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even so, saith the Spirit, for they rest from their labours."
W. This is all quite true; I must not, however, forget to tell you of one thing that pleased me much.
Mrs. W. What was that, William ?
W. Why you know, at a funeral, you often see the idle boys playing about the churchyard and quite careless about what is going on: and this is a very bad thing for them, and very distressing to the people at the funeral. But it was quite different to-day. The children that used to be playing about, all got round the grave to-day, and behaved very solemnly, and seemed all to join in the service.
Mrs. W. O yes: I heard that the Minister had been talking to the children about this, and that they seemed to be convinced how wrong it was to be playing about at such a time; and that they saw, by what he said, that if they gave attention to the service, they might expect to find great benefit from it, and be led to think of such
things as every mortal ought to take to heart. I see then the reason why the children behaved so properly.
W. Yes. It is plain now: and I am very glad to find that they are so attentive to what is said to them.
LETTER TO COUNT STRUENSEE, FROM HIS
Count Ştruensee was a nobleman of Denmark, who had risen to the highest honours of the State. He had lived in every sort of indulgence of his profligate pleasures, and encouraged others to run the same wicked course. He was a perfect scoffer at religion, and introduced every sort of vice into the Danish court. - Christian the Seventh was at that time King of Denmark, and the Queen was the sister of our late beloved King, George the Third. Both the King and Queen seemed disposed to load Struensee with honours, till his greatness and his wickedness brought him to ruin. He managed all the affairs of State; and this he did with such haughtiness and tyranny, that a party was made against him, and he was seized and confined in prison. Whilst he was a prisoner, Dr. Munter, a German Clergyman, attended him, and was the instrument, in the hands of Providence, of leading him to see his past wickedness, and to seek for refuge in that religion, which he had formerly despised and scorned. The Count was condemned and executed; and there was every reason to hope that he was a true penitent and a sincere convert to the religion of Christ.
The late Rev. T. Rennell, Vicar of Kensington, whose loss all his friends most deeply feel, employed some of the last hours of his life in preparing the account of Struensee's conversion, and laying it before the public, in hopes that it might be the means of leading some to see the dreadful danger of sin and unbelief, and to embrace that Gospel which the deeply reasoning powers of Struensee, after calm reflection and serious consideration, saw and acknowledged to be the truth, and from which alone he found that he could hope to see salvation. The Count's father wrote the following letter to his son in prison ; Dr. Munter had kept it in his pocket, waiting for a favourable opportunity of delivering it. Among Struensee's many miseries, that which arose from the grief which he felt that his bad conduct, and his disgraceful end, would give to his excellent parents, sat heavy on his mind. After he had been bitterly sorrowing at the thoughts of this, Dr. Munter put the father's letter into his hands.
The Father's Letter. I could wish that these lines, if possible, may reach you, that you may read and consider.' The melancholy grief, and anxiety of your parents on account of their sons, I am not able to express. Our eyes swim in tears day and night. Our souls cry for mercy to God without ceasing. But I will speak no more of this. There is but one thing which lies heavy upon my mind and that of your afflicted mother. You know our sentiments. You know our intentions when we educated you.
You remember how often and how seriously we inculcated this great truth, that “godliness is profitable unto all things."
As often as I had occasion to speak to you, even then when you were a public character, I reminded you of the omnipresent God, and exhorted you to be careful in preserving a good conscience. Your own heart will tell you how far you have lived up to the exhortations of your father.
Your parents have, for a long while, been in great anxiety about you. Since we lead a retired life, and have very few acquaintance, and you yourself have written nothing about your circumstances, the prayers and sighs of our straitened hearts have ascended to God in secret; and in our anxiety we cried that your soul might not be lost. Three different times—at Halle, Gedern, Altona--you were looked upon as a dead man' by those that stood about your sick bed. God has saved you, and preserved your life : certainly with that only intent, to prepare you, in this time of grace, for a happy eternity. The same is now the chief intention of your gracious Redeemer in your prison. You are his creature; he loves you; you are redeemed by the blood of Jesus. God is a recon. ciled Father. You are baptized in the name of the Trinity. He will make an everlasting cove
nant with you, and he will not desist from doing good to you. Return to your God, my son; he will not hide his face of grace from you. Mind the voice of your conscience, and the conviction which the Spirit of God produces in your soul. Pray to God that he may shew you the true inward state of your soul, that you, enlightened by God, may see how much you are corrupted. Employ the solitude you are in now to search your whole life in the sight of the all-knowing God, that you may see how great and how detestable your sins
Do not fatter yourself.- Examine yourself strictly. Accuse yourself
, and judge yourself before the tribunal of God, whilst you are still enjoying this time of grace.
When you shall feel your sins to be a heavy burden, your heart then will humiliate itself before God, you will pray for mercy, and you will seri. . ously detest and abhor your transgressions. You then will see the great importance and necessity of the redemption of Christ. You then will take refuge in him who receives sinners, who was made to be “ sin for us,” who has paid the debts of our sips, and suffered their punishment, that we might be made “ the righteousness of God in him, and might have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace," Still the blood of Christ speaks for you. He that is merciful still stretches forth his hands. Without Jesus there is no salvation. He is the cause of it. Even for your sake “ he has received gifts." You may have in him righteousness for your peace of mind and for your sanctification. O that Jesus might be glorified in your heart! In him we have happiness whilst we live, whilst we suffer, whilst we die, and after death.
Your mother gives her love to you. She weeps, she prays
with me for our unfortunate sons. My son, my son, how deeply do you afflict us! Oh!
could we but have this only comfort, that our sons turned with all their hearts unto the Lord, and that we, with joy, might find them again in eternity before the throne of the Lamb!
Your crimes, which brought you into prison, are not properly and sufficiently known to us. What is talked of and read in public about you is of such a nature that your parents condemn and detest it. Oh! how I wish you had remained a physician. of your rise to honours we were informed by the newspapers; but it was no matter of joy to us; we read it with grief. Oh! that you had kept, in all your transactions, a clear conscience for the good of Denmark; and that you might have submitted, with all due subjection, to all the commands of your sovereign. We cannot altogether judge about this matter for want of information. But know, that, though we love our children, we nevertheless do not approve of their crimes, nor will we attempt to excuse thein, or to call them good; we rather hate all sins, detest, condemn, and abhor them; and praise God when he manifests his just wrath over the wicked, and shews his mercy to the repenting and the faithful. The Lord our God be your physician in your imprisonment, and cure thoroughly the wounds of your soul.
We, your parents, recommend you to the love of the Lord that has mercy on you.. May Jesus, who is a compassionate High Priest, remember you for good at the right-hand of God, that you may receive mercy before the throne of grace, and be pardoned unto everlasting salvation. Yea, Jesus, thou great friend of mankind, who wilt in no wise cast out him who comes to thee, help parents and children to life everlasting. Rendsburg, March 4, 1772.
The Count's mother also wrote him a letted, which we shall defer to another opportunity.