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advancing as a deluge, black with agonies, joys, and alternations, he states destruction, resistless in might, uproot. the Lord was pleased, in April 1745, to ing our most cherished hopes, engulf- open the eyes of his spirit, and enable ing our most precious creed, and burying him by absolute wakeful vision to com. our highest life in mindless desolation. municate with the spiritual world, that The floodgates of infidelity are open, he might give to mankind sure and cerand Atheism overwhelming is upon us.

tain information of its scenes, its laws, Can this desolating torrent of falsehood and its inhabitants." be driven back by relinquishing, the vantage-ground of faith in the written THE STATE

RELIGION Word of God? We need, not to lower AUSTRIA.— The Christian World of the standard of Christianity, but to December 20th publishes a letter from enter more deeply into its true teaching. a correspondent in Vienna, describing

the sufferings endured by a number of SWEDENBORG: THE MAN OF SCIENCE, Christians for conscience sake in one of THE PHILOSOPHER, THE THEOLOGIAN. the leading provinces of the Austrian An interesting and instructive weekly Empire. The facts of the case cannot and monthly periodical, entitled Social be better stated, says the writer, than Notes, edited by Mr. S. C. Hall, has by a few quotations from a petition admitted a notice of Swedenborg under drawn up and forwarded to the Minister the above title. The writer is Dr. of Public Worship and Instruction at Bayley, and the notice appears in the Vienna in June 1878. From these weekly numbers for January 4th and quotations we give the following 18th. In the space at the editor's extracts :disposal a lengthened notice would have By God's providence we came into been impossible. All that could be possession a short time since of the attempted was a brief sketch of the Bible, and found in it a peace and rest author's life, writings, and general of soul which the Roman Catholic opinions. This is done in a frank and Church had never been able to give us. pleasant statement. There is no con- We could not without hypocrisy remain cealment, and no attempted vindication any longer members of this Church, and of any portion of the life and experience accordingly determined to withdraw. of Swedenborg. Dr. Bayley treats the We could not, however, enter the com tales respecting Swedenborg's insanity, munion of any other Church recognised as we think all intelligent persons ought by the State, since we perceived that in to treat them, as "totally unworthy all, in spite of greater or less purity of of attention.” Although no external doctrine, the forms of Church governchange,” he writes, was remarked in ment were unscriptural. the conduct of Swedenborg in the year “ In giving notice to the authorities 1743, a great internal change was taking of our withdrawal from the Roman place. He had, as we now know from Catholic Church, we were obliged to ħis Spiritual Diaries, great self-explo- admit that, according to existing laws, rations, deep humiliations before the we were without a Confession of Faith; Lord, impressions of sinfulness and but that we are by no means irreligious heart-searching, and afterwards com- the following facts sufficiently prove : forts full of peace and consolation. His Formerly we used to spend trials and agitations were continued leisure, and more especially our Sunsometimes during the night, inducing days, in public-houses, in drinkingstrange dreams and vivid impressions not seldom in drunkenness—in gam. of the nearness of the eternal world. bling, dancing, and godless, immoral, . We know that suchlike states of spiri. and seditious talk. Since we have tual experience have been detailed learned to know the Gospel all is changed, in the mental history of sincere Chris- and we now take delight in faithfully tians, both in ancient and in modern fulfilling our duties towards God, the times, especially in the case of eminent Government, and all men. Moreover, servants of God, as with Augustine, we delight now to spend our leisure Luther, Colonel Gardiner, Wesley, and time on Sunday and other days in the multitudes of others; but with this common study of God's Word. On addition in the case of Swedenborg, Sunday, ,-1878, while the family of that after TWO YEARS of these mental A. H., in S- were holding morning


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family worship, at which none but the stations, steamers, etc., by which the family and two lodgers were present, pleasure of the public can be disturbed, the police appeared, drove us all out of or the Government endangered,' and fixes the room, and bade the household to the maximum penalty ať 2006., or fourget to work, telling them that if they teen days' imprisonment. It is scarcely wanted to pray they must go elsewhere. necessary to point out how such a When the owner of the house com- measure, obviously framed to hinder plained to the authorities of this treat. political disturbances, found a sufficient ment, explaining, at the same time, raison d'être in the condition of these that these were not · Versammlungen Italian provinces under Austrian sway. (meetings in the technical legal sense), This law does not apply to the whole of he was told that the police were acting the Austrian Empire, and even if it did, under the orders of the district magis- its elasticity of interpretation must, trate. From this time four policemen indeed, be unlimited, if the little private came, usually both in the morning and gatherings of these Christians for family afternoon of Sunday, and if they tind us worship be supposed to disturb the together, even whether we are holding pleasure of the public, or endanger the family prayer or not, they drive us out security of the Government.' The of the house, telling us that they have petition from which I have quoted has orders to remain in the room till we not yet been answered, and, to judge have separated." These policemen, they from experience in similar cases, it is further state, “ search our houses, likely to remain unanswered for months, our rooms, our closets, every Sunday, if not years, to come. Meanwhile our as if we were suspicious characters, fellow-Christians are subject to constant patrol our gardens the whole forenoon, and intolerable annoyance, and are and allow no one to enter the house." always liable to fines and imprisonment,

No remedy could be obtained for and this in an empire which, in Bosnia, these cruel persecutions. The sufferers proclaims religious liberty to all its describe themselves as simple un- subjects.” learned people, who were obliged to ask friends to draw up in their name REV. T. MACKERETH, F.R.A.S. -The this petition. In answer to their appeal friends of this esteemed minister deterto the city authorities they were told mined that he should not quit his scene

that the privilege of family worship of labour in the Salford day-schools is permitted to members of a Confession without a testimonial of their esteem not recognised by the State on certain and appreciation of his labours. A conditions.” To secure, therefore, the meeting was therefore held in the privileges they desired, they declared schoolroom, Irwell Street, Salford, on themselves “old Evangelicals.” “On the 17th of December. Tea was promaking this declaration,” they say, we vided, and a meeting held afterwards, were informed, both by the district and which was presided over by Rev. W. city authorities, that the ‘Alt Evan- Westall, who opened the proceedings in gelisch' Confession was not recognised an appropriate address. The testimonial by the State ; and yet the same author- consisted of an illuminated address, ities, only a few weeks before, informed beautifully framed, and a purse of gold. us that the law expressly refers to In making the presentation Mr. Benson members of a 'Confession not recog- said that the Committee of the Salford nised by the State.' They have since day-schools had from the first the suffered fine and imprisonment for their greatest confidence in the manner in faith and their practice of family wor- which the schools were conducted by ship. The correspondent in concluding Mr. Mackereth, and for many years the this painful narrative says : “The law management was left almost entirely in avowed accordance with which these in his hands, and the results had showed Christians have been fined and im- that their confidence was not misplaced. prisoned bears the date 1854, and was Mr. Mackereth said that a good deal enacted solely for the Lombardo-Vene- had been said by the various speakers tian provinces, which have now ceased about the success of the school. Outto belong to Austria. It forbids all siders generally thought that this success meetings and discussions in theatres, was due to the fact that children of a assembly-rooms, coffee-houses, railway superior class had for a long time


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attended the schools. This to a certain script, then proceeded with his address. extent was true, but from his long He said, as before, that he did not come experience he could testify that it was there to attack, or speak about persons, neither the texture of the jacket nor the but about principles, and as a brother who pecuniary character of the home of the had himself had doubts, endeavouring boy that aided in his school success. to rescue those willing to be rescued The great body of his pupils was and from doubts upon the subjects he had always had been children of the poor brought before them. The subject of labouring class, and the greatest his lecture that evening was 'Scepti. successes of his school had been achieved cism and God.' He mentioned on a by the poorest of his pupils. The plans previous occasion the necessary difficulty of instruction in the school well worked there must be in any thought about out had wrought the success of the God. The very endeavour of the mind school, and wherever these plans had to encounter this great conception had been so worked success had been the in itself a tendency, as it were, to overresult. Wigan, Oldham, and Middleton whelm them; the mind could not reach were proof of this, for the masters of up to the vastness of it. Had they, these schools had been reared from therefore, no conception of God ? He childhood in our school. He was thought they had, as He should strive thankful to them for this handsome and to show. But if any one for one moment beautiful recognition of his humble thought that because he (the lecturer) services. These things for his services had granted the difficulty in the concepwere the farthest thought in his head. tion of God, he had conceded anything He hoped, if he understood himself at like insuperableness in this difficulty, all, that he worked from a pure and he thought such a one would possibly earnest love of education. It never was find himself very much mistaken. He a thought with him, What can a child believed that the person who was best pay? but, What can he do? This he must able to speak of ultimate things, and of learn to do even if the child could not the highest things, was he who felt them pay a penny for it. He had always had most. It was impossible for any man a good committee who had always paid to think about God and not in some him well. Therefore this present was measure to realize the vastness of the no make-up for wages that should have problem ; inherent difficulties been paid, but he doubted not that it in the very nature of the case. He was a real and an affectionate souvenir, would quote to them the words of Mr. and as such he accepted it with deep W. R. Greg, “The difficulty of congratitude, and with all his heart. ceiving the eternal pre-existence of a

personal Creator I perceive to be imBATH.—The Rev. T. Child has re. mense ; the difficulty of conceiving the cently given a course of three lectures, origin and evolution of the actual on Scepticism and Belief, in the Guild universe, independently of such personal hall of that city. The subjects discussed Creator, I should characterize as insuperwere, Scepticism and the Popular able.' And that, he (the rev. speaker) Theology,”

," "Scepticism and the Bible,” thought, was precisely how the case and “Scepticism and God.” The lectures stands ; it might be difficult to conceive were distinguished by marked ability, of God, but it was simply insuperable and excited considerable interest. Mr. to think of this world as it is without Isaac Pitman, who presided, introduced some agent, some intelligent pre-existent the lecturer and the several subjects Mind which brought it to what it is.” with appropriate remarks, lengthened In treating his subject Mr. Child took reports appeared in the local papers, and both sides of the question. The side of Mr. Pitman has since published these the sceptic was given in the words of reports in tract form at the small charge those whose names and writings are at of 3d. per dozen. The spirit in which the present most prominently before the lectures were conceived, and which was public. “The first point,” said the well sustained in their delivery, appears lecturer, " that occurred to him was the in the opening of the third lecture, from denial by the sceptic of any intuition in which we give the following extracts: him of a God or of any conception in “The rev. lecturer, who, as is his him of such a Being. Let them look at custom, spoke without the use of manu- the point, and he would again read them


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a sentence showing how the matter arguments upon the one side or the stands ; he was reading from The Free- other. As Wordsworth says, "The wish Thinkers' Text-Book : The atheist is father to the thought,' and lest any says, 'I know not what you mean by sceptic should think he (the lecturer) God; I am without idea of God; the dealt unfairly with him by saying that word “God” is to me a sound conveying his (the sceptic's) wish was that there no clear or distinct affirmation. I do should be no God, he would speak on not deny God, because I cannot deny the other side, and be honest and say that of which I have no conception, and that he as a theist had a decided wish the conception of which, by its affirmer, that there should be a God, and his is so imperfect that he is unable to define thought about God precisely came out it to me.' Here, then, was the sceptical of his wish, and, whether he knew it or position : he not only says he has no not, the sceptic's thought that there intuition of God, but no conception of was none, precisely came out of his wish God. First of all, in regard to an also. Our thought must be the product intuition of God, let him ask whether it of our wish. Let atheists take this to be quite true that a man—even a sceptic heart.”. With equal clearness and point -could divest himself of such intuition ? Mr. Child discusses a number of imporBy 'intuition' was meant ‘an hereditary tant particulars connected with his aptitude of the mind,' and whatever general subject, sustaining his argument direction it took this definition would fol. by the admissions of those who were low it. They might define intuition, there- not contending for the great truth he fore, to be, as he had said, 'the hereditary was seeking to establish. The lectures aptitude of the mind.' Now sometimes were well suited to the requirements of it happened that a man inadvertently the times, and could not fail to leave a spoke out from this intuition without salutary impression on the ninds of knowing he was doing so; in the force and those who heard them. hurry of

his argument he would bring out something which inevitably pointed to DERBY.—The anniversary services a deeper fact than he would acknow. in connection with this place of worship ledge. He thought he had a case in were held on Sunday, December 8th. point. The book he was now going to The Rev. J. Ashby, the resident min. quote from was by Mrs. Besant, and ister, was the preacher on the occasion. was entitled “My Path to Atheism.' There was a good attendance both mornShe writes, 'A command to persecute ing and evening. In the evening the must be either right or wrong: if right, minister chose for his subject - The it is the duty of Christians to obey it, Life-giving Waters which issued from and to raise once more the stakes of under the Threshold of the Sanctuary" Smithfield for heretics and unbelievers ; (Ezek. xlvii. 1). In his opening reif wrong, it can never have come from marks he observed that God's revelaGod at all, and must be blasphemously tion to mankind assumed many forms; attributed to him.' He wanted to now it took the form of history and know low Mrs. Besant knew that. If narrative, then of prophecy and psalm, she knows, thinks, or believes there is and again of dreams and visions, all no God, how does she know what is these methods being necessary to give blasphemy in regard to God? How fulness and completeness to the unfold. can she take upon herself to say, this, ing of Divine truth. The writings of that, or the other thing is blasphemy the Prophet Ezekiel had been supposed when she tells us just before that she by some to be the least interesting and lias no conception of God at all, and instructive of the Old Testament records. knows nothing of the matter? How, But this vision of the holy waters, at then, does the atheist get out of this all events, must be regarded as both difficulty—that he or she is here speak- interesting and instructive. To the ing out of that very instinct or intuition prophet's mind, doubtless, this vision which they in other words deny. The would image the abundant blessing statement that it would be blasphemous which might yet be realized by the to say so and so about God was a judg. faithful Jews who were then in captiv. ment concerning God. They knew very ity. The stream ran from the temple, well that if they wished a thing to be because every Israelite knew that if true or untrue they could soon find faithful to the rites of the temple all


would be well with him. From the collections of the day amounted to temple flowed, like these waters in £10, 16s. 9d. Ezekiel's vision, the stream of com- On Christmas Day service was held mercial prosperity, of agricultural fruit. in the church, which was tastefully fulness, and of domestic, social, and decorated for the occasion. According national wellbeing. But the Divine to a resolution passed by the Committee, teaching involved in this vision was the Christmas tea and social meeting grander

and more universal than this. was held on Thursday evening, DecemIt was for those who “were not Jews ber 26th. The arrangements, decoraaccording to the flesh, but according to tions, etc., were intrusted to the young the spirit, whose praise is not of men, people of the Society, and were of an en. but of God.” The waters issuing from tirely successful character. A capital the holy place denoted that the princi- programme was provided, and it was ples of love and wisdom descended from gone through to the satisfaction of the Lord, who filled the heavens with all present. The Christmas meeting light and glory, and the Church on of 1878 will be one long remembered earth with life and fertility. The vision for its cordiality, genuine good feeling, was further prophetic of the progress of and real enjoyment. Many generous Divine truth among men. The waters friends gave trays for the tea, which, were said to proceed from the house, or with the sums realized at the tables the temple, because this was representa- and the entertainment, amounted to tive of the real dwelling-place of the nearly £11.". The Committee has deterLord, which was the Church, being com- mined to place offertory boxes at the posed of all those who acknowledge the entrance doors of the church, so as to Word, and sought to obey the Lord in afford all the members of the congrega. all things. * The forefront of the tion the opportunity of making weekly house toward the east” signified that contributions for the support of the the true Church looked continually to. Society. ward the Lord, who is “the dayspring,” or the east. The "threshold” of the KEARSLEY. — The members of the door of the house typified the lowest church, in consideration of the prevailmeans provided for the admission of ing distress in Kearsley and the neighmankind into the Lord's Church, even bourhood, arranged to give a free tea to the human nature which Jehovah as- poor children and others in distress on sumed in the world. The Lord Him- Saturday last. During the week nearly self declared that He was the door by 700 free tickets had been distributed. which if any man entered he should be The large room was beautifully decosaved. Thus the waters coming from rated, all the windows being curtained, under the threshold were representative giving the appearance of a huge drawing. of those lowest Divine truths which pro- room. Here 600 sat down to tea, while ceeded from the Lord, such as the com- in the adjoining infants' room about 160 mandments in the letter of the Word, of were accommodated, ladies of the conwhich it was said, “ They are your life.” gregation presiding at the various tables. As these waters caused everything Teachers and Sunday scholars to the to live whithersoever they came,” the number of 50 admirably performed the "living waters, so often spoken of in duty of waiters. The whole of the ar. the Bible, were those truths which rangements reflected the highest credit flowed from the Lord through the Church upon the members of the New Church, into the world, and which preserved who originated and generously carried therein all that was truly living. The into act their charitable feelings. After truth existing in the minds of indivi- the tea a public meeting was held, at duals filled with spiritual life was the which it was estimated that not fewer great healer of the world's afflictions than 1000 people were present. The Rev. and sorrows. By the reception of these P. Ramnage, the minister of the church, truths human society would be elevated occupied the chair. He was supported and quickened, and men would enjoy by the Rev. W. Hewgill, M.A., Rev. “the days of heaven upon the earth.” J. F. Munro, and later in the evening The choir sang the anthem “Glorious the Rev. C. Lowe of Kearsley Moor. is Thy Name” in a most pleasing man- Mrs. Fletcher and Mrs. Grimshaw were ner at the evening service. The also accommodated with seats on the

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