Page images

2 lared on Tuesdarkbam Terna

chapel in Cornwall Road, Kensington. This is the were afterwards delivered by the Rev. Mr. Davis, first of four chapels which our honoured friend the Rev. Mr. Bigwood, and others, when the pro. Sir Morton Peto bas announced his intention to ceedings were adjourned to the large erect in the metropolis ; almost the only condition of the Rev. Mr. Spurgeon's Metropolitan Taberannexed by Sir Morton to his proposal being, that nacle, where tea was served. half the money needed shall be advanced by the denomination for a period extending over ten

CORNWALL ROAD, KENSINGTON.-On Wedn-gyears. The Committee of the Baptist Building

day, July 1st, the new chapel in Cornwall Road, Fund, acting in this matter for the denomination,

Kensington, recently erected by Sir Morton Peto, bave announced their resolution to comply with

was opened for public worship. The chuo

stands on a plot of ground not far from the cunthis condition; and they now appeal to their friends to supply them with the necessary funds,

templated railway station, and within a few

moments' walk of Notting Hill Gate. The style We cannot doubt that the funds will be forth

of architecture is somewhat novel, but at the same coming. A number of generous friends of the body bave already promised considerable sums.

time pleasing, the front being beautifully arched

and embellished. Sittings are provided for more We hope soon to be enabled to announce that the noble proposals of Sir Morton Peto, to whose

than 1,000 persons, although the original plan was zeal and liberality we already owe so much, havo

only for the accommodation of about 600. The

seats are all open, and the utmost care has been been fully and definitely accepted.

taken with regard to light and ventilation, while

the warming of the building has not been forDOMESTIC.

gotten. The style of the decorations of the in

terior would, perhaps, be thought by some to be UPTON CHAPEL, LAMBETH ROAD, LONDON.

out of place, but they are truly chaste, tasteful, The foundation-stone of a new chapel, in connec

and altogether novel. The roof is beautifully tion with the Baptist denomination, in the course

arched with supporting columns, and the prevailof erection in Barkham Terrace, Lambeth Road,

ing colours of the decorations are blue, gold, and was laid on Tuesday, July 14th, in the presence of

white, the whole of which were designed and a large assemblage, by Sir Morton Peto, Bart.,

executed by Mr. Owen Joner. The opening M.P. The chapel is for the accommodation of

service was held at twelve o'clock, when, after the the congregation recently worshipping in Church

usual devotional services, an able and most imStreet, Blackfriars Road, at present under the

pressive sermon was preached from Gen. xlii. 27, pastorate of the Rev. William Barker, who, like

by the Rev. William Brock. The sermon was many others, have been disinherited to make way

listened to with deep attention by the large confor railway extension, but who have obtained

gregation assembled. At the close of the service from the London, Chatham, and Dover Railway

a large number of ladies and gentlemen assembled Company a sum sufficient to enable them to erect

in a spacious marquee, for dinner, to which they a chapel and a minister's house as large as those

had been courteously invited by Sir Morton and which have been demolished. The church foi

Lady Peto. In the evening an excellent and whom the new edifice is intended was stated to

eloquent sermon was preached by the Rev. W. have been seventy-eight years old on the 31st of

Landels. The Rev. J. A. Spurgeon, late of May last, having first assembled for public wor.

Southampton, bas commenced his labours in this ship on the 24th day of July, 1785, in the midst of

new and important spbere of effort. an eventful period in the religious history of the Hook NORTON. Oxon. The closing services of denomination as well as of the nation at large. the pastorate of the Rev. W. H. Cornish took Originally it consisted of only twelve persons, who place on Sunday, June 21st, when he selected for commenced their meetings in a small place in his texts, in the morning, Acts xx. 36-38; in the Green Walk, since transformed into Church afternoon, 2 Thess, iii, 18; in the evening. Luke street; but it had illustrated the truth of the pro xxi. 34-36. The congregations were unusually mise of the little one becoming a thousand, for large, and the discourses impressive. On the fol. since then 1,528 persons at least had been received lowing day (Monday) an eloquent sermon was into fellowship with it, and the present number of preached by the Rev. A. W. Heritage, of Naun. members was above 250. The Rev. James Upton, ton, from 1 Cor. iii. 21. This was followed by a of Waltham Abbey, was the first pastor; and as a social tea at six o'clock, after which a public meet. memorial tribute and acknowledgment of his ing commenced, which was presided over by faithful and successful labours in connection with Wm. Cubitt, Esq., of Banbury, treasurer of the it for the long period of forty-eight years, it had Oxfordshire Association. The Rev. William been resolved to place his name on the front of Cherry, of Milton, offered a rery earnest and the new building. The building itself will be of appropriate prayer for the retiring pastor. After plain Italian character, the front being of white which the Rev. G. Grant, of Darlington (IndeSuffolk brick, with the columns and architectural pendent), the Rev. J. Taylor (Wesleyan) of features of Portland stone. The only carved Chipping Norton Circuit, the Rev. T. Eden, of decorations will be the filling in of the arch on the Chadlington, the Rev. W. Heritage, of Naunton, pediment with an open book, palm branches, and the Rev. C. Eden, of Bloxham, the Rev, J. Lam. the descending dove, which, as shown on the plan, bert, of Milton, the Rev. W. Omant, of Stow-onimparts to it a light, pleasing effect. The interior the-Wold, the Rev. F. F. Metcalf, of Middleton dimensions will be 45 feet by 67 feet, and the Cheney, expressed their deep sympathy with Mr. building will contain about 800 hearers, together Cornish, and earnest desire for his abundant use. with about 180 children. In the basement there fulness in his new sphere of labour. Mr. Cornish will be a lecture-hall or school-room, with four briefly addressed the meeting, and said that more class-rooms, and at the rear of the building will be than one-fourth of the present number of memvestry, minister's room, committee-room, and bers in the church at Hook Norton had been rooms for the chapel-keeper. Mr. J. E. Good received into it by his instrumentality, and that child is the architect, and the contractors are God had answered his prayers in opening before Messrs. Jackson and Shaw; the contract price, in him a large sphere of labour. After some kind and cluding the dwelling-house for the minister, being judicious remarks from the chairman, the benedic£4,790. Sir Morton Peto having gone through tion was pronounced, and the proceedings terthe usual ceremony of laying the stone, addresses I minated.

SNAILBEACH, SALOP.-The anniversary services were held in the Baptist chapel at the above place on Sunday and Monday, June 21st and 22nd. Sermons were preached on the Sunday at half-past ten by the Rev. E. Owen, of Sarn, from Matt. xxv. 10; at two o'clock by the Revg. G. Phillips, of Evenjobb, from Deut. xxx. 6, and E. Evang, the pastor, from 18. lv. 1; in the evening at six, hy the Revs. G. Phillips, from Eccl. ix. 14, 15, and

E. Owen, from 1 Tim. vi. 19. Collections were made at the close of each service. On the Monday a tea-meeting was held in the chapel, which was tastefully decorated with flowers, evergreens, &c. About 300 sat down to tea. A public meeting was subsequently held. The Rev. J. Dore, of Pontesbury, introduced the service by reading and prayer. Brief discourses were then delivered as follows: by the Revs. T. Baugh, of Shrewsbury, from Acts viii. 26; E. Owen, from John xvi. 13; G. Phillips, from Nehemiah ix. 17; and C. F. Vernon, of Shrewsbury, from Ps. lxxxix. 15. The services throughout were of an interesting and profitable character, and largely attended on both evenings. The collections were also liberal.

PETERCHURCI, HEREFORDSHIRE.-The anni. versary in connection with the Baptist church here was held in the afternoon and evening of Tuesday, June 30th, when between three and four hundred persons assembled to tea, &c. After tea an open-air meeting was held in front of the chapel, when Mr. Sinclair (the pastor of the church), the Revs. C. Burleigb, of Oroop, F. Wiles, of Hay, T. Williams, of Longtown, W. Jones, of Kingstone, and Mr. H. Hossack, of Michaelchurch, delivered, respectively, addresses on “The Power of a Holy Example,” “The Power of Prayer," “ Christian Sympathy," “ The Christian Imitating the Example of his Divine Lord and Master," and on “The Importance of being Decided for Christ.” Mr. Powell, of Snod. hill, and Mr. Jones, of Preston-on-Wye, implored the Divine blessing to rest on the proceed. ings of the meeting.

LLANIDLOES.-The anniversary of the Baptist church in this town was held on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 23rd and 24th. The services were conducted in the following order :-On the Tuesday, at six p.m., the Revs, W. Roberts, of Rhos, and J. Rhys Morgan, of Llanelly, preached in Welsh. On the Wednesday, at ten a.m., the Rev. E. Davies, of Newtown, preached in English, and the Rev. J. R. Morgan, in Welsh. At two p.m. the Rev. E. Davies preached in English, and the Rev. W. Roberts, in Welsh. At six p.m, the Rev. J. R. Morgan delivered a lecture in Welsh; subject, “Various Sorts of People.” The Rev. D. Rowlands, M.A., occupied the chair on the occasion. About 900 persons were admitted by tickets. The meetings all through were mogt edifying and interesting.

RHYL, NORTH WALES.-On Thursday, June 25th, the newly ereoted English Baptist chapel, Sussex Street, Rhyl, was opened for Divine service. In consequence of this important and rapidly increasing town having no English Baptist cbapel, and the want of accommodation for public worship being severely felt in the summer, when visitors flock to this favourite watering-place, a few friends courageously resolved to take the initiative in the erection of a new chapel. They have accordingly provided a beautiful freehold edifice, with large school-rooms and a lecture-ball in the rear. The services were conducted on the day of opening by the Rev. Hugh Stowell Brown, on the following Sunday by the Rev. N. Haycroft, and on Tuesday in the morning by the Rev. C. Vince, and in the evening by the Rev. W. Brock.

BRYMBO, NORTH WALES.-Recognition services were held at the above place, June 28th and 29th, in connection with the settlement of the Rev. J. Jones, late of Bala, as pastor of the Baptist churches at Brymbo and Moss, On Sunday, the 28th, powerful sermons were delivered by the newly elected pastor and the Rev. J. D. Williams, of Bangor; and on Monday, the 29th, by the Revs. A. J. Parry, of Cefnmawr, W. Roberts, of Rhos, and W. Thomas, of Liverpool. The meet. ings were better attended than on any previous occasion, and the good done, it is hoped, is great and everlasting. Mr. Jones commences his ministry here with every prospect of success.

KINGSTON-ON-THAMES.-The anniversary services in connection with the Baptist chapel were held on Tuesday, June 16th, when two sermons were preached by the Rev. C. H. Spurgeon. The congregations were very large, and the collections amounted to £30. Between the services about 150 persons sat down to tea. The Rev. Henry Bayley presided, surrounded by many of the neighbouring Dissenting ministers. Through the kindness of the Independent friends these ser. vices were held in their chapel, the new Baptist chapel being now in course of erection.

Dolton, NORTH DEVON.-A recognition tea. meeting was beld in the Baptist chapel, Dolton, on the 29th of June, when the Rev. J. W. Webb was publicly welcomed as pastor; the Rev. W. Norman, of Hatherleigh, the Rev. J. Rockey, of Petrockstow, and other ministers, addressing ex. cellent counsels and encouragements to the pastor, the church, and the congregation. The attendance was unusually good.

MINISTERIAL CHANGES.--The Rev. J. H. Mil. Jard, B.A., having relinquished his charge at Maze Pond, London, after a pastorate of five years, has accepted the unanimous invitation of the church at Huntingdon, to return to bis former sphere of labour. He commences his ministry on the first Sunday in August. -The Rev. James Clough, of Rawdon College, has accepted a unanimous call to the pastorate of the Baptist church at Malton, and commenced his ministerial labours there on the third Sunday in July.-The Rev. W. H. Cornish, of Hook Norton, Oxon, has ac. cepted the unanimous invitation of the church at Stafford, to become their pastor, and entered upon his new sphere of labour on the first Lord's day in June. - The Rev. F. Perkins, M.A., of Rawdon College, near Leeds, has accepted a unanimous invitation from the church meeting in Ebenezer Chapel, Coseley, to become their pastor, and com: menced his labours on Sunday, the 19th of July. Mr. J. Light, late of Dolton, Devon, has accepted the unanimous invitation of the Baptist church at Blackfield Common, Hants, to become its pastor, and has entered on his duties.-The Rev. W. Evans, late of Rhymney, Monmoutbsbire, having supplied the Baptist church at Blakeney, Gloucestershire, for the last four months, has consented, after a very cordial invitation, to remain twelve months longer.-The Rev. D. Pledge, after 8 settlement of nine years, has resigned his pas. torate of the church at Union Chapel, High Wycombe, and terminates his labours there the last Lord's day in September.-The Rev. E. Stenson has resigned his charge at Sutton St. James, and is open to invitation from any desti. tute church. Address, “Kislingbury, near Weedon, Northamptonshire." -The Rev. J. H. Lummis, late of Ford Forge, has accepted the pastorate of the Baptist church, Hamsterley, Durham, and purposes to enter upon his labours the first Sabbath in August,

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

“Built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the.

chief corner-stone."



John iv. 11–14.

BY THE REV. JAMES CULROSS, A.M. The Lord must needs go through Samaria. He comes about noon to Jacob's well, in the neighbourhood of Sychar, and sits down to rest, being weary with his journey, while his disciples go to buy meat. As he rests, a poor, ignorant, sinful woman of Samaria comes to draw water. Jesus enters into conversation

with her, saying, “ Give me to drink.” Nothing could be more natural. Yet, E natural as it is, the woman is surprised at it. She sees that the stranger is a

Jew, and she has mind of the deep-rooted enmity between the two races, which prevented all friendly intercourse, and she is surprised and pleased that this Jew, unlike his countrymen, is so friendly and ready to converse; and she gives expression to her surprise and pleasure, saying, with almost a child's

simpleness, “How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, who am a A woman of Samaria !” The Lord takes no notice of the enmity to which she by alluded, but addressing that deep longing after happiness which lay in her

bosom, he answers, “If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith it to thee, Give me to drink, thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have

given thee living water.” The gift of God: what was that? There was a gift of God, that living water which sprang so clear in Jacob's well. And that gift is taken and made use of to lead the woman's thoughts to a higher gift, even the gift of salvation which God was giving in his Son. Like living water, the salvation of God is fitted to quench and satisfy the heart's thirst for happiness ; and like living water, too, it is a gift, a gift divinely free, a gift whose very purpose is to manifest the exceeding riches of God's grace. The creed of the natural heart is that God is an Exactor, demanding a righteousness of us, saying, Pay me that thou owest," and threatening, if we fail, to deliver us to the tormentors. Jesus begins by teaching that God is a Giver; and that the salvation which man needs is not to be bought, but accepted as a gift. This, then, is one thing that Jesus speaks of: the gift of God.He says also, “and who it is that speaks to thee'..-the Christ, the Saviour of sinners, the Dispenser of the Father's bounty and mercy, to whom all things have been committed, the God-man, whose love shall fill eternity with its glory, and its

gladness, and its wonder. He means to lift up the woman's thoughts to Himi po self, who is God's unspeakable gift, in whom all gifts are included, and whom it is eternal life to know

“Thou wouldest have asked, and he would have given.” It is a declaration both of his riches and his grace. It is as much as to say, Ask, and I will give.

He will be prayed unto: he does but wait our seeking : and his very call to ask to earries in it the promise that he will bestow. If one waits on you in right

[ocr errors]

grounded trust, even if it is only a poor dumb creature looking up into your face with pleading eyes, you do not disappoint the trust. No more will he. It is not, of course, to the mere outward and empty form that his blessed promise is given. If the heart has no share in what the lips utter, we need not wonder if he is silent to us. Here, then, is an invitation to our hearts to ask; one of those shining invitations that are set as thick as stars in the heaven of Scripture. I remember sitting many years ago by the bed-side of a young man who had misused a richly gifted life, and was now dying ; “just going down the dim shores,” he said, “to embark for that undiscovered country" which lies out in the eternal ocean. I can still see that pale, sunken cheek, that eye bright with the ghastly fires of death, those thin, white fingers that waved so meaningly and solemnly when he whispered a few low words. He was weak and pained, and quite unable to follow a connected train of thought; but his mind laid hold with apparent confidence and delight upon the Saviour's invitations. I remember thinking, as I sat beside him and marked this, what grace is shown in issuing these short invitations, that flash like golden sunbeams right into the heart, and what a different book the Bible would be if they were wanting. Suppose the doctrines of grace to remain untouched, but that an inspired pen were made to go through Scripture, erasing the invitations, drawing a red stroke across them, to signify that they are taken back: how the face of Scripture would be darkened! Your sins are brought into memory some day, far-back and forgotten sins, and you turn up one after another of the invitations that had been your encouragement to draw near to a pardoning God before ; and there is the red stroke running through them. Or your soul is cast down and disquieted within you; deep calleth unto deep; all his waves and his billows are gone over you; and you turn to some invitation bidding you “ Call upon me in the day of trouble :” and there again is the red stroke cancelling it. Some trembling sinner you are trying to lead to the Saviour ; but he is afraid, and draws back, and exclaims, I am too vile : Jesus will never receive one like me ; and to encourage him to come you turn to some of the Saviour's invitations; but the first one you turn to there is the red stroke through it, showing that it is erased. Could any one conceive the greatness of that calamity? To blot out the invitations, even though the doctrines of grace should all stand, were like sweeping a mother's face of its love-looks, and smiles, and thousand tendernesses, though her mother-heart might remain unchanged.

The unspiritual woman does not know what the stranger means, but misses the figure, as did Nicodemus when the Lord taught him of the new birth, or as those Jews did who strove among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Supposing that he meant water like that which she had come to draw, she says, “ Sir” (she had not used the common term of respect at first: she uses it now), “ thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: whence then hast thou that living water?” She would know whence and how this stranger could give her the living water of which he spoke. And then, too, he had thrown a mystery round his person: he had said, “If thou knewest who it is” that speaks to thee: and she would penetrate this mystery: she would know who the stranger was, and what his dignity; so she adds, “ Art thou greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle ? " There is here the mingling of a wish to know who it is that speaks, and to uphold the credit of Jacob's well ; with also a touch of Samaritan pride in the whole tone of the question, particularly in that word “our father Jacob,” mine as well as thine. Little wist she who the Stranger was. This was he whose goings forth were from of old, from everlasting; whose day Abraham desired to see, and he saw it afar ofl, and was glad ; who met her father Jacob at Bethel and at Peniel, and who guided and blessed him all his life long, and redeemed him from all evil; who *led the children of Jacob through the deserts, who caused waters to flow out of the rock for them, who clave the rock also, and the waters gushed out, and who brought them to the border of his sanctuary, even to this mountain, which his right hand had purchased." All greatness pales before his greatness. The world has seen nothing comparable to it. All other greatness has been fragmentary, imperfect, unsymmetrical, with flaws and stains ; but (whether you think of his person, or his character, or his achievements) his was complete, harmonious, sinless, Divine; rising above our loftiest conceptions, belonging not to earth and time, but to heaven and eternity. Call up the vision of world's greatness ; monarchs with jewelled crowns, sitting on thrones of state, surrounded with princes, and counsellors, and warrior chiefs ; banners torn in famous battles hung up overhead, and the loud acclaim of glad multitudes swelling on the air : that greatness grows dim and stained before the greatness of the Man of Sorrows. Call up the vision of mental greatness ; all masterspirits, all thinkers of great thoughts, all speakers of mighty or immortal words, all who have swayed invisible sceptres in the realms of mind : that greatness. too, grows pale before the greatness of Him who has revealed the Infinite and the Eternal. Call up the vision of moral greatness : come forward from all climes and ages, all ye men of heroic virtues, of meekness, and patience, and holy charity, all saintly doers, all strong, calm-browed sufferers, all ye who have resisted unto blood, striving against sin, all white-robed palm-bearers, all winners of the martyr's crown: ye cast your honours at His feet! Your greatness, too, grows pale before the greatness of the holy, harmless, undefiled One, the Immortal Love, the glorious Sufferer who by the travail of his soul has won salvation for us. Call up the vision of heavenly greatness ; “ bright seraphim in burning row," and the cherubic host,"

“ With those just spirits that wear victorious palms,
Hymns devout and holy psalms

Singing everlastingly." The angels of God worship him: to him the everlasting singing is raised. Yea, all greatness bows the knee, and does him homage. The Holy One is there, though no visible glory burns round his bead: the King of eternity is there, though no visible diadem shines on his brow: angels wait on his nod, and fly at his bidding, though he leans there so weary and worn. In the words of an old writer, “ He that sat upon the well had a throne placed above the heads of the cherubim : in his arms who there rested himself was the sanctuary of rest and peace, where wearied souls were to lay their heads, and dispose their cares, and there turn them into joys, and to gild their thorns with glory : that holy tongue, which was parched with heat, streamed forth rivulets of holy doctrine, which were to water all the world, to turn our deserts into paradise ; and though he begged water at Jacob's well, yet Jacob drank at big."

It is the knowing of his greatness that makes faith great; even as the child's confidence in his father rises with a knowledge of his father's power. Weak faith means low, poor thoughts of the Saviour. Knowing who he is, and how great, I can trust him with everything, for both worlds; I honour him even as also I honour the Father ; I surrender myself to his will ; I feel myself safe in his keeping; yea, I can bid a calm farewell to weeping friends, and go down through mortal amazements into eternity (no longer dark and lonesome) with the whisper on my lips, “I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed to him against that day.”

The woman's ear is now gained, and her heart interested in the Stranger's words ; so he leads her on toward the light, adding, “Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: but whoscerer drinketh of the water that I

« PreviousContinue »