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ticipater in all your joys and sorrows, we would more fully express the admiration with which we behold the triumph of Christian devotedness over the timidity and sensitiveness of the female character, in relinquishing the peaceful comforts and delights of home, and all the tender endearing associations connected therewith, for the trials and privations of the missionary life.
We rejoice, Sir, that a minister of our church has been exalted to the honourable station of a Missionary of the Cross to the Heathen world. Other Christian churches in our land have been honoured hereby much sooner than the Synod of Ulster ; but we are thankful that she now can joyfully exclaim, “The Lord hath taken away my reproach.”—May many of her sons follow your example, and tread in your footsteps.
We return you our heart-felt thanks for your faithful and affectionate address to us, on the evening of the day you were set apart to your present destination, when you so scripturally and powerfully enforced the imperative duty and urgent necessity of Christian Missions to the Heathen, and proclaimed the distinguished honour of being called to labour in that field. We have heard the same good cause advocated frequently, but never in circumstances so solemn and affecting ; we saw in our counsellor, one who had devoted himself to that work, we knew that the words which dropped from his lips were, indeed, the utterance of the heart, and ture years will reveal that your words were not in vain.
We beg leave to congratulate you on the exalted dignity to which you are advanced, as it is our firm conviction that there is not on earth a more honorable station, that there is not a greater benefactor of mankind than the humble faithful Missionary of Christ. We do not attempt to offer you our worthless applause, but would unite with you in ascribing all glory to God alone, who causes his servants “to will and to do of his good pleasure." But we could not refrain from expressing our veneration for the exalted character of the Christian Missionary, for we know that an ungodly world has always made him the theme of its injurious surmises and slanderous aspersions; but such was its spirit and couduct, to his Blessed Master : and if it “called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more they of his household.” “Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for His sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad—for so persecuted they the prophets that were before you.?. We wonder not at its calumnies, for it knows nothing of the holy principles that influence his conduct; he seeks not that in which it places its happiness the honours, or riches, or pleasures of this vain world ; be seeks higher and holier ends the glory of God, and the salvation of men. He may be despised and reproached, enduring many afflictions and privations, but he has joys with which a stranger cannot intermeddle-a peace that the world can neither give nor take is obeying the last injunction of his blessed Lord, go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel unto every creature. He experiences the faithfulness of him who hath promised," 10, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” Often is he privileged to witness the blessing of the Lord upon his labours, in the conversion of the Heathen from darkness to light, and from dumb idols to the service of the living God: to behold the moral wilderness around him gladden, and the desert to rejoiee and bloom as the rose; but should he not be privileged to see this happy consummation of his work, still he can labor on in assured faith, and unsha
ken confidence in those blessed promises of the omnipotent and immutable God of truth“my word shall not return to me void, it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” “I have sworn by myself the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return: that unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.” “The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters covers the sea.” When his labours are ended, he may sink into the grave unnoticed and unknown—he may expire like HENRY MAR. TYN, in a solitary wilderness, or like the martyred SMITH, in a gloomy dungeon, but he has his blessed Saviour to cheer him in death-bis rod and staff to comfort him; and through his infinite merits be shall then receive a kingdom that cannot be moved--a crown of glory that fadeth pot away.
Farewell, dear Sir,--the blue waters of the Atlantic will soon roll between us, but you shall not be forgotten. We will earnestly supplicate the omnipresent Jehovah to bless you and your family with his choicest blessings. In our Missionary Prayer: Meetings we will unite in fervent prayer, for abundant blessings on your labours; and henceforth we will feel that we are connected by a closer tie to the Heathen world. Whilst we rejoice in hearing of the progress of the Gospel, by the instrumentality of any sect or dame, we shall feel peculiar delight in the success of the Scottish Mis. sionary Society; and, above all, in the blessing of God on your labours. Might we hope that you would occasionally give us such intelligence; we would, indeed, be refreshed thereby--we would then experience the truth of the proverb, “as cold water to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country.”
May the God of all grace supply all your wants out of that fulness, which is treasured up in Christ Jesus. May be give you his Holy Spirit to guide you unto all truth to direct you in that path to which he hath led you to enable you to be faithful unto death. May He impart unto you the meekness and heavenly-mindedness of a MARTYN, the zeal and faithfulness of a BRAINARD, the wisdom and fortitude of a SWARTZ, and the diligence and extensive usefulness of the lamented CAREY. May you experience the truth of that blessed promise" There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren for the kingdom of God's sake, who shall not receive an hundred-fold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.” And when your toils are ended, may you be accepted in the beloved, and receive that joyful sentence, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” May you shine as a star in the firmament for ever and ever, having turned many unto righteousness.
The following unfinished reply was written very hastily by Mr. Leslie, on the eve of sailing
BELFAST, March 16th, 1835. MY DEAR YOUNG FRIENDS,
I HAVE received your affectionate address with the accompanying token of your regard, for which you will accept my warmest thanks. At such a time and from you they are peculiarly grateful and encouraging to me; bearing, as I believe they do, not only a decided testimony of your sympathy with me in the arduous work in which I am about to be engaged, but also of your interest in the cause of
Missions to the heathen. If there is any spirit which more than all others should animate the christian, it is that which breathes in your address, and which, I trust, conveys a true view of your character as a body. The conviction that such is the fact, tends very much to encourage the hope that I may not be long left the only Missionary from the Synod of Ulster. The position I now occupy in this respect, is to me most painful. I feel a weight of responsibility which I cannot describe, and which the solitariness of my situation necessarily creates. Believe me, therefore, nothing could afford me greater pleasure than the prospect of some of you joining the ranks of that little band who are fighting the battles of the Lord among the heathen. That there are privations connected with such a warfare Missionary, and that of a faithful Minister at home, difter very little in this respect. He who associates ease and the enjoyment of every personal comfort with the ministerial life at home, must either be very ignorant or irreligious. I do not suspect any of you of falling into such a mistake. When, therefore, you refer to the sacrifices I am called to make, I interpret your words as an expression of what you think ought to be the sacrifices that every minister of Christ should make if called on by his masters and I trust that their existence would interpose no barrier to any of you in going forth to the help of the Lord against the mighty.
You will excuse me, then, of laying aside the style of compliment which the world is accustomed to employ, and permit me as an elder brother to beseech you that ye may not receive the grace of God in vain. You must be aware that the standard of religious attainment among,our people generally, is much too low, and benefactor who contributes most to its elevation. Now there are two modes I would particularly point out as available by you for promoting this end. Either devote yourselves as Missionaries to the service of God among the heathen, or stand forth fearlessly and consistently as the advocates of Missions at home. By directing the attention of professing christians steadily and zealously to such an object, you take the most effectual means of overcoming that natural selfishness of the human heart, which circumscribes its bounty to its own immediate circle. And rest assured, the more extensive the sphere of christian sympathy, the more does christian principle grow in the heart. As to the first of these plans, I would ask you is it too much to expect that from your number I may live to see many engaged personally in this glorious work. You say, and truly, that it has long been a blot on the escutcheon of the Synod of Ulster, that her sons have lingered at home while the heathen were perishing for lack of knowledge. Come, then, to the missionary field, and thus blot out that stain which is deep on the character of a professedly christian people, and believe me you will thus contribute more, by your example, to keep alive a Missionary spirit among the members of the church at home, than you could do by any means while remaining at home. Remember the work of evangelizing the heathen will go on whether you join in it or not It is your privilege, there. fore, to have an opportunity of becoming fellow-workers with God in bringing about a consummation, the remote prospect of which awoke the prophets of old to the loudest strains of rapture. The present are awakening times--may the Lord arouse many of you to the sense of your duty, and make you willing to say with his servants,
“Lord, here we are, send us.” Of most of you, the probability is, that you shall be employed at home, and of you I would hope that whenever and wherever you are, the cause of Missions will find in you zealous and devoted advocates. Let not your advocacy, however, be the cold, . formal, and didactic information—whatever you do in this matter, do it heartily; and rest assured you will never find the people under your care indifferent to your appeals. If you undertake the charge of a congregation where there seems. so little life that you fear to ask their assistance in the cause of Missions, you may be certain that all your fears will be realized. But if with a determination to know fully, and to preach nothing but Jesus Christ, and him crucified, you combine what should always accompany such a resolution, the demand that they who have received benefit from the word of life should assist in imparting it to others, you will not be disappointed every disciple of Christ will join you, and even those who are strangers to him will acknowledge the justice of the principle on which you act, and respect you as consistent.
Mr. Leslie had written thus far, when he was called to take his departure from our shores.
MISSIONARY TO JAMAICA,
goes with the
“ MR. LESLIE has broken new ground, being the first Missionary to the Heathen from the Synod of Ulster. He departs from among us with a pure and elevated character-he
and sympathies of the church- and the confident expectation is that, under the blessing of God, his services will be faithful, persevering, and successful.”-Orthodor Presbyterian.
ABOUSE thee, our Zion ! be girt in thy strength,
Our country hath Broken the fetter and chain,
In the strength of the Lord by the power of his might
And now, when a time of refreshing is come,
Belfast, 16th Marck, 1835. ilin
As a tuken of the Christian feeling with which Mr. and Mrs. Leslie were regarded, a number of her sisters in Christ, in Belfast, presented the latter with a very beautiful Copy of the Bible, and Bridges' Exposition
In another work also presented to Mrs. Leslie bý a Christian friend, the following lines were inserted
of the 119th Psalmer an