Gambar halaman
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

He returned in the evening much spent; and immediately went, without any refreshment, to join his people at their meeting of prayer, and recapitulated the sermons of the preceding day. He was evidently much heated ; and Mrs. Moody was alarmed at the tokens of disorder in his countenance. Fle went through the service, however, with his usual spirit; but he had a bad night, and considerable fever.

When he came down in the morning, he said to the servant, “I have had a stroke:” but the family were unwilling to believe that so great a calamity had taken place. Medical help, however, was soon called in, and hope was entertained, from the slightness of the paralytic affection, that he might soou be restored to health and usefulness. He was confined to his habitation the whole of the first Sabbath. Being rather better in the course of the week, he went once to the meeting on the second Sabbath. On the third, he went out twice. On the fourth, he administered the Lord's Supper to his people, but could not preach. On the fifth Sabbath, August 10, he preached once, with pleasure and profit, on IIeb. xiii. 1,“ Let brotherly love continue.”

On the next Sabbath, August 17, he preached once more to his people, a funeral sermon for a member of the church, on Eccles. ix. 10,“ Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do,” &c. This was the last sermon he ever delivered at Warwick; thus closing his testimony with an exhortation to improve the present moment, from the consideration of the uncertainty of future opportunities.

By the advice of his physician, with a view to the improvement of his health, and at the solicitation of his friends at Bristol, he went thither, August 21st, intending to preach a little, should be find sufficient strength. For several days he was teo ill to make the attempt. At length, however, unwilling wholly to decline his beloved work among an affectionate people, who dearly loved him, he ventured to preach on three different days: -once at Kingswood, and twice at the Tabernacle; but the exertion was too much for him, and he became immediately much

He was obliged to give up all future efforts; and roturned with much ditliculty to Warwick, on the 2 and Sd days of September.

Lord's Day, Sept. 14th, though very ill, and unable to preach, he was still desirous of serving his flock ; and therefore adminis. tered the Lord's Supper to them. It was a solemn season, never to be forgotten by the people, who feared it would prove, as it actually did, the last time lie would ever acidress them. He spoke in the most affictionate and impressive manner; and it is particularly recollecter, that he said, he hoped that his silent Sabljathis would speak more loudly than all the sermons he had ever preachel. Ile never more entered the doors of the chapel.

After this he gradually weakened; but still some hopes of bis

worSc.

recovery were entertained ; and he felt inclined to visit some friends at Nottingham, &c. On Sept. 20th be left home; but had not proceeded further than Bedworth before he had a second stroke; and was obliged to return home. When his daughters saw him at Bedworth, and asked him how he did, he answered, “ Aliye, and that is all. I have quite lost the use of my arm and leg.” And when she said, “ But I hope you will recover it again,” he replied, "Never, till the resurrection-day!

For some time after the commencement of his disorder, his mind was greatly depressed ; and if we recollect the nature of his complaint, which commonly lowers the spirits-the sudden stop put to a life of great activity--his confinement to his bed or chairand when we consider how usual it is for the great enemy of souls to seize advantages of this kind, for shooting his fiery darts of temptation, we may easily account for his mental sufferings on tbis occasion.

When his usefulness in the ministry was mentioned to him what an enemy he had been to Satan and his kingdom, and that it was not to be wondered at if he now harrassed him, he immediately stopped this conversation, and said that nothing offended his ears so much as mentioning any thing that he had ever done; and then proceeded to speak of himself in the most humiliating terms imaginable.

When a person said to him, “ I wonder that you should ex. press any fear, for you hare been seldom a day without setting death before you," he answered, “ My office led me to think mych on the subject; but it is a different thing to meditate on it, and to see it approaching.'

This depression of mind was however happily removed; and for many weeks before his death his mind was gcnerally calm, sometimes joyful in the Lord; his resignation to the Divine Will was exemplary, and he scemed to have no desire of his own, either for life or death, referring it wholly to the Lord.

At one time, being asked by the servant how he did he answered, “ I dare not say, though I am sensible of my state, lest I discourage my dear family; but, I think I am very near. my home.”

On the Lord's Day, in prayer, he begged that he might glorify God while passing through the valley of the shadow of death, and that God would sanctify him in his captivity. To bis daughter be said, “ My child! my child! wrestle with God an hour for me to-day. With what pleasure did I formerly lead the devotions in the house of God! I should think it an hoe pour now to join with my people in their worslip; but I trust, bcfore long, to join the General Assembly of the redeemed in glory." * At another time, he said, “Ham pretty well.” Mrs. M. said, I am glad to hựar you say so;' he added, " I mcan I shall

soon be well : I shall soon bave no more head-ache -- no more pain. Mrs. M. asked him whether he did not wish to recover; he said, “ I dare not choose ; let God do as he pleases with mé.

One morning, taking his daughter by the hand, and appearing to be engaged in devotion, Mrs. M. asked him if he was praying for Miss Moody: he answerel, “ I am.- May the Lord keep you in his ways, my dear child, and guide you, and preserve you from sin and temptation. I leave you, my dear, the same inheritance which is left to all the children of gospelministers, The Lord will provide.” le continued for soine time speaking of the Lord's goodlness to her : “ Your bread has been given, and your water has been sure; and what can you want more?

During several weeks previous to his removal, he was generally in a lethargic state; but when something bappened to rouse him from the stupor, he would drop some pleasing and encouraging sentences. On one of these occasions he said, 66 What are the next words to those (repeating, with a sweet smile)

" Jesus can make a dying bed

Feel soft as downy pillows are? This was spoken evidently with a design to encourage his mourning relatives. At another time he said, “ Come, let us confort one another with these words : And so shall we ever be with the Lord."

• ( what a thought,” said he,“ to be ever with the Lord !"

After this he said bat little. Disorder gained ground; his strength was quite exhausted, and he breathed his list about twenty minutes before twelve on Saturday night, Nov. 22; thus leaving his family and friends to weep over their own loss, while his triumphant spirit soared to the regions of immortality, to be with Christ, the beloved of his soul, for ever and ever.

The mortal remains of Mr. Moodly were interrel in the Meet. ing house where he had laboured, on Friday Nov. 28th. The body was carried to the grave by six of his congregation. Tire pall was supported by six ministers; Mr. Jerard of Goveutry, Mr. James of Birmingham, Mr. Whitchouse of Stratford, Mr. Hewitt of Bedworth, Mr. Burton of Bed worth, and Mr. Reid of Warwick. The Rev. Mr. Evans of Foleshill, the Rev. Mr. Burkitt of Kenilworth, and Mr. Rowton of Coventry, walked before the corpse, which was followed by three of the relations of the deceased, and the three deacons of the church. The collin being placed by the side of the brick-grave, which was made near the pulpit, and under the Communion - table, Mr. Evans read The 90th psalm ; after which the congregation, which was very numerous, sang the 110th hyma of Di. Taits, B.4,

לל

" And must this body die?" &c.' The corpse was then deposited in the receptacle prepared for it; and Mr. Evans gave an exhortation to the people, founded on Matt. xxiv. 42–44, “ Watch, therefore, for ye know not what bour your Lord doth come; therefore be

ye
also

ready,” &c. The high estimation in which Mr. Moody was held by his brethren in the neighbourhood, may be judged of by the many funeral-sermons which they delivered to their respective congregations on the Sabbath-day after his intermcnt.

The pulpits of the Tabernacle and of Tottenham-court Chapel, in London, were covered with black cloth, as a token of respect to his memory. A funeral discourse was delivered, at the latter place, on Lord's Day morning, Dec. 7, by the Rev. Matthew Wilks, from Acts viii. 3. " And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him." The Rev. Mr. Hyat preached a funeral sermon, in the evening of the same day, at the Tabernacle, from Matt. xxiv, 41..“ Therefore, be ye also ready,” &c. Both the places were exceedingly crowded. On the same day, a funeral-discourse was delivered to Mr. Moody's bereaved and mournful people at Warwick, by the Rev. G. Burder, of London, from 2 Tim. iv. 7, 8, “ I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith : henceforth, there is laid up for me a crown of righteonsness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day ; and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing." From a larger account of the deceased, included in that sermon, whith has since been published, the preceding pages are chiefly extracted. We shall close our brief Memoir of This truly excellent minister of Christ with the following just and honourable testimony borne to his character in the Warwick newspaper of Nov. 29 :

"On Saturday evening died, aged 50, the Rev. James Moody, a Dissenting Minister of the Independent denomination in this Borough; where, for 25 years, he labonred in the Ministry of the Gospel. Few men, of any religious community, have deserved a warmer eulogiun than this worthy man. He was a diligentitie dent, an able, faithful, and evangelical preacher ; a kind husband, a tencler father, an affectionate friend, a pleasant companion ; in a word, a true philanthropist, whose heart constantly glowed with a generous concern for the gooil of his fellow-men, and wkose. life was a continued series of energies for their spiritual benefit. This is not the language of adulation ; his family, his congregation, the inlıubitants of Warwick and of the neighbouring towns, and his numerous friends and correspondents in various parts of the kingdom, wi'l bear testimony to the superior exceHence of his character, and long cherish his remembrance as one of the best of men."

THOUGHTS ON THE ATONEMENT.

The Holy Scriptures represent the sins of men as a heavy burden. “ Mine iniquities," says David, “ are gone over mine head: as a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me." Under its pressure, the bodies of men by disease, have been crushed down to the dust of death. “ I am bowed down," he adds: “I go mourning all the day long, - there is no soundness in my flesh,

- I am feeble and sore broken !" Under it have sunk the characters and fair fame of men, who by their transgressions have become a“ reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, an astonishment and a by-word among the nations. Under it, “ rivers have been turned into a wilderness, and water-springs into dry ground; a fruitful land into barrenness." Its enormous weight hath overturned thrones and altars, and stately cities; as the rub. bish of Jerusalem, the extinction of her royalty, and the desolations of Zion, awfully testify. Uncler its pressure, Pharaoh and his host of Egyptians sunk as lead in the waters of the Red Sea. The throne of Lucifer the Archangel, reared by the hand of God himself, shook under the crimes of him who filled its pre-eminent seat, and himself, with all who joined in his foul revolt, was hurled down into the lowest heli. The whole creation groans under the sin of man.

How awfully perilous our condition! - to be exposed to the wrathful displeasure of Omnipotence! How passionately did Job exclaim under the feeling only of God's fatherly chastiscment, Have pity upon me, O my friends; have pity upon me, for the hand of God hath touched me. What are the roarings of a lion in the ear of the benighted and defenceless traveller, what the horrible din of war, the thunder of the captains, and the shouting, --when compared with the frown, the uplifted arm of the Almighty ?

When we seriously listen to the denunciations of divine wrath against transgressors, well may our lips quiver at the voice, rottenness enter into our bones, and we tremble in ourselves. ()! that the Spirit of God would deeply impress on our minds a sense of our danger, that we may relish and duly prize the relieving truth, That Jesus Christ his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree !

“ The Lord laid on him the iniquity of us all.” The lan. guage is brought from a Jewish institution, the nature of which is well understood. “ And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goai.” Suitably to this view, «* God," says Paul,“ hath made bim to be sin for us, xv.

Ꭰd .

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »