Imatges de pÓgina

worship of the devil in any of their societies. In one of his journeys, on meeting with one of those wretches, he said to him, “ Whether do you think God, or Chepian, (i. e. the devil,) to be the author of all good?” The conjuror answered, God. Upon this Mr. E. added, with a stern countenance, Why do you pray to Chepian then ?" and the poor unhappy man was not able to stand or speak before him ; but at last made promises of reformation.

One of Mr. Elliot's remarkable cares for the poor illiterate Indians, was to bring them into the use of schools and books. He quickly procured the use of schools for them; wherein they profited so much, that not only many of them were brought to read and write, but also several of them received a liberal education at a college in New England. The policy of papists, which keeps their people from the use of the Scriptures, appeared to him hateful and hellish. He was the very opposite of a Franciscan, who, writing into Europe, gloried much how many thousands of Indians he had converted; but added, that he desired his friend would send him a book called the Bible ; for he had heard of there being such a book in Europe, which might be of some use to him. Mr. Elliot was thoroughly acquainted with the Bible ; and he knew that it would be more than of some use to the Indians, as well as to himself: he therefore, with vast labour, translated it into the Indian language. His version of the Bible was the first that ever was printed in America. The Bible being jastly made the leading book, a little Indian library was quickly formed; for to Primers, and Grammars, and some other elementary works, were soon added T'he practice of Piety, and Baxter's Call to the Unconverted, together with several other compositions, all in the Indian tongue.

The Indians, unto whom the gospel preached by Mr. E. had been made the power of God unto salvation, were quickly distinguished by the name of praying Indians, and they as quickly were desirous of a more decent way of living, and of more fixed habitations. Among the towns into which they settled, that of Natick is the most famous. It was there that, in the year 1651, those that had before lived like the wild beasts in the wilderness, compacted themselves into a town; and first applied themselves to the forming of their civil government. Although the general court studied to keep these Indians sensible of their being subject to the English Empire, yet they had allowed them their smaller

courts, wherein they might decide on their own smaller cases and concerns, and might have their town orders peculiar to thenselves. Mr. E. on a solemn fast, made a public vow, That seeing these Indians not possessed of any forms of government, he would instruct them in such a form of government as we had written in the word of God, that so they might be a people in all things ruled by the Lord. Accordingly he expounded unto them the xviiith chap. of Exodus ; and then they chose rulers of hundreds, of fifties, of tens: and afterwards unanimously entered into this covenant :“ We are the sons of Adam ; we and our forefathers have long been lost in our sins ; but now the mercy of the Lord beginneth to find us out again ; therefore, the grace of Christ helping us, we do give ourselves and our children to be his people. He shall rule us in all our affairs : the Lord is our Judge; the Lord is our Lawgiver ; the Lord is our King; he will save us; and the wisdom which God has taught us in this Book shall guide us.' Oh Jehovah! teach us wisdom ; send thy Spirit into our hearts ; take us to be thy people, and let us take thee to be our God."

The little towns of these Indians being pitched upon this foundation, they utterly abandoned polygamy, which had formerly been common among them. They made severe laws against fornication, drunkenness, Sabbath-breaking and other immoralities, which they began to lament, after their settlement into church order. On their being strictly and carefully examined by a number of pious ministers, both with respect to their knowledge and piety; at length, with the consent of the neighbouring churches and ministers, they formally entered into church fellowship; and Mr. Elliot conceived himself sufficiently authorized to become their pastor; and he accordingly administered the sacrament of baptism, and that of the Lord's supper,

among them.

Notwithstanding the eminent piety possessed by Mr. Elliot, from the beginning of his christian course, it was obssrved by his friends, that as he drew near the confines of the eternal world, he discovered an increase of heavenly-mindedness. It is too usual with old men, that when they are past work, they are least sensible of their incapacities. This was not the case with Mr. Elliot; for he was the first to proclaim his inability, through age and infirmity, to fill the pastoral office at Roxbury. After he had been favoured with an assistant, whom he highly esteem

cd and cordially loved, he expressed much satisfaction ; and fu a ycar or two before his removal to glory, he could scarcely be persuaded to perform any public service. To the importunities of those who wished him to preach, he was wont to say, thal “ it would be a wrong to the souls of the people, for him to do any thing among them, when they were supplied so much to their advantage otherwise.” It is thought that the last sermon be ever preached was on a public fast; at the conclusion of which, though allowed by all to be an excellent discourse, he begged his hearers to pardon the poorness, and meanness, and brokenness of his meditations; but added, My dear brother here will, byand-bye, mend all.

But although he thus dismissed himself from his public labours, as one so near the age of ninety well might; yet he would not give over his endeavours to do good to all, in a more private sphere. He had always been an enemy to idleness; and as he saw his life approaching to its close, the value of every moment stood higher in his estimation. He now imagined that he could do nothing to any purpose in the service of God; and sometimes he would say, “I wonder for what the Lord Jesus Christ lets me live; he knows that I can do nothing for him!” And yet he could not forbear endeavouring to do something for his Divine Master ; wherefore, thought he, What shall I do? He then conceived that, though the English could not be benefited by any gifts which he now fancied himself to have only the ruins, yet who can tell but the Negroes might! He had long lamented, with a bleeding heart, that the English took so little care of the immortal souls of their Negrocs; and he looked upon it as a prodigy, that any calling themselves Christians, should manifest such depravity, as to deprive their slaves of religious instruction. Big with hopes of being usesul as a Catechist of Negroes, he requested the English, within two or three miles of him, to send their Negroes to him, once a week, that he might instruct them to the utmost of his power; but he did not live to make much progress in this undertaking.

While approaching the end of his pilgrimage, he often con. versed on the subject of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.The thoughts of his glorious appearance filled him with unspeak

able joy

Al last, this saint of God, and eminent minister of Christ, fell into languishments, attended with a fever, which, in a few days.

brought him into the pangs of death. On Mr. Walter, his assistant, coming in, he said to him, “ Brother thou art welcome to my soul. Pray retire to my study for me, and give me leave to be gone!" Speaking, in his last illness, of the work of God among the Indians, he said, “There is a cloud, a dark cloud, upon the work of the Gospel among the poor Indians. The Lord revive and prosper that work, and grant that it may

live when I am dead. It is a work which I have been doing much and long about. But what was the word I spoke last? I recall the word, my doings :' alas! they have been poor, and small, and lean doings, and I'll be the man that shall throw the first stone at them."

It has been observed, that they who have spoken many considerable things in their life, usually speak few at their deaths. This was not the case with Mr. Elliot, who after saying much and to good purpose, for God, during the course of a long life, uttered some things little short of oracles on his death-bed. It is to be lamented, that few of these have been recorded. Suffice it to say, that feeling his happy soul about to take its flight for glory, he cried out, Welcome joy! and breathed his last, in saying to those who stood by him, pray, pray, pray!

The confessedly imperfect sketch which we have given of Mr. Elliot's life, will convince every pious and intelligent reader, that he was an extraordinary man.

He possessed, in an eminent degree, every grace and qualification which can adorn the ministerial character. His labours among the Indians, together with his translating the whole of the Scriptures into their language, intitle him to fill a conspicuous place in the first rank of Christian Missionaries. He was what every minister of Christ ought to be, a man full of faith and the Holy Ghost. He consecrated all his powers to God; and God honoured him by affording many scals to his ministry. Difficulties which would appal others to despondency, he surmounted with comparative

for he was strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

The hardships which he cheerfully underwent, in the pursuit of his favourite object, viz. the conversion of the Indians, are but partially known. “ I have not (said he, in a letter to a friend) heen dry either night or day, from the third day of the week unto the sixth, but so travelled, and at night pulled off my boots, wrung my stockings, and on with them again : and so I con

case ;

tinue. But God steps in and helps. I have considered the word of God in 2 Tim. ii. 3, “Endure hardness, as a good soldier of Christ." " By the constant exercise of a strong faith, he saw Him that is invisible : and being in possession of perfect love, and the full assurance of hope, he spoke of his approaching death not only without the least perturbation, but with the utmost composure and delight. For many months before his departure, he often, with the sober joy of a man full of God, told his friends, “ That he was shortly going to heaven; and that he would carry a deal of good news thither with him :—that he would carry tidings to the old founders of New England, who were now in glory, that church work was still carried on there; that the number of churches was continually increasing : and that the churches were still kept together as big as they were, by the daily additions of those that shall be saved."

It is a pleasing, and, by no means an unscriptural opinion, that the spirits of just men made perfect, in common with the holy angels, admire the manifold wisdom of God in the Church Militant. If this be the case, which is more than probable, how will the glorified spirits of Elliot, Swartz, Brainerd, and other faithful Missionaries triumph, on hearing an account of the extraordinary Missionary exertions and Bible Associations of the present age! What matter of holy triumph will it afford to the glorified spirit of Eliot to be informed, that the holy Scriptures, which he prized so highly, are about to be sent, in faithful versions into every nation under heaven?



Romans iv.

As it is of the first importance for every man to understand the ground on which sinful and guilty creatures are justified before God, it is hoped that the following remarks will be found both interesting and useful. 1. The apostle in this chapter wholly excludes works from that economy in which man is ac. quitted and justified before God. His argument may be con

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