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ner with which, according to their own account, they frequently treated those who, impelled by a curiosity natural to all human beings, were desirous to see the face of a white man, by violently thrusting them from their persons, even at the time they were enjoying their hospitality, were calculated to irritate and provoke the natives. Instead of conciliating their favor by a kind and courteous conduct, as they manifestly should have done, they often treated their visiters with a roughness of manner, more becoming the vulgarity of a common sailor, than of English gentlemen, who were travelling through the country for the benefit of science and humanity. We allow indeed that the natives were frequently repulsive in their manners, and abrupt and obtrusive in their visits ; but what else could be expected from unpolished barbarians, totally ignorant of the etiquette of fashionable life, who were suddenly roused by the appearance of strangers, differing in the color of their skin, their dress and language from any persons that they had ever seen or perhaps heard of before? A desire to see, to examine closely, a human being so different from ourselves is natural to man, and excites a curiosity not to be easily repressed. Instead therefore of treating the manifestations of this curiosity with haughty contempt, though it might have been attended with some sacrifice of comfort and convenience, it should have been met with kindness, and have been gratified as far as practicable. We recollect hearing of a general of one of our armies during our last war, whose name had become somewhat famous, who was travelling through the country, and, stopping at a public house, the people in the village thronged around to obtain a sight of him. To gratify their curiosity he hoisted the window and exhibited himself to their view. How much more politic as well as kind was this line of conduct than it would have been to repulse them with angry looks and threatening language.
Though there are many highly interesting incidents related in these journals, and the topography of some parts of the country given with apparent accuracy, yet they are too much filled up with individual details and sufferings, conversations with the petty sovereigns, and others whom they visited. These things render them somewhat monotonous and tiresome. But notwithstanding these and other defects which might be pointed out, we can recommend the volumes to our readers as containing valuable information respecting many parts of the interior of Africa, and as affording a picturesque view of the banks of the Niger from the kingdom of Yàoorie to its entrance into the ocean at Cape Formosa in the Gulf of Guinea.
The success of this enterprise will doubtless open a way for British merchants to extend their commercial intercourse into the interior regions of Africa, as the Niger, though in some places rapid in its cur
rent, is navigable by steam boats, at least as far as the kingdom of Boossa, where the rocky channel commences; and as this nation have nobly protested against the slave trade, should they succeed in establishing trading posts along the river, it is to be hoped that they will discourage and finally annihilate this abominable traffic in human flesh and blood. Indeed, an expedition, consisting of a brig of one hundred and seventy tons, and two steamers built expressly for the purpose, under the superintendence of Mr. Lander, has already sailed from Liverpool for a voyage up the Niger.
But a more important and lasting benefit may be expected to result from this expedition. Now that Christendom is on the alert for extending the empire of Jesus Christ by means of Bible and missionary operations, this extensive country offers a promising field for cultivation. From the account which the Landers have given of many of these native tribes, the people in general are docile and teachable, actuated by an eager curiosity to become acquainted with European customs and manners, and already are possessed with no little veneration for white men ; and hence if men of God are sent among them, qualified by their intelligence, by their Christian meekness, zeal, and kindness, to conciliate their favor, and to instruct them in the great principles of Christianity, as well as to exhibit its purity and excellence in their lives, we may anticipate a successful issue of their labors. And why should not men of God be willing to suffer as much to rescue these African idolaters from their thraldom as the men of the world are to extend the empire of knowledge, to acquire human fame, or to enlarge the sphere of commerce? We have seen in the various travellers who have at different times penetrated into Africa with a view to ascertain its topography that they have subjected themselves to all sorts of hardships, to sleepless nights and wearisome days, to great bodily fatigues and privations, and even to death itself. What an example is this for the Christian missionary! Let but suitable means and men be employed for this grand enterprise, and the shores, the hills and valleys of Africa shall again resound with the high praises of God,
[We regret that the following article, which has been furnished by a correspondent, did not come to hand sooner. We trust, however, that it will receive that attention which its merits demand, and produce those practical results which it is intended to effect, and that the grand cause of temperance will be essentially aided in its forward march,
both by the address itself, and this brief but pertinent notice of it. Both heaven and earth are moving forward this mighty engine of reformation. God is speaking from heaven in a voice more alarming to inebriates than thunder, in the sweeping pestilence which is hurling them by thousands to a premature grave, while His servants are echoing His admonitory language by means of temperance operations. ]
Among all the benevolent enterprises by which our age and country are distinguished, there is no one which in my humble view is less understood or less appreciated, than that which is known as the temperance cause.' I have watched its progress from the earliest efforts which have been made in the American nation and in the American Churches, with a solicitude more ardent than that felt on any other subject, and have hailed each period of its acceleration, and each triumph of its principles, with unmingled thanksgiving to the God of providence and grace, whose cause it unquestionably is, and under whose guidance and blessing I believe it is destined to revolutionize, if not evangelize the world.
High indeed has been my complacent gratulation, that I am honored by a connection with a Christian Church, in whose foundation the principles of the temperance reformation’ have been so deeply laid, by the uncompromising and fearless avowal of them, on the part of our illustrious progenitor; a time, too, when a “moral courage' was required, to which modern reformers furnish no parallel. And the name of Wesley—though identified with every thing great and good, as a philo
opher, scholar, Christian, and divine, in my earliest recollectionsreceived an additional consecration, when I found among his writings the clear, forcible, and conclusive testimony against the use, manufacture, and sale of all spirituous liquors, which he ceased not to denounce as a gross immorality, a curse upon humanity, and a disgrace to the Church. Is it not passing strange, that the professed followers of this apostle of temperance, in Europe and America, should have so far forgotten the principles and practice of their founder, that thousands among them should habitually and daily indulge themselves in the use of spirituous liquors, by a latitudinarian interpretation of the ambiguous rule which allows the use of them in cases of necessity ?' And is it not still more strange that thousands more, bearing the name of Wesley, should owe their support and fortunes to the manufacture and sale of ardent spirits, when he had affirmed of all such, and the deep tones of his voice are still echoing in the Churches, They are poisonersgeneral; they murder mankind by wholesale, and drive them to hell like sheep?'
I need not attempt to account for these discordant anomalies in the features and history of Methodism, on any other ground than referring them to the infirmity of our common nature, parallel cases of inconsistency between principles and practice being every where visible, in institutions merely human. It may be sufficient for my purpose to say, that these facts, proclaiming our departure as a people from primitive and original principles on this one topic, have been the subject of frequent and perpetual rebuke and denunciation from the pulpit and the press during every period of our history; and farther it will be acknow
ledged that a large proportion of our ministry and people, both by precept and example, have adhered to the rigid interpretation of Mr. Wesley's rule and practice on this subject, viz. total abstinence from the manufacture, sale, and use of spirituous liquors, except in cases of EXTREME necessity. The existence of these evils in our Church has been suffered, as slavery and kindred evils are suffered ; but never authorized.
While the followers of Wesley alone, with the exception of the society of Friends, have been so long and so zealousiy laboring to establish the principle and practice of total abstinence from the traffic and use of ardent spirits ; deprecating it as an evil of fearful magnitude, and deploring the cruel mischiefs resulting to the cause of humanity from this parent of abominations; it will be recollected, that the whole weight of the authority and example of most other denominations has been, until within a few years, thrown into the other scale ; and hence in publicly denouncing the traffic and use of spirituous liquors, we were not only contending against fearful odds, but when we proclaimed the one and the other to be immoral and anti-christian, we were accused of censoriously unchristianizing our neighbors; and alas for us, we were obliged to admit that many of our own communicants were under the same condemnation. Still
, however, the mantle of Wesley has fallen on very many kindred spirits, and the deep tones of his rebukes have been continually re-echoed in our churches, and not without annual evidences of the gradual purification of our communion from this monstrous evil.
The process of reformation was, however, slow ; for when interest and inclination are so largely implicated, as in the traffic and use of so tempting and so profitable a commodity, it has not been easy for ecclesiastical censures and pulpit rebukes to be heard, amid the noise of multitudes of professing Christians who surround us, and heed not to pursue the even tenor of their way, 'caring for none of these things.' And yet within a few years, our hands have been greatly strengthened, and our success increased, even in the work of purifying our own Church, by the mighty noise as the sound of many waters' wbich has burst forth from every part of the land through the laudable efforts of the American and other temperance societies. The nation and the Churches have awoke from their long sleep on this subject, and the sound has gone forth in every part of our country, the pulpits and the press have united to rouse the latent energies of the people to their danger and their remedy, and the impulse thus given to the ball of revolution on this subject has received an impetus of which eternity alone will disclose the results.
Meanwhile, in common with our Church, I have hailed every victory that has been gained as another triumph of principle over appetite and interest, and another herald of the extension and success of the other efforts designed to evangelize the world. And I have been waiting with anxious solicitude, for the Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States, numbering more than half a million of the population, to present one unbroken phalanx in defence and support of her original principles, by openly, publicly, and unitedly avowing them in the face of earth and heaven; and at the expense, if needs be, of every lover
of the wages of iniquity, or of iniquity itself in the Church or in the land.
I rejoice greatly that this has been done, and I will add, ably and nobly done in the • Address of the General Conference,' adopted unanimously in May last, by the delegates of the several annual conferences, and since printed in the Christian Advocate and Journal, and also in the form of a tract, issued from our Book Room, according to the express direction of said General Conference. This address is from the pen of the Rev. Henry B. Bascom, professor of moral science in Augusta college, Kentucky; was áread in the General Conference, and adopted unanimously as a summary expression of the views of that body on the subject of temperance;' and is at once a scientific and religious document, containing in itself a masterly argument, an eloquent remonstrance, and a forcible appeal ; and is one, the effect of which cannot but be felt, wherever it is read.
The address begins by a declaration that the General Conference . view the subject of temperance as a question of intense and growing interest,' and after a just tribute to the fact that much has been accomplished in preserving those immediately under our charge proverbially pure from the stain, and free from the curse of intemperance, and also to the additional fact that strict and exemplary abstinence from indulgence in the use of ardent spirits and intoxicating liquors of every sort, will be found to have been a part of the moral discipline of our Church from the earliest date of its existence and operations,' we have on the part of the General Conference the admission, that our success has not been entire, and that much remains to be done before we can realize the great object of our long-continued efforts in this very interesting department of Christian morals.'
The address next proceeds to show that the use of wine and strong drink is • broadly and unsparingly condemned in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as directly inconsistent with Christian character, and fatally contravening all the hopes and claims of moral excel
And an array of the testimony of inspiration, presenting the varied warnings and denunciations of the sacred volume on this subject, both from the Old and New Testaments, follows in proof of this remark, which one would think would cause the drunkard to tremble over his glass, and harrow up the soul of every dealer in the accursed thing, who is not already, in the language of the address, ó utterly reckless both of the welfare of this life, and the more weighty interests of immortality in another.' And this mass of Scripture authority introduces a sentiment, which will not be controverted by any who believe the Bible, that the common use of alcoholic intoxicating liquors, of whatever kind, is strictly and unequivocally forbidden in the Scriptures, as plainly and fatally injurious to the best interests of man in time and in eternity. It is thence conclusively and irrefragably argued that “as the experience of all ages and nations has furnished indubitable proof that the use of ardent spirits is totally inconsistent with the essential happiness and relative usefulness of man, and being thus opposed to the benevolent intentions of Heaven and provisions of nature, must be considered as a transgression of the will of God.'
The address next demonstrates from the nature of alcohol, which