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der the means of grace, exert a deleterious influence upon others with whom they are conversant. The unfruitful fig-tree encumbered the ground. The injury which The injury which they, who are unfruitful under the means of grace, do to others is great. Are they members of the visible church? Their influence upon the body of which they constitute a part is of a wasting and destructive character. Cold and lifeless members naturally exert an influence upon those with whom they are connected and cause them to become cold and lifeless as themselves. They diffuse a spirit of moral slumber through the whole collective body. They often weaken the hand and discourage the heart of their brethren, who, but for their unholy influence, would be eminently devoted to the service of their Divine Master. Those, who make no pretentions to experimental religion, do also exert a deleterious influence upon the minds of their companions in sin. The influence is reciprocal. Being very numerous, they are frequently kept in countenance, while pursuing their important course, by the consideration of multitudes of which their company is composed. Individuals feel it to be more safe to live without an interest in Christ, than they would do, if the company of impenitent transgressors were comparatively small. Thus those who are unfruitful under the enjoyment of the privileges of the gos

pel, in a spiritual sense, encumber the ground.


5. It is to be expected, that such as encumber the ground, will by one kind of means, or another be removed. The man who owned the unfruitful fig-tree,is represented as saying to the dresser of his vineyard, "Cut it down, why cumbereth it the ground." This should excite the expectation, that those members of the visible church, who are destitute of the fruits of holy obedience, will, in some way, be so effectually removed as to be no longer an encumbrance. Such were, from time to time, removed from the ancient church. all that generation of the Israelites, which left Egypt for Canaan, none except Joshua and Caleb were permitted to enter the promised land. Often under the former dispensation, did God take away the unholy from his visible church by his desolating judgments. To accomplish his perfect work about forty years after the commencement of the christian dispensation, when the whole head of the Jewish church had become sick, and the whole heart faint, Jerusalem was besieged and taken; the temple laid in ruins; the religious privileges of God's covenant people were taken away, and they were themselves dispersed among the nations of the earth.In the visible church at the present time, "There are many whe are united to Christ merely by external profession; by attendance

on ordinances, or by filling up some important station among his real disciples. Every person of this discription, has reason to fear that he will, in some way, be removed. By temptations and persecution many are detected, and become open apostates; some are left to turn aside unto false doctrines, and others are cut off by awful judgments, or silently removed by death."

6. Faithful ministers ardently desire and fervently pray that those, who have hitherto remained unfaithful under the means of grace, may be spared a little longer. "Lord, let it alone this year, also," said the dresser of the vine. yard to the owner of the unfruitful fig-tree. How frequently and how importunately did the faithful servants of God, under the former dispensation, intercede in behalf of his professed people, when,in consequence of his threatenings, it was expected that he was about to bring his terrible judgments upon them. "Turn from thy fierce wrath and repent of this evil against thy people," said Moses, in his intercession with God for Israel. "As for me, said Samuel, addressing them, God forbid, that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you." Jeremiah, in prayer to God for his people, said, "Remember that I stood before thee, to speak good for them, and to turn away thy wrath from them." A similar spirit is possessed by all, at the

present day, who have been truly called to engage in the work of the gospel ministry. In view of the providential dispensations of God, and numerous declarations of his word, the faithful minister cannot but fear, when his people have long been unfruitful under the means of grace, that many of them will be cut down as an encumbrance of the ground. Under the influence of such fear, he is disposed to pray. Spare them a little longer, before they are forever removed beyond the influ ence of the means of grace. Spare them until I have made one more effort to convince them of sin, and to arouse them from their delusive dreams. Though they have hitherto been disobedient and impenitent, yet perhaps, thy powerful word will shortly take effect and they will be reclaimed to the glory of thy grace and to the praise of thy holy name.

7. If those, who have hitherto remained unfruitful under the means of grace, continue so until they are finally cut down, all holy beings will acquiesce in God's treatment of them. After the dresser of the vineyard had plead with the owner concerning the fig-tree, that it might be spared for further trial, he adds, "If it bear fruit well; if not, then, after that thou shalt cut it down." I shall have nothing to say, I shall cordially acquiesce. Such seems to be the obvious meaning of this part of the parable and it teaches

No. VI.

Sandwich Islands.

This mission was established by the American Board, in 1820. It has been attended with more remarkable interpositions of provi

us, that if those remain so who have been unfruitful under the privileges of the gospel, until they are cut down, all holy beings will acquiesce in the divine treatment of them. We by no means say that, they will ever take delight in the sufferings of their fellow dence for the time of its existence, creatures, in itself considered.-- than perhaps any other mission At the same time, it is evident, on record. Though familiar to that the bible warrants the belief many of your readers, it may be that all holy beings will have such proper here to notice the astonisha clear view of the justice of God ing change which took place at in the punishment of the wicked, these Islands, just at the time the that they will entirely acquiesce missionaries were embarking at in it. The inhabitants of heaven Boston. To the surprise of all are represented as singing the song of Moses and of the Lamb, which is none other than a song of praise to God on account of his destroying his enemies. Saint John relates that he heard an angel say in reference to the punishment of certain persecutors of the church, "Thou art righteous, O Lord, because thou hast judged thus: for they have shed the blood of saints and prophets and thou hast given them blood to drink, for they are worthy." And after these things says the Revelator, "I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia, salvation and glory and honor and power unto the Lord our God: for true and righteous are his judgments; for he hath judged her that did corrupt the earth-and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again, they said Alleluia and her smoke rose up, forever and ever.


who had been acquainted with these Islands, the government and the people determined to abandon their idols and to commit them to the flames. The principal men had been informed of the happy effects produced by the labours and instruction of missionaries in the Society Islands, and they expressed a strong desire that missionaries should come and teach them also.

Thus it was the intelligence received from time to time of the blessed results of missionary efforts nearly 3000 miles distant from them, which convinced them of the folly of their idolatrous worship and led them to consign to the flames their altars and their idols together.All this was from the influence of missionary intelligence. At this auspicious moment, missionaries were embarking to go to them. Though this wonderful revolution seemed in a high degree favora ble to the introduction of christian

ity, yet it remained impossible to in different parts of the Island.predict what course things would Many more are anxious to learn, take among a people without any but for want of books and teachfixed principles of action, ignorant ers, they must for the present be of true religion, volatile and denied that privilege. Orders fickle in all their dispositions and have been given out for all the purposes. It was therefore most people, without exception, on this joyful to all the friends of religion and the neighboring Island Oneeto learn that the missionaries at their arrival were gratefully received, and entered upon their labors with the universal approbation of both rulers and people. the kindling of a fire on that sacred

how, to observe the Sabbath as holy time, devoted to the service of the Lord Jehovah; strictly forbidding any play or work, or even

In tracing the subsequent labors day. Drunkenness is prohibited; of these missionaries, and those, and infanticide, which heretofore who have since been added to has been practiced to no inconsidtheir number, we find that success crable extent, is now punishable adequate to the most sanguine ex- with death." From other acpectations has attended them.- counts given by the missionaries, Schools have been established, it appears that the islanders begin and both adults and children have to cherish a kind of reverence for made good proficiency in learning to read and write. The rulers have publicly acknowledged the Sabbath, and done something to promote its observance. Mr. Whitney writes from the Island of Atooi, in January last, as follows, "The chiefs, at their own expense, have built us a very convenient house for public worship, in which I have preached regularly, in the vernacular tongue, for eight months past, twice every sabbath and occasionally on other days. Our meetings are generally well attended and many of the people are desirous of becoming acquainted with the gospel. Under our immediate inspection, we have two flourishing schools of about one hundred and twenty scholars. There are other schools

the christian religion, which it is reasonable to expect will be succeeded by the most happy results. Several of the chiefs have prayers morning and evening in their fam lies, constantly attend public worship, and exhibit much external reverence for divine institutions. "The nation," says one of the missionaries, "is beginning to feel the salutary influence of the gospel, and its rulers are becoming our patrons. Churches are erecting in different places, and pressing requests are made to us for labors which we are not able to afford."

Here is evidence of success beyond what could have been expected in so short a time by the most sanguine friends of Missions. What will be the effect of the re


Indian Missions.

cent death of the king and queen menced in 1817. Mr. Cyrus upon the nation, it is impossible Kingsbury entered upon this misto foretel. But the disposition sion with a truly missionary spirit which the natives have already and has from the beginning borne manifested and the success which with examplary fortitude and the missionaries have already cheerfulness, the privations and witnessed, excite the cheering and fatigues of an untried and arduous confident hope that these Islands enterprise. On his first arrival are already arrested from the in the Cherokee nation, he was great usurper, and that erelong kindly received. During the first the conquests of the gospel will year, he wrote as follows: "Soon be there, as general and as con- after our arrival in the nation, we spicuous as at the Society Islands. opened our doors to receive children into our family, to teach them the rudiments of the English language, the principles of the christian religion, and the industry and arts of civilized life." With the subsequent operations of the original missionaries and those who have from time to time been sent to their aid, the christian community are generally and familiarly acquainted. I need not, therefore, enter upon details.A summary view will be sufficient for the purpose of this number.— The labors of the missionaries, it will be remembered, have been particularly directed to the instruction of children and youth.Schools have been established at each of the stations. The two prominent objects at which the teachers aim continually are the improvement of their pupils, by means of useful knowledge and the formation of habits of industry, both these as subsidiary to the introduction of christianity, and its ultimate prevalence. Already, more than five hundred Indian children and youth have received

The American Board have also established thirteen missionary stations among our western Indians. And a review of these missions is peculiarly gratifying to all the friends of humanity and religion, for appears that there are few places in the heathen world in which a greater readiness is manifested to hear the word of God than among these tenants of the forest. And upon no people surely is the obligation to send to the ignorant and destitute, more imperious, than upon the people of the United States with reference to the Aboriginal inhabitants of North America. In these, as in all other missions to the heathens, where efforts must be made to counteract inveterate habits, and to form a new character for uncivilized people, difficulties must be experienced. But that the missionaries, and the Board, and the christian public, have abundant encouragement, will be seen by a brief reference to facts. This mission was com

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