile of celestial radiance passing over her fixed features, said very faintly, "Happy, happy, O, how happy!" And when she perceived that she was understood, she breathed no more. It is not in words to express the solemnity of such a scene. It was as if the portals of heaven had opened to our view, and we had seen our loved friend enter the abode of happiness and peace. Long, long may the impression abide with all who were present, and be remembered as a monument of the unbounded love of HIM who is the salvation of the world. Her decease occurred on the 13th day of the 12th month,

1816.

What a striking evidence does it furnish of the mercy and goodness of the universal Parent of mankind, that he is sometimes pleased to visit with the offers of redeeming love, even in the last moments of life, the ininds of such as have long been rebellious, and to pluck them as brands from the burning. But how unsafe is it to trust to a death-bed repentance!-how extremely unwise to defer the concerns of eternity to a dying hour! By continuing to slight the repeated visitations of divine grace, we may be given over

to a hard heart and a reprobate mind; nor do we know that we shall have an hour, nay, a moment to prepare! At midnight the cry may be heard, "Behold, the bridegroom cometh: go ye forth to meet him." How important, then, that all should be careful in their very early years, and as they grow up and advance in life, to mind the reproofs of instruction in their own breasts! They are known to be the way of life, divine life, to the soul. This something, though they know not what it is, that checks them in secret for evil, both before and after they yield to temptation; warning them beforehand not to touch or taste, and afterwards condemning them if they do so; and inwardly inclining them to a life of religion and virtue ;-this is the very thing, dear young people, whereby GOD worketh in you to will and to do; and by which, he will, if you cleave to it, and work with it, enable you to work out your own salvation, with fear and trembling before him. Despise it not; do no violence to its motions; love it, cherish it, reverence it; hearken to its pleadings with you, give up without delay to its requirings, and obey its teachings. It is God's messenger for good to thy immortal soul; its voice in thy streets is truly the voice of the living GOD. Its call is a kind invitation to thee from the throne of grace; hear it, and it will lead thee; obey it, and it will save thee from the power of sin and Satan; and it will finally lead thee to an inheritance incorruptible, in the mansions of rest, the house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

ON THE ATTENDANCE OF CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE ON PUBLIC WORSHIP.

[blocks in formation]

several Addresses were delivered, which were intended to point out the best methods of inducing habits of regular attendance on public worship in the young people, and that not only while they continue in the Schools, but also after they have left them.

The following is the substance of the hints brought forward by the different speakers.

1. It is lamentable that any necessity should exist for the consideration of such a question, in a place so highly distinguished for religious privileges, and where the Gospel and its invaluable institutions have been so long in operation. But, however much the fact may be regretted, it cannot be denied ; a highly respectable individual in this city having ascertained, that there are at least sixty thousand persons in Glasgow, and its vicinity, able to attend and yet absent from public worship every LORD's-day. This being the case, and no reasonable ground existing for the hope of any extensive change taking place in the habits of the up-grown part of the population, it becomes a serious and highly important question, to those who have the charge of the rising generation, how they may, in this respect, train them up in the way they should go.

2. In order, by the blessing of GOD, to attain this desirable end, they should be taught, convinced, and persuaded, by an explanation, application, and enforcement of those passages of the Sacred Scriptures which bear upon the subject, that it is their indispensable duty publicly to worship GoD, and that SchoolWorship, however excellent and useful, should rather be considered as a preparation, than as a substitute, for Public Worship.

3. At the same time, the most plain and pointed instructions should be given to the young people, as to the nature of that worship which GOD requires, and will accept. It is not every kind of attendance at

the house of God that will be pleasing to him. He requires the worship of the heart; and therefore must refuse the offerings, and condemn the persons, of the gay trifler, the formalist, the hypocrite, or the wicked.

4. In enforcing this duty, the promised advantages, whether temporal, spiritual, or eternal, which accompany and follow a right discharge of it, should be frequently presented to view.

5. The importance of proper, Christian, Public Worship, demands that it should be made a specific and constant subject of Sabbath-School instructions; that the young people should be frequently addressed upon it, in small companies and individually; that their excuses respecting clothes, &c., should be answered; and that they should be examined as to their behaviour in the house of GOD, and in reference to the discourses they have heard.

6. School-hours should be made to suit, and carefully guarded against any interference with, a regular attendance on Public Worship.

7. In order to carry into efficient operation any plan, embracing the object which at present engages our attention, it is absolutely necessary that the Trustees and Managers of Churches and Chapels should appropriate a sufficient portion of room for those young persons who belong to Sabbath-Schools, and are willing to attend such places, but cannot be accommodated with their Parents. It is also humbly suggested to the Ministers of the Gospel, that it is important that they should, as frequently as possible, visit SabbathSchools, and, by efforts to do them good, should gain the affections of the young ; and that, in feeding the flock of GOD, they should not wholly forget the "lambs," but should often introduce into their dis. courses something adapted to their situation, and specially directed to them.

THE CRUELTIES AND DEATH OF NACKEE KHAN.

To the Editor of the Wesleyan-Methodist

Magazine.

THE following account of the Cruelties of an Eastern Despot, of the remarkable preservation of an innocent man, and of GoD's judgment manifested in the destruction of the Tyrant, I have taken from the Second Volume of SIR ROBERT KER PORTER'S Travels, just published. W. W.

Chelsea, June 13, 1822.

THE Author, having related his introduction to one of the persons who were the objects of NACKEE KHAN's rapacious cruelty, gives the substance of the narrative, as recited by him, in the following manner :

Having, by intrigues and assassinations, made himself master of the regal power at Shiraz, this monster of human kind found that the Governor of Ispahan, instead of adhering to him, had proclaimed the accession of the lawful heir. No sooner was the news brought to NACKEE KHAN, than he put himself at the head of his troops, and set forward to revenge his contemned authority. When he arrived as far as Yesdikast, he encamped his army for a short halt, near the tomb on the north side. Being as insatiable of money as blood, he sent to the inhabitants of Yesdikast, and demanded an immense sum in gold, which he insisted should instantly be paid to his messengers. Unable to comply, the fact was respectfully pleaded in excuse, namely, that all the money the city had possessed, was already taken away by his own officers and those of the opposite party; and that, at present, there was scarce a Tomaun in the place.' Enraged at this answer, he repaired, full of wrath, to the town, and, or dering eighteen of the principal inhabitants to be brought before him, again demanded the money; but with threats and imprecations, which made the hearers tremble. Still, however, they could only return the same answer, their utter inability to pay; and the tyrant, without a moment's preparation, commanded the men to be seized, and hurled

.

[ocr errors]

from the top of the precipice, in his sight. Most of them were instantly killed on the spot; others, cruelly maimed, died in terrible agonies where they fell; and the describer of the dreadful scene was the only one who survived. He could form no idea of how long he lay, after precipitation, utterly senseless; 'but,' added he, by the will of GoD, I breathed again; and, on opening my eyes, found myself amongst the dead and mangled bodies of my former neighbours and friends. Some yet groaned.' He then related, that in the midst of his horror at the sight, he heard sounds of yet more terrible acts, from the top of the cliff: and momentarily strengthened by fear of he knew not what, (for he believed that death had already grasped his own poor shattered frame,) he managed to crawl away unperceived into one of the numerous caverned holes, which perforate the foot of the steep. He lay there in an expiring state the whole night; but, in the morning, was providentially discovered by some of the town's-people, who came to seek the bodies of their murdered relatives, to mourn over them, and take them away for burial. The poor man, feeble as he was, called to these weeping groups; and, to their astonishment and joy, they drew out one survivor from the dreadful heap of slain. No time was lost in conveying him home, and administering every kind of assistance; but many months elapsed before he was able to move from his house, so deep had been the injuries inflicted in his fall.

"In the course of his awful narrative, he told us, that the noise which had so appalled him, as he lay among the blood-stained rocks, was indeed the acting of a new cruelty of the Usurper. After having witnessed the execution of his sentence on the eighteen citizens, whose asseverations he had determined not to believe, NACKEE KHAN immediately sent for a devout man, called SAIED HASSAN, who was considered the sage of the place, and for his charities greatly beloved by

« PreviousContinue »