« ZurückWeiter »
fin, is a child of God and an heir of eternal glory; although he should differ from me in certain modes of worship and educated opinions. Yes; each one, and all who, with undivided heart, believe in, and love our Lord Jesus Christ, as his or their God and Saviour, and in consequence keep close to his commandments, and walk in all his ways to his glory and well-pleasing; they are my brethren, and my coþeirs, were I even to meet them in formerly benighted Otaheite ; and, I cannot hide it from you, that rivers of tears of joy ran down my cheeks, when in the public papers, I first read an account of this Missionary work; and that my ever adorable Saviour had united in this labour men of different private sentiments in England; men constrained by love to him to unite, and lay aside sentiments which, although excellent in themselves, yet from the frailty of nature and prejudice, had tended to make the Church of Chrift as a rope of fand. Oh, happy, happy England! what a glorious pattern dost thou prefent to all the Chriftian world! Allow me to tell you, honoured fathers, and beloved brethren, that for the sake of you and other praying friends, Jehovah Sabaoth will probably go forth in his might, and blefs the arms of your country against those of your enemies whole aim is to extirpate the glory of the name of Christ upon earth.
Oh! that your Miffionaries may in all things answer your hopes, your confidence in them, and the magnificent object for which they are sent forth ! May neither temporal wants, nor temporal cares; neither diftreffes, nor successes, impede or choak the work of the Spirit in their souls ! May neither the fear of man nor the praise of man, nor any kind of private ends make their way into their heart ! May their souls be emptied of every desire and every senfation which has mot Jesus, love to him, and holiness, for its ultimate object! May they burn to bring fouls speedily into the kingdom of our Lord! May no earthly notive whatever interfere to weaken their zeal for the cause in which they have einbarked! Then thall blessings follow them in the r going out and coming in, and although they may now be fowing the feed of life in tears, they shall notwithstanding “ return with joy, bringing their shearers with them.” That joy you will thortly share with them, and both you and they, and I also in my poor corner, be joined in fpirit to give honour, praise, and glory to Sion's King.
May the Lord Jesus give a blessing on your and their labows! May, his love conftrain them! the efficacy of his blood enliven them! his Spirit guide them! his peace cause love and peace to dwell among them, and sway all their in tentions ! his faithfulness implant, root, and fix in them a true Apoftolic fpirit! Then, according to his precious pro. mise, their labour in the Lord shall not be in vain.
May the grace, peace, and blessing of our Lord Jesus Chrift remain for ever with the whole Miffionary Society! So prays the most insignificant and leaft worthy of all its witnesses LAURENCE CHRISTOPHER PETZIUS,
CURATE. Storeberg, near Lidkoping, in Sweden,
the 12th December, 1798. I requeft my sincereft respects to my countryman, the Rev. Mr. Niffer, Minister of the Swedish Congregation in London.
If you defire it, shall endeavour to collect as much money as in this poor neighbourhood can be had : But, alas ! I cannot flatier you that it will be much, for all my endeavours have not yet produced Twenty Pounds, to let on foot a small school for instructing poor people's children, and my own revenue is very little more than Ten Pounds per annum.
ON THE PROPHECY OF THE SEVEN VIALS.
To the Editor. Sir. (F the following attempt to illustrate the Prophecy in the
16th chapter of Revelation relating to the Vials, is thought worthy of a place in your useful publication, it is at your service. If it did not contain a view of this subject, in some material respects, different from that in which it has been represented by those writers whose sentiments I have had the opportunity of consulting, I should not prefume to offer it to the attention of your readers ; and I now do it with considerable diffidence, not only on account of the peculiar difficulty with which these subjects are attended, but, also, becaufe my pursuits in life do not allow me sufficient leisure to enter deeply into these enquiries, I conceive then, with others, that the first tive Vials relate to the divine judgments which were to be inflicted principally on the states connected with the Papacy, that they began to be poured out about the æra of the French revolution,
and that they respectively refer to different orders of fociety, beginning with the interior, ascending by a regular gradation through the interniediate classes and terminating in the highest. It is this latter idea which I am defirous of fuggesting, as I am not apprized that it has before been submitted to consideration. I think also, although there is a succession with respeết to their commencement, yet that they are partially contemporancous, and that their conteots will not be fully exhausted until the conclusion of the fixth and seventh Vials; which latter appear to have also some relation to the States connected with Rome; but which taking a more extensive range, refer principally to a series of warfare and revolution, by which the political condition of many other nations will undergo a great alteration, preparatory to the introduction of an effential inoral change, which, it appears probable, from other parts of the sacred writings, will eventually be conne&ed with the enlargement of the kingdom of our Saviour in the world.
The first Vial is poured out upon the earth. As the terms. which are used in the propbetical writings are admitted to be, in general, enigmatical, and are frequently borrowed from the system of the universe; so that governments, potentates and the higher classes of society are represented by the Heavens, the Sun, and other eminent parts of the creation, it follow's that the Earth in its prophetical fignification may, very probably, relate to the lower orders of the people. The effect of this Vial is a grievous and malignant ulcer upon the men who had the mark of the beast. This does not convey any idea of warfare or destruction; but receives a confiderable illustration, if, dismiffing the literal meaning of the words, we consider that it is the political body to which the prophecy refers, and which it particularly delineates as in a disordered and ulcerated state. The diseases of the political body are insubordination, popular commotions, and infurrections; and to what an extent these have prevailed among the inferior ranks of society, in those countries which are connected with the Papacy, as well as those new principles relating to government in its civil and ecclesiastical branches, from which they have sprang, are hiftorical facts with which every one is conversant. I conceive, therefore, that the dissemination of these principles among the multitude, and their effects in producing the political difturbances which fo remarkably diftinguished the earlier periods of the French revolution, and which were VOL. VII.
the source of the subsequent events, are striking illustrations of the prophetical terms respecting the 1st Vial.
The 2d Vial was poured upon the sea, which became as the blood of a dead man, &c. The sea is the medium of external commerce, and considered as a prophetical term, has a suitable and perspicuous relation to the commercial order. It is this class of society which, I presume, is affected by the contents of this vial. The blood of a dead man, which is ftagnant and without circulation, is a juft illustration of the state of foreign commerce in moft of those countries connected with the church of Rome, which is fuppressed and annihilated in an unprecedented manner; and the feeble and critical state of those nations, in that communion, in which some degree of commerce is still carried on, prepares the mind to expect that this prediction will in due time, receive a still more comprehensive and complete fulfilment.
The 3d Vial was poured upon the rivers and fountains of water. These are the sources of fertility in nature, and furnish, therefore, a fit emblem of the Ecclefiaftical Orders, whose appropriate duty it is to be the sources of fruitfulness in the moral world. The application of this vial to this order of society appears to me decisive, from the celebration which the Angel of the waters offers to God, on account of the equity of his retributions, in giving them blood to drink, because of the persecuting spirit by which they have, in different ages, shed the blood of so many faints and prophets. It receives its verification in the suppression of their order in several countries, in the general diminution of their influence, and, particularly, in the immense deftruction which has been made of the individuals connected with the priesthood since the commencement of the French revolution.
The 4th Vial, which is poured on the sun, ascends to a still higher class of society, and relates to Monarchy, of which the sun is the acknowledged fymbol. Power was given to it to scorch men by fire, and this effect is illuftrated by the great destruction of armies, which have been called forth to war with the exercise of regal authority. But as the Sun is itself the subject on which the vial terminates, it has received, in part, its accomplishment in the fuppression of Monarchy, not in France only, but in other countries connected with the Romish Church. The 5th Vial completes the climax, and falls upon the
feat or throne of the beast; and has, I conceive, been lately
influence of this vial upon the state of the world is of tre-