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fervently pray, that all those who edit our religious periodicals may be enabled to discharge their arduous duties under a deep sense of their responsibility to God and his church.
We will not, however, conceal the fact, that amidst the incessant competitions springing up on the right hand and on the left, there is danger of something like confusion or perplexity in the public mind : works that have done good service to the cause of religion are apt to be lost sight of; while others, too well established, and too highly valued to be permanently injured, experience a temporary vicissitude. We would not attempt to dictate to the religious public, nor would we utter a single insinuation against any of the contemporary publications of the day, new or old; but we venture to remind the friends of evangelical religion throughout the United Kingdom, and more especially the Congregationalists and Presbyterians, that they will be guilty of a great dereliction of duty and gratitude, if they suffer the Evangelical Magazine, which has served them faithfully for more than fifty years, to be so far depreciated in sale, as to be unable to meet the claims of One hundred and fifty of their widows, now receiving stated assistance from its funds, to an amount varying from Twelve to Fourteen hundred pounds per annum. We call on Pastors, Deacons, and Members of churches, to aid us in our anxious effort to preserve unimpaired this boon, for the widows of those servants of Christ who have entered into rest. They can secure this object if they will. It is but to say it shall be done, and it will be done. But this must not be the work of the few, but the many. All have an interest in it. Let all charge themselves with a becoming measure of responsibility. We suggest, as a parting thought-a thought which we believe to be perfectly practicable, -THAT EVERY READER OF THE EVANGELICAL MAGAZINE WILL DO HIS BEST TO SECURE ANOTHER FOR THE 1st of JANUARY, 1846.
FOR JANUARY, 1845.
ADDRESS TO THE UNCONVERTED ON THE NEW YEAR. Another year is gone. How quickly, twilight of the morning and the shadows has it passed! So apparently rapid has of the evening, the months as they pass been its course, that we seem almost un- and the seasons as they revolve, all say able to realize the fact. Yet so it is. to man-Pause and consider, that you We have reached another station in our may perform present duty, and not be pilgrimage through this world; we have hurried into eternity unprepared. Yet advanced another stage nearer eternity. how vast is the number of those on whom How solemn is the truth! Days and such considerations produce no lasting or weeks and months pass away without beneficial effect! Day succeeds to day, calling forth any particular notice, or ex- year rolls on after year, and still they citing in us any unusual emotions; but are found seeking good in the things of when the last day of December closes time, pleased with joys which cannot upon us we are led as it were to imagine satisfy, and captivated with the fleeting that time makes a pause,--that it stops pleasures of this earthly scene. in its progress onward to gain fresh Reader! we address you as one of this energy for the race. It is true, this is number, as one who has hitherto lent a an illusion-a mere fiction of the imagin- deaf ear to the "still small voice” uttered ation, but it is an illusion of which we by the lapse of time, urging you to preought to take advantage for our own im- pare for eternity. In doing so, we would provement. At this season, a point seems beseech you to reflect on the past, and to be indicated for man to sit down and would press on you the importance of meditate on his destiny,—to examine the asking yourself what you have been doing past and the present of his moral history during the twelve months which are now and condition, and from his experience gone. You have been spared, and proof the past to gather wisdom for the fu- bably you have had an ordinary measure ture. But although this period especially of enjoyment in your existence; but are speaks in tones which cannot be misun- you aware that you have lived to yourself, derstood, as to the importance of such and not to God ? that you have, in fact, considerations on the part of man, the lived to no purpose, as far as regards whole course of nature and the divisions your prospect for another world ? Since of time are arranged on the same prin the commencement of the year which ciple, and teach the same lesson. The has just closed, many souls have been
gathered into heaven, and many sinners have neither improved these privileges, ---some of whom, perhaps, you know nor profited by them, and even now you have been led to cast from them the remain in the congregation of the dead. weapons of their warfare against God and Does not the very thought alarm you? Are to submit to his authority, while you are you not ashamed and confounded when still persevering in your rebellion against you review your past carelessness and him, and practically declaring that you obduracy? Mercy and forgiveness through will not have him to reign over you. the shed blood of a crucified Saviour have Why is it so ? Put the question seriously been offered you, but you have refused to to yourself. Have you not enjoyed great accept them. Life and good, death and and important privileges? Have you not evil, have been set before you, but in the been favoured with many signal blessings? | blindness of your minds, and the hardHave you not been warned of the guilt ness of your hearts, you have been maniand danger of your condition, and with festing your preference of the latter. How affectionate earnestness besought to flee aggravated is your guilt, how great is for safety to the only refuge set before your danger ! you in the gospel? Yet, although pressed But turning from the past to the preand plied with the invitations of mercy; sent, what is your intention now in refealthough threatened with the denuncia- rence to the interests of your soul ? God tions of wrath,--you have continued un- has spared you to see the beginning moved and unchanged. You have been of another year — he has prolonged reasoned with, but you have not been your existence, and thus lengthened the convinced; motives have been set before time of your visitation. He speaks to you, but you have not been persuaded; you at this season in a voice which you your consciences have been appealed to, cannot misunderstand. By the close of and though perhaps aroused for the time, one, and the commencement of another you have settled down again in increased period of your existence, he urges you to indifference to the truth as it is in Jesus. pause, consider, and return unto himAt the present moment you are without self. What, then, is your resolution God and without hope, having no bright now? Is the year on which you have prospect for another world to cast back entered to be spent as the past? Are a glowing and a gladsome light on the the same privileges to be enjoyed and trials and sorrows you have to meet with neglected—the same admonitions to be in this. The judgments of Jehovah have received and disregarded—the same invifailed to subdue you, and his mercies tations, promises, and entreaties to prove have failed to melt you; his invitations ineffectual, in inducing you to turn and have not drawn you, nor have his pro- live? Though convinced in your mind mises allured you. Melancholy thought that the path you have hitherto trodden Is this, then, the record which the past is the path that leads to death, are you year has carried into eternity regarding inclined to pursue it a little further, that you—a record of neglected privileges, you may enjoy its "stolen waters," and despised warnings, and abused blessings ? its forbidden pleasures? Oh! “stop and Perhaps no open sin can be charged think.” Perhaps, at the beginning of against you ; but where have been your last year, you resolved to turn your atlove and gratitude to God? You may tention to religion ere its close; but the not have avowed your hostility to the last sun of eighteen hundred and fortySaviour, but in your hearts has there not four has set upon you, and still you are been a destructive indifference to his undecided. And, now, would you proclaims on your affection? You may have crastinate even longer ? If so, when do gone regularly to the "place of the holy," you purpose giving your thoughts to the and have been exemplary in your attend things which belong unto your peace ? ance on the means of grace; but you If you say it is not now a convenient