Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

Y у

immediately obeyed Mr. Phillips' advice; and the Court granted the license on the condition, that if the Eagle Tavern were again opened on the Sabbath, excepting as an ordinary public-house, the license should be taken away altogether. The Court was very explicit on the point, distinctly stating, that every part recently opened for the amusement of the people, such as the saloon, ballroom, and similar places, must be closed, and that no money as entrance-money could be allowed to be taken on the Sabbath evening. It was afterwards agreed, on the suggestion of Mr. Pownall, that the condition in substance should be endorsed upon the back of the license in the handwriting of the Chairman, The following is a copy of the endorsement* as given by the “Morning Post,” of October 22:

“ Upon the granting this license (the Eagle Tavern), the Court expressed a strong opinion on the impropriety of keeping open on Sunday the saloon and other parts of the premises used for public amusements, and the grantee of the license undertook that, if the license were renewed, those practices should be discontinued, and the house opened on Sunday as a common tavern only. The Court are not to be considered by this memorandum as having pronounced any opinion as to the lawfulness of the representation of theatrical exhibitions upon week-days in public-houses possessing music licenses, and still less as having given any such exhibitions their sanction. This question was not, on the present occasion, entered into by the Court.”

The principle having thus been laid down, it was unanimously agreed that it should be made universally applicable; and hence the whole of these places that have been such nuisances in the metropolis will in future be closed, except as common publichouses.

Among the places included in this regulation are, the Royal Standard Hotel, Vauxhall-bridge, Pimlico; the York and Albany Tavern and Tea-gardens, in Park-street, Regent's-park; the Black Lion Tea-gardens, Bayswater; the Eagle Tavern, City-road; White Conduit House; the Crown Tavern and Tea-gardens, Bayswater; the Dolphin Tavern, in Mare-street; the Yorkshire Stingo; the Bedford Arms Tavern and Tea-gardens, Camdentown; the Royal Standard, Shepherd and Shepherdess-walk, City

* An attempt was made by Mr. Rouse and others, (through Mr. David Wires the solicitor, and Mr. Bodkin, the barrister,) on Thursday last, Oct. 28, at the county meeting of magistrates, to get an "explanation” from the magistrates of the meaning of the “ endorsement,” just as if it were not as explicit as language can make it; but the real object was to get the tea-gardens opened again; and if this were granted, all the iniquity recently practised would be repeated, not only on some of the same, but also on fresh victims. Every benevolent man, every man wishing well to society, and especially every Christian, will be glad to hear the application was unsuccessful. Mr. Sergeant Adams, the Chairman, said, It was not in his power, nor was it in the power of the Court, to give any explanation of it, until the same Court met again, which would not be until next October.

road; Copenhagen House ; the New Globe Tavern, Mile Endroad; Bagnigge Wells Tavern and Tea-gardens, and many others. The result of the whole is, that out of seventy-four applications for the renewal of licenses, one was refused, four declined pressing their application, and the whole were subjected to the regulation as to the Sabbath, which we have above stated. Every one of the thirteen new applications was refused.

In reviewing the interference of the Mission, the Committee have abundant cause for gratitude; and thousands will rejoice at the success which has accompanied their efforts. We know, on the best authority, that several of the magistrates who had formerly favoured these places were surprised by the affecting details furnished to them in the papers of the Mission, and they determined to sanction them no longer. It was also gratifying that not one statement made by the Mission upon the subject was doubted or called in question, and painful and appalling as were the details, neither Mr. Rouse, nor his counsel, nor any one else, attempted to contradict them.

It may also be stated, that to effect this great object for London, the ordinary labours of the Missionaries have not been at all interfered with. The fifty-seven Missionaries now employed by the Mission are steadily pursuing their arduous duties, and are the instruments of conveying the greatest blessings to the poor among whom they labour. The suppression of these Sunday taverns is an extra work, and we have now to add it to the other extra works of the Mission : the supplying of every poor family in London with a copy of the New Testament and Psalter which was found without one; the suppression of Fairlop fair on the Sabbath and its abatement on the other days; the abatement of the evils of Bartholomew fair, which the Lord Mayor elect has promised not to proclaim at all next year; the supply of every visitable family in the metropolis with a tract on intemperance, entitled “ The Way to be Healthy and Happy," amounting to 250,000; the diminution of the licenses granted to penny theatres; the course of Lectures against Socialism; and the course on Spiritual Christianity.

We cannot conclude without specially calling the attention of the clergy, the ministers of all denominations, the Sunday School Union, and the Committees of the National School and of the British and Foreign School Societies, to the brief document from the House of Correction inserted in this article. It is not a statistical document of thirty or fifty years past, but it bears date OCTOBER 21, 1841; and it tells the appalling fact-and it should be republished by every educational Society in the world--that in one only of the gaols of the metropolis of the British empire there were on October 21, 1841, 973 prisoners (exclusive of children), and that 717 of them have “no education at all, or so little as not to deserve the name." WHERE IS THE SCHOOLMASTER ? ABROAD ? Then let him return home, and educate the population

IS HE

of the city, from which he has been sent, both youthful and adult, before he seeks to educate the children and citizens of foreign nations. Again we ask, WHERE IS THE SCHOOLMASTER ?

OUTLINE OF A LECTURE* ON THE DESIRABLENESS, THE POSSIBILITY, AND THE PROBABILITY OF A DIVINE REVE. LATION.

In the preceding lecture we adduced several arguments in proof of the necessity of a Divine revelation, and answered some objections against it: we have now to consider whether or not a revelation be desirable, for many things may be necessary, and yet not desirable.

THE DESIRABLENESS OF A DIVINE REVELATION. It is desirable, 1. That as man is endowed with a capacity of recognising his Creator, he should know somewhat of his perfections and attributes, and the principles of his government of the human race, and he cannot fully know these without a revelation, as shown in the previous lecture.

2. The mental and moral unfitness existing in an immense

* This lecture is one of the following series, now in the course of delivery on the Saturday afternoon in every week, to the Missionaries of the London City Mission

PART I.
Lecture 1. On the Existence of a Supreme Intelligent God.

2. On the limited information in Natural Theology, independent of

a Divine revelation.
3. On Atheism.
4. On Pantheism.
5. On Deism.

PART II.
6. The Necessity of a Divine Revelation.
7. The Desirableness, the Possibility, and the Probability of a Divine

Revelation. 8. The Revelations professedly Divine now extant:-1. The Zendmajority of the human race to deduce any facts and principles from the material universe, especially to be of any practical use or authority, renders a revelation highly desirable.

avesta.—2. The Brahminical Scriptures.—3. The Buddhist

Scriptures,

9. The Koran, The Jewish Scriptures and the Christian Scriptures will form the subjects of many Lectures, as each book will be taken separately, and the external and internal evidences of its genuineness, authenticity, and inspiration will be adduced and examined ;-the passages usually quoted and objected to by Infidels explained ;- the difficult passages in each book, and those apparently contradicted by others, and such as are apparently contradicted by the discoveries of modern science, will also be fully examined.

As soon as each lecture is finished, the Missionaries have the liberty of offering any remarks, and of asking any questions; and the conversation is usually onged one hour with the view of instructing and of better qualifying them for the more difficult parts of Missionary work. The Saturday afternoon meeting commences at half-past one o'clock, and the devotional exercises the reporting, the lecture, and the conversation, usually occupy the time till halfpast four, or a quarter to five o'clock.

3. In order that we may have definite knowledge as to ourselves, especially whether we consist of one simple substance perishable at death, or of two or more compound substances divisible by death ; and whether or not we live for ever.

4. That there may be a standard of moral and religious truth, by which all men's minds may ultimately be harmonized, and their lives and hopes universally governed.

5. Because no system of morals, and no speculations upon our annihilation or immortality can be authoritative without the testimony of the Divine Creator.

6. That although man will not (from whatever cause) submit to the authority of the Divine lawgiver, yet it is highly desirable there should be a standard of morals and true piety before mankind

in all ages.

7. That at death we may not be surprised by any disclosures of an invisible world, and of which without a revelation we should be ignorant.

8. That if as moral agents we have sinned and incurred any penalties, the knowledge of a Saviour and of the means of deliverance, if there be any provided, is desirable and infinitely important.

9. The writings of the Old and New Testaments, and of all other professedly sacred writings, prove that their different authors, living in different ages and countries, all concurred in the desirableness of a Divine revelation; to which may be added the testimonies of eminent Pagan philosophers, and of other men in all nations under heaven.

Several passages might be quoted, showing that men who had thought much upon themselves desired a revelation. Plato, when speaking of future rewards and punishments, says, “ The truth is, to determine or establish anything certain about these matters in the midst of so many doubts and disputations is the work of God only." He also puts these words into the mouth of Socrates, on the subject of the reformation of manners : “ You may pass the remainder of your days in sleep, or despair of finding out a sufficient expedient for this purpose, if God in his providence do not send you some other instruction."

In Plato's account of the discourse of Socrates on the immortality of the soul, one of the interlocutors, referring to the difficulties of the subject, says, that “we can only select the most plausible of human opinions, and embarking in these, as in a vessel, thus navigate amid the perils of life ; unless, indeed, any one might be enabled to proceed with less liability to failure and danger as in a more secure vehicle by means of some Divine communication."

At the conclusion of the dialogue on prayer, when urging the importance of waiting for further instruction, the questions are asked, “ When shall that time arrive ?” “ And who is he that shall so instruct us ? for most gladly would we behold who that man

“ He it is,” is the answer, “who regardeth thee with tender care; but it seemeth to me that as Homer represents Minerva to have removed from the eyes of Diomede their mortal mist, and thus to have enabled him

may be.”

With piercing glance the varied fields to scan,
And view with clear discernment God and man,'

even so must this instructor remove the darkness from thy soul, that it may be directed to really beneficial objects, and enabled rightly to discern between good and evil, which is beyond its present power.” “O may he," rejoins the disciple, “if he be willing, remove this darkness and every other hinderance: for I am fully persuaded to evade none of his ordinances, whosoever this instructor may be, provided only I may be rendered more virtuous by his influence.” “ Yea, wonderful indeed (replied Socrates) is the loving regard which he beareth towards thee."

THE POSSIBILITY OF A DIVINE REVELATION. 1. The Creator of man, possessing, as he does, infinite wisdom and omnipotence, can endow the mind with any degree of intellectual power that he pleases; and can so influence it, and discover to it things unknown before, that it shall be in possession of truth, and able to make it known to others entirely free from all error. And,

2. Such mind so influenced can be satisfied of the fact of supernatural instruction and inspiration, not only by the effect of truth upon itself, but by accompanying evidences furnished by God, proving his interposition by miraculous agency and works in his name, and other means, according to the circumstances and duties of the person inspired.*

THE PROBABILITY OF A DIVINE REVELATION. 1. Inasmuch as we see a wonderful provision in the body of man for its various uses, and a wonderful adaptation of nature in every part for each other, it is probable that if we are destined for another state of existence, we should have some certain knowledge of it, that we might prepare accordingly.

Assuming the fact, that the Creator is a benevolent being, we argue the probability, 2. Inasmuch as man, through a remarkable capacity for knowledge, and a no less wonderful spirit of inquiry,

* Lord Bolingbroke has admitted, that “an extraordinary action of God upon the human mind, which the word inspiration is now used to denote, is not more inconceivable than the ordinary action of mind on body, or of body on mind." And" that it is impertinent to deny the existence of any phenomenon, merely because we cannot account for it."-Vide Works, vol. ii., p. 468, 4to. edit.

« ForrigeFortsæt »