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val. Ankobar was to be the central point of missionary labours among the nominally Christian Abyssinians; and a mission was also proposed to be established among the neighbouring Pagan Galla tribes. We shall now extract a series of passages relative to the religion, manners, superstitions, and the civil and political condition of the people of Shoa.
"We have had several interviews with the King the last three days. He wishes to make use of us as physicians, architects, artists, &c. However, we told him that if we served him in these things to the extent of our power, which was very limited, we should do it only for the sake of the Lord and his Gospel; and requested him to give us an opportunity to preach the Gospel, and to instruct the youth. His usual reply is, 'I know this, and shall consult with you about it by and bye.'"
"June 13, 1839.-This morning we met the King at the place of judgment. He was sitting on an elevated spot, and the persons who had complaints or business were standing at the entrance of the King's house. Four judges sit to hear the complaints of the people, and decide upon them. If their decision should not please the King, he himself decides. In giving judgment, he spends several days every week. Having seen the manner in which the King gives judgment, we were then introduced to his workmen. Blacksmiths, weavers, and other tradesmen, are gathered within a large place, where each of them performs the piece of work assigned to him; which, having finished, he is obliged to show to the King, who, if not pleased with it, orders him to improve it. Thus the King could in a short time improve the state of arts in his kingdom, if he had a few skilful tradesmen from Europe."
"The Alaca (director) of the Church of Medhanalim at Ankobar was sent by the King to study our language. Mr. Isenberg began to instruct him; but after several lessons, he expressed his wish to be taught Geography. We had rather introduce to him biblical studies; but his mind is still not drawn to the great subjects of the Holy Scriptures. The name of this Alaca is Wolda Serat. Geography, it is true, is not enough to enlighten the Abyssinian people; but we must act as circumstances require. If we cannot preach the Gospel in a direct way, we must do it indirectly. To the various branches of knowledge, Scripture truth may in many ways be legiti
"The King is anxious to get from Europeans all that he sees and hears. It is, however, to be regretted, that he only endeavours to consult his own personal advantage and comfort, without reflecting upon the welfare of his people. Well qualified mechanics of all kinds are well received by the King, but they dare not expect European wages. They receive their daily maintenance, but that is all. I am sure that skilful artisans who are real Christians, would render great services to our Mission. How much the King seeks after his own interest, the following instances will prove. No man in Shoa, except the King, is allowed to prepare the Abyssinian hydromel, which is called Zatsh-prepared from water, honey, and a plant named zadoa. Furthermore, an Albanese, whose name is Johanes, who was formerly a Mahomedan, and turned a Christian in Shoa, built a bridge over the river Beresa; but nobody, except the King, is allowed to pass over it, even at the rainy season. This year four persons have been drowned in the river. Farther, he levies high customs upon goods. From ten pieces of salt he takes one: from ten dollars, one is paid to him. By these measures commerce is stopped. Demetrius, a Greek, built a mill; but nobody can use it."
"Our chief endeavours are directed to our calling as Missionaries, and therefore we have been able at present to make but few inquiries into the nature of the country. Our external condition is rather singular: the King treats us quite as his guests, sending us daily our maintenance into our house, and has ordered our Guardian to keep all troublesome persons away from us. By this means we are not molested by disagreeable calls; but, on the other hand, we are also prevented from frequently preaching the Gospel in season and out of season. We have, however, obtained a promise from the King, that such persons are not to be prohibited who express a desire to be instructed by us."
"The water of the Tshatsha runs in a deep dale between two mountains. The rivers Beresa and Tshatsha are said to go to the Nile. The Tshatsha separates the Gallas from Shoa. Thus we are on the frontiers of the heathen. The Lord grant that this heathenish nation, which has its seat in the centre of Africa, may soon become a people of God! I humbly and urgently beg the Committee to give their helping hand to this nation. The way to a great part of the Gallas is accessible since the way to Shoa has been opened. The access to the Gallas is easier
from Shoa than from any other place. We know about forty tribes of them by name. A great number of them are tributary to Shoa. The Gallas are in a low state of heathenism. They have not priests, like other heathens; but are opposed to the introduction of a new religion. They know only about a Being, whom they call Wake. They have no system of religion. On particular occasions, they sacrifice a cow, or sheep, to the Wake; but they are not directed to do so by priests: it is a freewill offering. The language is common to all Gallas. All these things seem to facilitate a Mission among them. A particular reason for attempting a Mission among the Gallas is, because we do not know what may be the result of our Mission in Shoa."
August 7, 1839.-This morning I asked Akaloo what the Abyssinians eat when they fast. He answered, that they were only allowed to eat goman, stinging nettles, and dry bread. The present fast is called the fast of Nahasie. Nahasie is our August. Then follows the Hodad fast, in the months of February and March, which lasts forty days; after which, in June, the fast of the Apostles, which lasts twenty-five or thirty days; and then the fast of Nineveh, which lasts three days. In the month of December is Tsoma ledat. Otherwise they fast every Wednesday and Friday. The fasts of Felsata, Hodadie, Apostles, as well as those of every week, are imposed on them as a work of necessity. As to keeping of the other fasts, it is voluntarily. Thus they pass a great part of the year in fasting, seeking thereby their own righteousness. If a person does not fast, he is separated from the Church; and if he does not repent, he is not interred in the common burial ground."
"Children are exempted from fasting till they are twelve years of age, except when they go to the Lord's Supper, when they are compelled to fast. Once in the year, that is to-day, they are obliged to take the blessed sacrament. Any one who spits, or plucks off a leaf from a tree, is not admitted to the communion-table. They receive a white cloth from the church, in which they are enveloped up to the mouth, and stand from morning till the evening, observing the greatest silence; but they do not understand anything about the ceremony. I asked a boy whether he knew why he took the blessed sacrament; when he replied, because it made him grow."
"I spoke to our copyist about the conversion of the Gallas. He said that the Gallas do not like the Christian Religion, and say that the people of Shoa are not better than themselves; that they
will not bear the heavy yoke which is imposed on them by fasting; and that they are offended at the Ethiopic language to them an unknown languagein which they are taught by the Abyssinians."
"The people of Shoa, like those of Tigré, do not like the Amharic very much, but prefer the Ethiopic. We endeavour to prove, that as the Amharic is the language of the country, and as the Ethiopic requires a long study, the Amharic is much more preferable to an unknown language. We refer them to 1 Cor. xiv., where St. Paul is speaking about the uselessness of speaking in an unknown tongue."
"I should be very glad if I had a better knowledge of the Amharic language; but I hope, with the assistance of God, to improve it every day. Mr. Isenberg has finished his Geography, which he began to write at Angollala. He intends to write a brief Universal History. A Spelling-book was composed by him at Angollala. We have made copies of those works written by Abyssinians.”
"Religious conversations always revert to the worshipping of saints, fasting, ceremonies, &c. To-day I had again a long conversation with a priest of St. George's, and some other persons present, which began with speaking on Tecla Haimanot, in honour of whom four annual festivals are celebrated, when many patients are said to be cured from various diseases. The chief place for the celebration of these festivals is Debra Libanos, where there seems to be a mineral water, effectual particularly against rheumatism, paralysis, &c. Tecla Haimanot, they say, on arriving there from his journey, and being thirsty, prayed to God to open a fountain; when, through the agency of the archangel Michael, water sprang up at his feet, coming from Jordan. When this story was told to us to-day, we expressed our disbelief; and added, that we wanted neither true nor false miracles, as the miracles of Christ and His Apostles were quite sufficient."
Priest Abba Tseddoo gave us this evening some details concerning the government, discipline, and usages of their Church. The number of priests and deacons which are thought necessary for each Church, is twenty; one third of whom have to officiate during one week, while the other two thirds rest. There are, however, few Churches at present in this kingdom which possess the full number, owing to the want of an Abuna, or bishop, for the last eleven years, to ordain priests and deacons; so that there are many churches which have been shut for want of priests. During the week the priests officiate, they live apart
from their families. Each priest has a number of spiritual children. In one sense, all those who are under his clerical care as penitents, to whom he administers absolution and sacrament, are his spiritual children; but more strictly, the boys who go to him to be instructed, and entrust themselves to his special clerical care."
"I asked Abba Tseddoo, what was done when an excommunicated person died before his time had transpired. He answered, that in such cases the priest endeavoured to prepare the dying penitent; that if the latter really repented of his sins, the priest promised to take half the remaining time of penitence upon himself, and to work it out by fasting and prayer; and for the other half, he endeavoured to persuade him, if he possessed any property, to distribute it among the poor, the priests, and monks; to order Tescars-feastings to the clergy and the poor in remembrance of the dead person, for the purpose of encouraging many prayers for him-to see prayers performed, and the Lord's Supper administered in his favour; and thus the priest dismissed the dying person with the absolution, and then the latter would, after his death, arrive in the Sheol -intermediate place between hell and heaven-where he had to stay until by his alms, tescars, prayers, fastings, and communion (masses) he got to heaven. I asked him, whether this discipline was really observed. He replied, very seldom; though it is still acknowledged."
"After the priest had left me, I thought it fit to consult with Brother Isenberg respecting fasting, before he departed. First, we considered that the omission of fasting had been a continual stumbling block in the eyes of the Abyssinians since the commencement of our Mission in this country; secondly, that fasting is not sinful in itself, and hence not against the principles of the Bible, nor the Church of England; and thirdly, we referred to the examples of the Apostles, particularly to that of St. Paul, who though he strictly adhered to justification by faith, yet condescended in this respect of his own accord to the weakness of his brethren. Relying on this great example, we thought we could, with the Lord's assistance, resolve to fast, but only voluntarily and out of love to our brethren, not seeking thereby our own righteousness."
“November 12.—This morning I bid farewell to my Brother Isenberg, recommending him to our covenant God, on his long journey. My heart was deeply moved, and I could not but weep, knowing that I was alone in this country. The words of Christ, Lo, I am with you
alway, even unto the end of the world, strengthened me."
"November 17, 1839.-I saw this afternoon a sad spectacle. Five hundred slaves were brought to Ankobar from Gurague. When will the time come that slavery, this disgrace of mankind, will be abolished in all Christian countries !"
"December 28.-To-day my luggage arrived from Tadjurra. The King wished to possess many of the things; and several priests having heard that my books had arrived, came to me, bringing with them Ethiopic books, which they wished to change for Ethiopic New Testaments."
"January 1, 1840.-A new year. May it be a year of grace to my heart, as well as to the whole of Abyssinia ! While I was reflecting upon the past year, pouring out my heart in confessing my sins, and thanking the Lord for all the spiritual and temporal gifts which He had bestowed upon me, the King's boy came, delivering to me 250 dollars which Ali Arab had brought. I again gave thanks to God, who knows the wants of His people. People are continually coming and asking for books. Would that I had a large quantity !"
January 22, 1840.-This morning, about nine o'clock, the King departed from Angollala on an expedition against the Galla Tribes in the south of Shoa, and I was ordered to follow him in company with M. Rochet."
"The King sent his boy Beru, to request me to go on a hill from whence I could see the troops passing, and to tell the King how many I thought there were. I rested about an hour, seeing the people arriving from all directions; finally, I went my way, thinking there were about fifteen thousand men. withstanding this, others will arrive in a few days from Shoa, and the country of the Gallas. The most beautiful horses and mules were to be seen. How powerful a king Sahela Selassieh might become, if his troops were disciplined, and his country civilized!"
"As the Gallas of Sululta did not pay their tribute in horses and cows, the King gave orders for all their villages to I did not care be destroyed by fire. much to know the names of the Galla villages, as they are destroyed almost on every expedition. The soldiers take all they can get in the houses, and then
From the date of August 18, 1840, there is a blank to March 10, 1842, when Mr. Krapf was preparing to leave Ankobar for
Egypt, by the route of Gondar and Massowah. For the dates, and other particulars, we refer to the abstract of the Church Missionary Society's Abyssinian affairs, above inserted. The journey from Ankobar to Massowah, the journal of which occupies the remainder of the volume, was full of hardship and peril; and a considerable portion of it lay through a country never before trodden by any European traveller. The difficulties were fearfully increased by reason of the traveller having been plundered of his property by a treacherous chief. The details are therefore geographically important; but Mr. Krapf's special object in selecting this arduous route was to ascertain what encouragement there might be for Missionary labours in other provinces of Abyssinia besides Shoa, and to learn the mind of the new Abuna and the King of Tigrè. He was, however, mercifully preserved, and worked his way to Egypt, where he completed a matrimonial engagement, which he had in view in repairing thither. At Alexandria he was joined by Mr. Muhleison, whom the Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem had ordained, at the chapel of Mount Zion, for the Eastern African Mission; and also by Mr. Isenberg, who had been most usefully occupied in England in translating, and carrying through the press, the Amharic Liturgy, and other important works in the same language. The three Missionaries proceeded in November, 1842, to Aden, and thence to Tadjurra, on their way to Shoa; but obstacles intervened; and the last intelligence we have of them, under date of last August, is that the three Missionaries (we suppose that Mrs. Krapf did not accompany them) had attempted to re-enter Tigrè from Massowah, but had been foiled in the effort, and were obliged to leave the country; that Krapf had repaired to Aden, to attempt to reach the Galla
tribes; and that his colleagues had returned to Cairo, to wait instructions from home. tions from home. We do not believe that, in the providence of God, the door is permanently closed against Missionary entrance into Abyssinia, or among the heathen tribes in its vicinity. The considerations with which we opened our remarks rivet our attention with much eagerness upon Eastern Africa. The treaty concluded two years ago, between Queen Victoria and the rude but powerful King of Shoa, provides for security of person and property, and freedom of movement, for her Majesty's subjects in and beyond the Shoa dominions. In all human probability, European, and especially British, influence will soon be powerfully felt in Eastern Africa; for the intercourse between England and India, by the Red Sea, will open marts for commerce, of which Africans as well as Europeans will find the value. In the mean time the way is being prepared, and, we will not believe in vain, for the promulgation of the Gospel of Christ in its purity in Abyssinia, where it has been corrupted; and its penetration where it is not known. The Church Missionary Society has sent out Christian pastors, and the Bible Society printed the Sacred Scriptures; and may we not hope that He who put it into the hearts of his servants to attempt this great work for the glory of his name, the building up of Christ's kingdom, and the salvation of souls, will graciously accept their feeble efforts. The present checks are discouraging; but it would be to distrust God to say that they will be permanent and insuperable. The Church Missionary Society has had an example afforded in the case of New Zealand (not to mention other instances, or other much-honoured Societies) of what God can effect beyond all that his servants hoped or thought.
BEING THE SIXTH VOLUME OF THE NEW SERIES.
RELIGIOUS AND MISCELLANEOUS COMMUNICATIONS.
AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF BISHOP PATRICK.
(Concluded from page 719 of Dec. No.)
E are persuaded that our readers, after perusing the interesting passages from Bishop Patrick's autobiographical detail in our December Number, will gladly receive a few more extracts. We will not repeat what we have stated in regard to the character and opinions of this amiable, learned, devout, and diligent prelate; but lest what we said respecting his views upon the doctrine of justification by faith should be thought unfounded, we will copy a few lines from his Paraphrase on Romans ix.; and the rather, as not observing the title of this tractate in a list of more than fifty of his publications; so that we conclude that it slept in manuscript till recently published with the autobiography.
"The Apostle having evidently proved the foregoing part of his letter, that jus tification is to be obtained by faith in Christ, and not by the works of Moses' law, which is as much as to say, that it is to be enjoyed by the Christian religion, and not by the Jewish, it necessarily followed, that they who adhered to Moses, so as to reject the Gospel, were out of the way of God, and so must be rejected by Him, when they demanded righteousness and acceptance at His hands."
"Chapter ix. ver. 1. 'I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,' that is, 'You may think very hard of me, because I preach justification by faith, or Christianity, and not by observing Moses' law."
This doctrine of "justification by Christianity," as a synonyme for justification by faith, is a leading error of the theology of Bishop Patrick's school, and displaces the whole structure of the covenant of grace. True, the Apostle Paul contrasts Christianity with Judaism; and shows that men could not be justified by the ceremonial, any more than by the moral, law; but faith is placed in contradistinction to works, whether those works be moral or ceremonial, legal or Christian.
We will now, without comment, conclude our extracts.
In the summer 1681, several ministers at London met together and combined to make a short commentary on the Bible; and every one had his part assigned him. 5 F
CHRIST. OBSERV. APP.