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"You Will Never Be the Same" -Basilea Schlink ii - My Most Important Discovery After my College Years

You Will Never Be The Same) 0 ii - My Most Important Discovery After my College Years

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We are all the same. We live with our families or we spend time with other people at work or at school, and always notice their behaviour very accurately. Some are irritable and touchy; others easily lose their temper. Some are hurt so easily; others are dishonest, and still others give in to all their impulses. We find it hard to put up with these things. We are irritated every time we see people do these things. Usually we cannot say anything, because they would take it the wrong way. But if only there were a way, we would do everything we could to get rid of the blemishes in their personalities.

But there is something very strange. If we ourselves are often irritated, angry, bitter, jealous, untruthful, impulsive, we usually do not get at all excited and do not take offence at ourselves. Perhaps just because of the fact that we believe in Jesus Christ, we are convinced that we have the assurance of salvation; we are in the "boat" that will lead to heavenly glory. But we do not sense how Satan is perhaps scornfully laughing at us-and justifiably so. Without our knowing it, he has taken our boat into his hands, because we are persisting in sin.

WAKING UP

But one day I woke up spiritually. Before that I was accustomed to reacting angrily when anything did not suit me or when someone said something that irritated me. But I did not think I had done anything wrong. These reactions were beginning to become part of my personality. I had been converted, and, after all, that was the important thing. Until one day, a few decades ago, my eyes were opened. I can still remember where I was sitting when I began to cry bitterly, after I had once again "let loose" at someone in an irritated tone of voice.

What was it that made me cry? Suddenly I was faced with the fact that Jesus had paid the price of redemption for me so that I could be redeemed. Jesus had shed His blood for me so that I could be remade into the image of the Son of God. Where were the similarities between me and Jesus, the Lamb? He was meek and He had promised the kingdom of heaven to the meek. But had I become meek? My relationship to Jesus had become like a relationship to a dead person. It was almost as though Jesus had become just a mathematical formula for me. Certainly I believed that He had paid the price of redemption for me, that I had been bought free, that I was justified. But during the course of time this faith had become an empty formula.

Where was this wonderful, living Christ in my life? Because He is alive today, we can still grieve Him as much as His disciples did long ago. Yet He is the Lord whom we should not grieve, because He has laid down His life in love for us.

Now I could see how much we grieve Him and put Him to shame through our lives, when we do not fulfil His last plea, "By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another" (John 13: 35). That went deep into my heart. My behaviour towards my neighbour was not an example of love, but sometimes just the opposite. Love does good things for others, but I was making life difficult for others. I had taken grace for granted and accepted it lightly as if it were something cheap. Yet grace was bought for us with a high price, with the sacrificial death of Jesus, so that we can only reply to such grace by committing ourselves completely to the Lord. But then we have to hate what He hated so much and what He paid such a high price to overcome: sin. He hated it so much that He died to put an end to it.

HATRED TOWARDS SIN

Did not Jesus say, "If anyone comes to me and does not hate . .. even his own life"-and by that He means our ego, our sinful self- "he cannot be my disciple" (Luke 14: 26)? I was deceiving myself! I thought I was a disciple of Jesus, but I really was not, because I did not have a hatred towards sin. At this time, more than thirty years ago, God suddenly opened my eyes and let me see what sin was all about. It has to be hated so much that Jesus says it is better to pluck out our eyes rather than give room to sin and tolerate it in ourselves. It would be better to cut off our hands than to tolerate what is evil and sinful. Now I saw that sin spreads like a cancer. But I had not recorded as sinful my rebellion and my angry reactions when I had been wronged. Suddenly I saw that it was the same in other cases. For instance, I no longer tried to do everything to keep the Sabbath holy. And Jesus had said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments" (John 14: 15). His commandments were, first of all, the Ten Commandments, which He interpreted with a much deeper meaning in His Sermon on the Mount, making their scope much wider. Had I not read what the disciple who was closest to Jesus had written? "He who says `I know him' but disobeys his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him" 1 John 2: 4).

So I was a liar. And although I said I believed in Jesus, I was outside the Kingdom of God (Gal. 5: 19-21). That means that such people will be shut out from the kingdom of heaven for eternity. Jesus says the same thing with unmistakable clarity in the parable of the unmerciful servant who was bound by Satan and taken into his kingdom because he did not want to forgive (Matt. 18: 32).

UNREDEEMED DESPITE REDEMPTION

Now I could see that there was something wrong in my life of faith. Certainly I knew about the sacrifice of Jesus. As the Lamb of God He redeemed us so that we might "walk in newness of life". But it was merely knowledge. It does not do us any good to have money in the bank, if we do not go and claim it. Nor does it do any good to know about the sacrifice and blood of Jesus, if we do not claim them. So the great grace that had been offered to me remained "dead capital". I realized then that knowledge about Jesus' sacrifice does not make us new men. Only living faith, which is put into action in a battle of faith, can do this. Holy Scripture says, "Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of eternal life" (1 Tim. 6: 12). If I am supposed to take hold of something, I have to do something myself. If I am supposed to fight, I have to make an all-out effort. And I had not made this effort. The Apostle Peter wrote-and it was directed to believers-that the "adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking some one to devour" (1 Pet. 5: 8). I had not reckoned with the truth of this fact. It means that I am in danger, even if I can show my "spiritual credentials": being baptized, converted or filled with the Spirit. I have an enemy who is always on my heels, ready to fight and get me down. He wants to have me as his prey. If the enemy is not only threatening me but has already begun to fight, I will be lost unless I take hold of weapons myself and enter the battlefield. So it is not left to our fancy whether we would like to fight the battle of faith or not, but it is a matter of absolute necessity. Otherwise we are irretrievably lost. We cannot afford to be passive and not do anything, unless, of course, we are not interested in whether we become the enemy's prey.

In the face of these facts I now realized that I had been building castles in the sky, because I had not taken seriously what Jesus and the apostles said so clearly in the Holy Scriptures. So it was no wonder that there was no victory in my life. The Holy Scriptures are permeated with the call to fight against sin so that we can overcome and attain the victory wreath. In the Book of Revelation Jesus says to the churches, "He that overcometh shall inherit all things" (Rev. 21:7 A.V.).

THE REASON FOR JOYLESSNESS

That is why it was not surprising that, at that time, I did not rejoice over the wonder of redemption, and that others could not see the joy of Jesus in me. And it was no wonder that I was not happy. I had taken the wrong path, the path of cheap grace, which was not the way of Jesus Christ and which could never lead me to the goal. If we do not fight, we will not be crowned. And what a fight the Lord demands of us! It is a fight to the point of shedding blood, as the letter to the Hebrews tells us (chapter 12: 4).

However, I had not taken action against my particular sinful bondages every day with prayers of faith. I had not fought against my sinful traits which put Jesus to shame, and which bind me to this earth and to Satan. I had not taken seriously Jesus' command to pluck out our eyes. In other words, I should have taken up an uncompromising fight against the causes of sins. I should have had such a hatred towards everything which gives room to the evil in us that I would not rest until it had been put to death. Now, all of a sudden, I realized how unnatural my passivity was. The moment a person discovers that he has a cancer, he leaves his job and his family, undergoes an operation and probably even spends a great deal of money for it. Although such a cancerous growth can only bring him physical death, he still makes every effort to recover.

SIN IS A CANCER

And what a harmful breed of cancer sin is! Sin is something dreadful. Scripture tells us this, and the reality of life tells us it also. It is rampant in our lives; it makes an imprint on our faces and our behaviour and ruins our personality. It makes us guilty towards God and man. It makes us and others unhappy. Sin will lead us to a terrible place for eternity, a place which corresponds to its evil and darkness. It is the kingdom of darkness, which Jesus talks about so much, a place of horror and torment.

Yes, sin is a poison, which will bring us death, eternal death, a dreadful dying. That is why Jesus says to His disciples, "Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matt. 10: 28). This fear had not gone deep down in my heart. I knew this truth, but it did not radically change my life.

Actually I had the opposite attitude in my heart. I took my physical illness much more seriously than my spiritual illnesses of sin, which could really be deadly. Against the latter I had not waged a vigorous campaign to become free and healed. I did not let the knife cut into me by bringing my sin into the light and confessing it as the Holy Scriptures say we should do; "Confess your sins to one another" (Jas. 5: 16). There were several things I did not confess, because it would have cost me something-it would have injured my pride. I did not make a break with my sin. For instance, when I had a false attachment to another person, I did not endeavour to avoid her. And yet, if I were physically ill, I would take it for granted that I should go to the hospital and break away from my loved ones. Or, similarly, when I was at odds with someone, I did not go and reconcile myself with him, because it would have cost my pride too much.

SYMPATHY WITH SIN

Although I knew so much about the Bible, I had not comprehended that everything in the Bible was concerned with one thing: hatred of sin. Only for that reason does Christ's redemption have such a great significance. For as long as I let sin continue to live in darkness and did not bring it to light through confession, I tolerated it and nourished it, so that it could spread. And Satan, the lord of darkness, then had a claim upon me.

So instead of taking a stand in hatred against sin, I had words of self-pity and excuses for my sin. I felt sorry for myself, because people were making life so difficult for me. I tried to excuse my bitterness. I did not notice that this attitude let my sin grow strong and take deep roots. My motto should have been, "Death to my sin! Into the light!" But instead I handled it tenderly with kid gloves so that it continued to live.

Where did I stand at the time, even though I confessed Jesus as my Redeemer? I thought that I belonged to Him. Yet I had more or less lost Him, because I did not keep His commandments and so I could not inherit the Kingdom of God. I was far away from Him.

SAVED - FOR GOOD?

Can we ever be sure we are saved? Yes, we can, but not with the prerequisite of cheap grace. That became clear to me. Every sinner, no matter how bad he is, can have assurance of salvation.

But he has to admit concretely the truth that he is a sinner. He has to have contrition, i.e. grief about his sins. If I am as grieved over my illness of sin as I would be over a cancer, I cannot tolerate what causes me so much pain. Then I will do everything to get rid of this pain and the sin that makes me so unhappy. And this is possible. Jesus' blood has been shed. His sacrifice at Calvary has taken place, and I can claim it. He declared, "It is finished!" And I can hold Him to it. He has given me everything; I just have to accept it. I do not have to accomplish it; He has done everything. He has already redeemed me-but I have to claim His victory.

The fact that I am a sinner and will remain a sinner all my life, cannot infringe upon my assurance of salvation. On the contrary, my assurance of salvation will be kept from becoming an empty formula of faith, if I fully realize this truth. The joyful knowledge of His forgiveness and the assurance of my salvation will always be kept fresh in my heart.

In that way I can really lie at the foot of the cross with a contrite heart and ask for grace. Then, just like the thief on the cross, paradise will be open for me. But during the last few years, before this turning-point, I had ceased to do this. I no longer cried about my sin; I had no longer had a contrite heart. So I was no longer, dependent upon grace. That is why I was not filled with thanksgiving and praise for grace. For I had been living from cheap grace, which did not bring me the fruit of redemption, and the great joy of being able to reflect more and more of Jesus Himself.

It became abundantly clear that remaining in our hereditary sins and unbroken nature, without regretting it, will lead to terrible consequences. Nietzsche could defend himself by saying: "Christians will have to look more redeemed, if I am supposed to believe in a Redeemer." Countless other people who have renounced Jesus and risen up against Him, have followed Nietzsche's example, defending themselves by citing the fact that we Christians are so unredeemed. On this day my eyes were opened and I could see how wrong my attitude towards sin was. All the biblical truths not only faced me, they sank deep down into my heart and hit my conscience. Full of grief I realized what I had done by taking my guilt towards God and man so lightly. I began to hate sin, which cost Jesus so much. It is something so dreadful that it destroys both the life of the individual and of family or community. Yes, it even binds us to Satan.

LIFE'S CONFESSION - LIFE'S TURNING-POINT

This day brought me the gracious turning-point in my life. I brought my sin more radically into the light than ever before. For I could clearly see that as long as it remained in the dark, hidden from human eyes and ultimately also from my own because I did not want to confront it, it could continue to spread. I brought it into the light, because I knew that light unmasks the enemy. To bring something into the light means to confess it before God and man. So I went to someone and told him what my sin was. I called it by name. I brought it to Jesus again, in the presence of my confessor and renounced it. I knew that without this confession I would not be free; the enemy would continue to hold me in his hand with this hidden sin.

Now that sin had taken on its true meaning for me, I realized that it is not my sin itself that is the important thing, but rather my attitude towards my sin. If I keep it to myself, in my heart, either out of indifference or out of discouragement, I give Satan the opportunity and the right to use my sinning and to turn it into a fruit of hell. But if I bring my sin to Jesus, if I confess it to men, I will find that it is blotted out in Jesus' blood. If I claim the sacrifice of Jesus again and again in the prayer of faith, I will find that "where sin increased, grace abounded all the more" (Rom. 5: 20).

THE NEXT STEP

However, confession and taking a stand against sin was not all that I had to do. Now I had to go to the particular individuals whom I had wronged, whether it was through word or deed. Although I can never actually "make amends", out of thanksgiving for Jesus' forgiveness and out of grief over what I had done to others, I was compelled to do whatever I could to heal the wounds that I had given them.

The sinful deed was now blotted out through the blood of the Lamb. I no longer needed to be despondent about it; I no longer needed to accuse myself and I no longer needed to wallow in this sin. But even though I truly believed that the sinful act-whether it was in word or deed-was blotted out through the blood of the Lamb, I also knew that the root of this sin, that is, the sinful trait, was still in me. I could sense this. And I knew that I now had to fight battles of faith proclaiming the victory of Jesus over my sin. For the blood of the Lamb has power not only to cover sin, but to free me and cleanse me from this sinful trait that lies so deep in my personality and disposition.

DAILY BATTLE OF FAITH

It is a matter of fighting an intensive and persevering battle. So I began to fight this battle of faith and I did this daily. Daily I brought my sins to Jesus and called them by name. Every day I took at least fifteen minutes to call upon His name and to pray a litany of victory such as:

"In the name of Jesus and in His wounds is victory.

Jesus has trodden the head of the serpent under His feet.

Hallelujah! Amen.

I am free from..."

Each time I filled in the name of one of my sins.

I sang verses of victory:

Let praises ring aloud this day,

That Jesus' name has pow'r to break apart

The fearful chains of sin that bind us*

* This song along with others in this book is taken from Mother Basilea's song book, Well-spring of Joy.

And I praised His precious blood, because I knew that something would then happen. To speak in metaphors, the blood of the Lamb is the best medicine for my sinful ailments. I cannot afford to leave it untouched. When we praise the blood of Jesus, Satan yields. He and his demons are standing behind the specific sins in our lives. It had now become a great gift of grace for me to be able to believe in Jesus, the Victor, in His sacrifice and His words: "It is finished!", to believe in the transforming power of His blood. If we claim this victory in faith, by glorifying His sacrifice and His blood shed for us, we will be transformed.

Your precious blood has such great might,

It saves from Satan's hold so tight.

I praise Your blood that sets me free

From Satan's grip and tyranny.

W.J. 184

Then I experienced in truth how the Lord freed me from various sinful bondages during the course of years according to His Word, "So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed" (John 8: 36). I found out that these are not empty words. Through such a battle of faith we can really be released from our chains. Jesus calls Himself the Redeemer. So He cannot help but free us from our chains of sin. His name is Yea and Amen and he will act according to His name. It is His ministry to redeem us. This knowledge filled me with great joy. There is no sin for which His redemptive power is not effective. Whether we are untruthful time and again, give in to our desires over and over again-or to envy, to being hurt, to strife, etc.-no matter what the sinful bondage is, we can be freed from it, even though we remain weak, sinful people as long as we are here on earth.

Yes, because the Victor over all sins and powers of the enemy is fighting on our side, the final victory will definitely be ours no matter how long the battle may last. There may be a long series of lost battles, but there will never be a lost war, so long as we endure in faith and do not shy away from being humiliated when we realize how tightly we are bound.

CRISES OF FAITH

Certainly it often happens when we begin to take up the battle of faith against certain sins, that everything seems to be worse than before. But then it is a matter of continuing to fight in the knowledge that the enemy is only raging and making every effort to keep his hold on us, because he knows that a mighty victory, a release, is coming. Whoever does not shy away from this fight but patiently treads the long path of humiliations will experience the redemptive power of the Victor, Jesus Christ. That I can bear witness to.

Knowing about the unconditional victory of Jesus during such times when I was in an especially difficult battle brought great joy into my heart. I have a Lord, who has sacrificed His life for me. I have a Lord who is Victor. I can fight against my sins by proclaiming, "Jesus is Victor!" I have a Lord, who, as the Lamb of God, has triumphantly broken the power of Satan and sin. This I can grasp in faith. This is the truth. And this truth will make every power of Satan and sin capitulate.

Although this book is about our various "sinful illnesses", I am writing it with great joy, because we do not have to keep our "sinful illnesses". When we are physically ill, we do not know whether we will get well, whether there is really a medicine that will cure us. But what a triumphant fact: we know that we can and will recover from these serious illnesses of ours, whose consequences reach into eternity, for there is a medicine which will make us completely whole. It is the blood of the Lamb, which freely flows from His wounds. Therein lies the victory. There are His words, "It is finished". There is the sacrifice on Calvary. Whoever claims these truths in fighting the battle of faith will get well spiritually. He will overcome his sins, if he is also willing to let the Lord chasten him so that "we may share his holiness" (Heb. 12: 10), and may, to Jesus' glory, reflect His image.

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"You Will Never Be the Same" -Basilea Schlink (Intro)

Mother Basilea, born Klara Schlink (October 21, 1904, in Darmstadt, Germany – March 21, 2001, in Darmstadt) was a German religious leader and writer. She was leader of the Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary, which she cofounded, from 1947 to 2001.

Basilea Schlink was a sister of Edmund Schlink, a professor in theology. Her father Wilhelm Schlink was a professor of mechanics. After finishing high school in Braunschweig and Darmstadt, she was educated (from 1923) at the Fröbelseminar in Kassel, from 1924 at the Inner missions girls' school in Berlin. In 1929 she became a teacher at the Mission House Malche in Bad Freienwalde (Oder) in German, psychology and church history. After matriculation in 1930 she studied psychology, art history and philosophy in Berlin and Hamburg. This study was completed by a religious-psychologic thesis about “Consciousness of Sin in adolescent girls and its significance for their battle of faith.”

Some years later Schlink was living in a badly bombed Germany with few resources, but it was important for her to repent for Germany's cruel treatment of other nations during the war, especially the Jews. She felt the temptation to marry like other young women did. Instead she gave her mission the first priority, and so she became a Sister of Mary.

On March 30, 1947, she and Erika Madauss founded The Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary in Darmstadt. In 1948 both the founders and the first seven sisters became nuns. From then on, Dr. Klara Schlink called herself Mutter Basilea and Erika Madaus called herself Mutter Martyria. Today, The Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary has 11 subdivisons all over the world, with in total 209 sisters, and about 130 of these are situated in Darmstadt.

 

(You Will Never Be The Same) 0 i - A Conversation and its Consequences

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This book has a little story behind it. Many years ago, around Christmas time, I was sitting with my spiritual daughters and we were sharing our experiences together. One of the Sisters had a request, and others joined her: "Mother Basilea, can't you tell us how to get rid of our own special sins, those obstinate ones that just seem to cling to us?"

My answer turned into a lengthy conversation, for one after another they named their sins and were eager to hear how they could experience Jesus' redemption. No one felt embarrassed in front of the others for God's Spirit of Truth was among us. Each Sister knew that she was "sick" and that she needed to be healed by Jesus. Therefore they yearned for the right diagnosis and for the right therapy.

The conversation finally ended with the request, "Please write something about the battle of faith against our sin - something that can help us in a practical way!" So I wrote a few pages about some of the sins for those who needed them and they tried out the prescriptions. After a while my daughters said that this helped them so much that it ought to be made available to all who are looking for the way out from the anguish that sin causes. So the few pages were supplemented and later published as a book. We did this with the victorious joy in our hearts: "So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed" (John 8: 36).

The fifth German edition of this book is now being published in a revised and expanded form. The methods described have proved themselves-not only for me and many of my daughters, but also for many who have come to Canaan or who read this book elsewhere. Our retreat Sisters tell us that the meeting where they distribute the "spiritual medicine" is one of the most joyful meetings. Perhaps there is also "joy in heaven" on such afternoons when people crowd around the "spiritual drugstore" to get advice and help for their particular sins through one of the chapters of this book. It is a wonderful sight to see married couples help each other choose their medicine or see parents choose it for their children or vice versa.

When the leader of a Sisterhood abroad discovered this book and heard the testimonies of our Sisters who lived with it, she was overjoyed to receive the whole "drugstore" for all her spiritual daughters and felt that this would bring a great renewal. And why should this renewal not come about? We have found that when we really fight the battle of faith, daily trusting in Jesus and His salvation, release and transformation will really take place. To Him be thanks and adoration.

A small hint from experience; this book is not meant to be read in one sitting. The chapters about the specific sins are designed rather to help us when we go through certain periods that make us more aware of those particular sinful traits in our character. Thus the book will help us take the best advantage of such situations, as it shows us how to pray and fight a concrete battle-of faith.

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ManOfGod: Watchman Nee "DEFINITIONS"

DEFINITIONS

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Fact

Facts are God's promises, His redemption, His works, and His free gifts.

Faith

Faith denotes the way man believes in God, trusts in His work and redemption, and claims His promises. It is a kind of working and attitude through which God's facts are transformed into man's experience.

Experience

Experience is the proper living of the believers, which they secure through believing in God. It is the expression of the life of Christ practiced in the believers' living. Experience is the realization of all Christ's accomplishments and victories. It is the practical application, manifestation, and living out of God's facts. The histories of all the saints recorded in the Bible belong to this category.

Not only those who are teachers but all believers should know the interrelationship of these three: fact, faith, and experience. Otherwise, they will be confused in their living and in their teachings. Furthermore, they will find many contradictions and apparent disagreements in their reading of the Bible.

I am afraid that up to this point I have still not presented the scriptural teachings in a clear way. For this reason, I want to present a few great doctrines in the Bible as proofs.

We Christians have believed in the substitutional death of the Lord Jesus and have experienced the effect of His redemption. Redemption is an experience for the sinners; we Christians have already been redeemed. For us, redemption is a past experience. It seems as if we have no need to speak of it anymore. Yet for the sake of illustrating the relationship between these three things—fact, faith, and experience—and in order to show us their continuity and importance, I will first use as an example an experience that we have already had.

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ManOfGod: George Mueller "Narrative of the Lord's Dealings with George Muller. Part V"

Narrative of the Lord's Dealings with George Muller. Part V

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PREFACE

TO THE

FIRST EDITION OF THE FIFTH PART

The reasons which have led me to write this volume, and the order of the book, are state in the introduction.

GEORGE MULLER

INTRODUCTION.

——————


For more than ten years I have asked the Lord daily, and often repeatedly in the course of a day, to allow me the honour and privilege, to write the continuation of the Narrative of the Lord’s dealings with me, which was carried on to May 26, 1856; but I was never so situated as to time to be able to do so, till of late. Now, however, I feel not only particularly led to this service, but am also, through particular providential circumstances, able to do it, so far as it regards time. The reasons, which have induced me, year after year, and especially of late years, to desire to publish the continuation of my Narrative, are the following:—

1, When the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad was formed on the 5th of March, 1834, its beginning was, as to outward appearance, most insignificant; and, though year after year it was enlarged, still it was small, comparatively, after ten years, in 1844; and though from 1844 to 1856, when the last part of my Narrative was published, the Institution had in all its five Objects been very much enlarged, it was even then small, in comparison with what it is now, in 1874. My desire, therefore, is to carry on the history of the Institution in this volume to the end of the fortieth year of its existence, and to show, how the very self-same principles on which it was established, and carried on, when small, are in practice now, and only these, while the Institution is large, very large, and very comprehensive; that with the same ease we go forward and find faith and prayer sufficient for everything, though the Institution is a hundred times larger than in 1834 and 1835, and though it is even five times larger than it was in May 1856, the time to which the account is carried on in the second Volume of this Narrative. I desire, therefore, to give the Continuation of the Narrative for the encouragement of the disciples of the Lord Jesus in general, and particularly for the encouragement of those who labour more especially for the Lord, and for the comfort of those who are in particular trials and difficulties.

2, A further reason why I desire to publish the continuation of this Narrative is, that those, who have read the first volume of it, and who saw, how in the year 1830 I took two momentous steps, (in beginning my service as I did in Devonshire in January of that year, solely in dependence upon the Living God, and how, in October of that year, I gave up my emolument in connexion with the ministry of the Word) may see, that verily I was guided by the Lord, and that He not only owned and helped me up to 1856, but that more than ever He has been pleased to make it manifest, since May 1856, how blessed is the man that trusts in Him and in Him alone.

3, The reader of the first two volumes of this Narrative, and especially the readers of the last fifteen Reports of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, will remember, how I have written again and again in my publications "about Stewardship," "consecration of our means to the Lord, together with all we have and are," and also about "systematic giving to the Lord’s Work, and the poor." When writing on these subjects for the press, during the last thirty years, I have hinted at my own seeking to carry out these principles, but I have refrained till now, from giving a practical illustration from my own experience. Now, however, I purpose in this volume, to bring before the reader, how I have acted myself with regard to these various points, and how the Lord has not only blessed me in my own soul in doing so, but how He also, beyond the highest conception of most, in all probability, has recompensed me temporarily, and entrusted me so abundantly with means for myself, that the reader will marvel, except he is much himself acquainted with God, when he comes to the part of my Narrative where I write on this subject. I shall give minutely the account of my life in this respect during the last 43 years. But there remains lastly, one more reason.

4, When I began the Orphan Work, one of the especial objects, which I had in view, was to benefit the Church of God at large, by the accounts which I might be enabled to write in connexion with this service; for I expected, from the beginning, to have many answers to prayer granted to me; and I confidently anticipated that the recording of them would be beneficial to believers, in leading them to look for answers to their own prayers, and in encouraging them to bring all their own necessities before God in prayer. I likewise firmly believed, that many unconverted persons would, by means of such writings, be led to see the reality of the things of God. For the same reasons I began afterwards to publish "The Narrative of the Lord’s Dealings" with me. As I expected, so it has been. In very many instances the reading of the Reports of the Institution, or the "Narrative of the Lord’s Dealings" with me, has been blessed by God to the conversion of those who knew not our Lord Jesus. In many thousands of instances, likewise, believers have been benefited through them, being thereby comforted, encouraged, led more simply to the Holy Scriptures, led more fully to trust in God for everything, in a word, led in a greater or less degree, to walk in the same path of faith, in which the writer, by the help of God, is walking. The many thousands of instances of blessing which have been brought before me during the past 36 years (for almost daily I have heard of fresh cases), have only still further led me to earnestness in prayer, that the Lord would condescend to use these publications still more, and make them a blessing to many tens of thousands of His children, and to many tens of thousands of the unconverted. And now the reader will rejoice with me, when he reads what follows. I am led to relate the following, that the Godly reader more than ever may be encouraged to prayer, and also, that an accurate statement may be given of this fact, which has been referred to in many public places in connexion with Revival meetings, and which likewise has been several times stated in print.

In November, 1856, a young Irishman, Mr. James McQuilkin, was brought to the knowledge of the Lord. Soon after his conversion he saw my Narrative advertised, viz.: the first two volumes of this book. He had a great desire to read it, and procured it accordingly, about January, 1857 God blessed it greatly to his soul, especially in showing to him, what could be obtained by prayer. He said to himself something like this: "See what Mr. Müller obtains simply by prayer. Thus I may obtain blessing by prayer." He now set himself to pray, that the Lord would give him a spiritual companion, one who knew the Lord. Soon after he became acquainted with a young man who was a believer. These two began a prayer-meeting in one of the Sunday Schools in the parish of Connor. Having his prayer answered in obtaining a spiritual companion, Mr. James McQuilkin asked the Lord, to lead him to become acquainted with some more of His hidden ones. Soon after the Lord gave him two more young men, who were believers previously, as far as he could judge. In Autumn, 1857, Mr. James McQuilkin stated to these three young men, given him in answer to believing prayer, what blessing he had derived from my Narrative, how it had led him to see the power of believing prayer; and he proposed that they should meet for prayer to seek the Lord’s blessing upon their various labours in the Sunday Schools, prayer-meetings, and preaching of the Gospel. Accordingly in Autumn, 1857, these four young men met together for prayer in a small schoolhouse near the village of Kells, in the parish of Connor, every Friday evening. By this time the great and mighty working of the spirit in 1857, in the United States, had become known, and Mr. James McQuilkin said to himself, "Why may we not have such a blessed work here, seeing that God did such great things for Mr. Müller, simply in answer to prayer." On January 1, 1858, the Lord gave them the first remarkable answer to prayer in the conversion of a farm servant. He was taken into the number, and thus there were five who gave themselves to prayer. Shortly after, another young man, about 20 years old, was converted: there were now six. This greatly encouraged the other three who first had met with Mr. James McQuilkin. Others now were converted, who were also taken into the number; but only believers were admitted to these fellowship meetings, in which they read, prayed, and offered to each other a few thoughts from the Scriptures. These meetings and others for the preaching of the Gospel were held in the parish of Connor, Antrim, Ireland. Up to this time all was going on most quietly, though many souls were converted. There were no physical prostrations, as afterwards. About Christmas, 1858, a young man, from Ahoghill, who had come to live at Connor, and who had been converted through this little company of believers, went to see his friends at Ahoghill, and spoke to them about their own souls, and the work of God at Connor. His friends desired to see some of these converts. Accordingly Mr. James McQuilkin, with two of the first who met for prayer, went on February 2, 1859, and held a meeting at Ahoghill in one of the Presbyterian churches. Some believed, some mocked, and others thought there was a great deal of presumption in these young converts; yet many wished to have another meeting. This was held by the same three young men on February 16th, 1859; and now the spirit of God began to work, and to work mightily. Souls were converted, and from that time conversions multiplied rapidly. Some of these converts went to other places, and carried the spiritual fire, so to speak, with them. The blessed work of the spirit of God spread in many places.—On April 5th, 1859, Mr. James McQuilkin went to Ballymena, held a meeting there in one of the Presbyterian Churches; and on April 11th held another meeting in another of the Presbyterian churches. Several were convinced of sin, and the work of the spirit of God went forward in Balleymena.—On May 28th, 1859, he went to Belfast. During the first week there were meetings held in five different Presbyterian Churches, and from that time the blessed work commenced at Belfast. In all these visits he was accompanied and helped by Mr. Jeremiah Meneely, one of the three young men who first met with him, after the reading of my Narrative. From this time the work of the Holy Ghost spread further and further; for the young converts were used by the Lord to carry the truth from one place to another.

Such was the beginning of that mighty work of the Holy Spirit, which has led to the conversion of hundreds of thousands; for some of my readers will remember how in 1859 this fire was kindled in England, Wales and Scotland; how it spread through Ireland, England, Wales and Scotland; how the Continent of Europe was more or less partaking of this mighty working of the Holy Spirit; how it led thousands to give themselves to the work of Evangelists; and how up to the year 1874 not only the effects of this work, first begun in Ireland, are felt, but that still more or less this blessed work is going on in Europe generally. It is almost needless to add, that in no degree the honour is due to the instruments, but to the Holy Spirit alone; yet those facts are stated, in order that it may be seen, what delight God has in answering abundantly the believing prayer of His children.

Seeing, then, how greatly God has condescended to own these records in my Narrative, regarding His willingness to listen to prayer, made to Him in the name of the Lord Jesus, I am delighted to give the continuation of this Narrative, because it contains numberless other such instances, in order that thus further glory may redound to God, and that the readers may still further be encouraged to expect great things from God, and to trust in Him at all times, and under all circumstances.

This volume will be divided into Five Chapters. The first will especially give particulars in connexion with the enlargement of the Orphan Work, by the building of the New Orphan Houses No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5, thus providing accommodation for 2,050 Orphans, instead of the 300 only, who were in the New Orphan House No. 1. The Second Chapter will refer to the way in which it pleased the Lord to supply the means for the School—, Bible—, Missionary— and Tract-Fund, from May 26,1856 to March 5, 1874. The Third Chapter will give the Lord’s way in providing for the thousands of orphans, who were in the Five Orphan Houses on Ashley Down, from May 26, 1856, to March 5, 1874. The Fourth Chapter will give the statistics from May 26, 1856, to March 5, 1874, with reference to the Schools connected with the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, the circulation of the Holy Scriptures, Missionary operations, Tract circulation and Orphan Work, as to numbers, amount of means expended and blessing resulting from these operations, as far as it is known, &c. The Fifth Chapter will refer to the Lord’s Dealings with myself personally. The whole volume, however, will be mixed with practical remarks, instructive for young believers, as the subjects may lead to them.


CHAPTER I.


Enlargement of the Orphan Work, by the building of the New Orphan-Houses No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5, on Ashley Down, near Bristol. Practical remarks, letters from donors and Orphans, &c.


In the Fourth Part of this Narrative, Third Edition, from page 206 to 227, I gave minutely the reasons, which led me to seek to build, in dependence upon the Living God, premises large enough to be able to accommodate 700 more Orphans, in addition to the 300 already under our care. I afterwards detailed minutely, how the Lord had been pleased, in answer to prayer, to send one donation after another; and how, on May 26, 1856, I had actually in hand for this object £29,297 18s. 11½d. I now proceed to relate, how, since then, God was pleased further to provide me with means for the Building Fund, but refer only to the more remarkable donations.

June 19, 1856. Received £1700, the disposal of which being left to me, I took for each of the various objects an equal portion, i. e. for the Building Fund £283 6s. 8d., for the support of the Orphans £283 6s. 8d., for the various Day Schools, the Sunday Schools, and Adult Schools of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, £283 6s. 8d., for the gratuitous circulation of the Holy Scriptures among the Poor £283 6s. 8d., for Missions £283 6s. 8d., and for the gratuitous circulation of Gospel Tracts £283 6s. 8d.

July 4. Received £500, the disposal of which was left to me. I therefore took £83 6s. 8d. for the Building Fund, the same amount for the support of the Orphans, and the same amount for the various Schools of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, also £83 6s. 8d, for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures, £83 6s. 8d. for Missions, and £83 6s. 8d. for the gratuitous circulation of Gospel Tracts.

July 5. £245 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, Constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.

Aug. 26. Anonymously 31 old Guinea pieces, with the following letter "Dear Sir, The produce of the inclosed coins to be applied as donations in the following proportions: £10 for Missionary labours, £10 towards your Building Fund, £5 for the Orphans, and what remains divide between Mr. Craik and yourself. A thank-offering for restoration to health."

This is not only an answer to prayer for means, but especially also another answer to my oft repeated prayer, that the Lord would be pleased to incline the hearts of His children to send me their old gold and silver coins for His work, as well as diamonds, jewellery, costly apparel, and other valuable but needless articles.

Jan. 20, 1857 Received £500, the disposal of which was left to me. I divided, therefore, the amount equally between the Building Fund and the five different Objects of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, taking £83 6s. 8d. for each.—£l48 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.

Feb. 21. Received the following letter:—"Beloved Sir, I enclose you £10 as ‘The fruit from seed sown.’ I wish it appropriated for the support of the Orphans, unless the Building Fund still needs it, in which case half to each. In my deep humiliation last year, I consecrated a certain portion of my year’s income to the Lord’s service, and sent you £10 in anticipation of it, and the result is, that I have nearly £100 to devote to Him during the present year. I have other objects dear to Him in view; but if He so directs me, you will probably hear from me again. I rejoice in being able to sympathize with you in the happiness resulting from trusting in, and working for, the Lord. I am, affectionately yours, * * * * *." The donation was taken half for the Building Fund, and half for the support of the Orphans.

Let us ponder this letter, dear reader. The writer says, that the £10 sent is "The fruit from seed sown." Remember in connection with this: 1, There is such a thing as sowing and reaping in this way, according to 2 Cor. ix. 6. Teaching children, visiting from house to house, for the sake of benefiting persons naturally or spiritually; giving money, bread, clothes, &c., to the poor; using our money in any way for the Lord’s honour and glory, is called, according to this passage, sowing; and, the recompense given by the Lord to Him who sows, in time and eternity, is called reaping. The recompense may be, and generally is, more or less, given even in time; often ten fold, yea, a hundred fold, as the Lord repays even in temporal things, through raising up friends for us, or giving his manifest blessing upon our earthly vocation, &c. But suppose, that, for some particular purposes, the Lord did not allow such reaping to take place here on earth, there will be, most assuredly, the reaping in the world to come. I have moved among children of God above 48 years; I have become acquainted with many thousands of them, and I have known very many, who sowed, and sowed bountifully, and I have not yet met with one single instance in which, even as to this life, the Lord has not acted according to His Word, so that as the sowing was, so was the reaping. This leads me to the second point of the verse: 2, "But this I say, he which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully." These are the words of the Holy Spirit by the Apostle Paul. The figure here used is easily understood by every one. The farmer who sows sparingly, reaps sparingly. The two go together. Thus any Christians, who, according to their time, talents, opportunities, and means, do little for the saints temporally or spiritually; or, for unbelievers, temporally or spiritually, will reap little either in this life or in the life to come. God says so: I believe it. In my inmost soul I believe it. Now let any one seek to sow, on the contrary, bountifully, and such a one will reap bountifully, both now and hereafter, if the sowing be done to the Lord, and not from earthly motives, such as the desire of man’s applause, &c. And now, it may be asked, 3, How much of our money, coming in by the labour of our hands, or by our business, or by our profession, &c., should we give to the Lord, for His work, or His poor saints, or in aiding unconverted destitute persons? No rule can be laid down concerning this. It would be unscriptural to say you must give a tenth, or fifth, or a fourth, or a third, or one half, of all the Lord may be pleased to give you; because, under this dispensation, no rule of this kind is laid down. Yet, while there is no such rule laid down, we have the word of the Lord speaking to us thus: "Ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich." 2 Cor. viii, 9.—"Ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s." 1 Cor. vi, 20.—From Peter i, 18, 19; 2 Peter ii, 1; Rev. v, 9; &c., we learn that the precious blood of the Lord Jesus bought us, and redeemed us. Now, if we have been bought by the precious blood of the Lord Jesus, and if we are not, therefore, our own (1 Cor. vi, 19), but belong to Him, with all we have and are; does it not appear most manifest, that our money, as well as every thing else we have, belongs to Him, together with ourselves? What, then, according to this, is the right state of heart for a disciple of the Lord Jesus, concerning his possessions? Is it not obviously this, to present himself with all he has before the Lord, and to say: all this is Thine, for I not merely receive all from Thee, but I myself belong to Thee; command, therefore, what Thou wouldest have me, Thy servant, Thy steward, Thy child, and Thy redeemed one, to do with what I possess. After such a state of heart we should seek; and not only to have it now and then, but habitually; so that not merely the twentieth part of what we may obtain should be His, nor the tenth, nor the fifth, nor a third, nor even one half, but all, if He call for it. But while I say this, yet would I give my counsel further.

If the Christian reader has not grace at present, or has not light, to give himself with all his means to the Lord, after which he should aim, even to be ready, should the Lord call for it, to lay down all at His feet, he should, at least, as far as his love to the Lord leads him, dedicate a portion of his earnings or income to Him, a tenth, a fifth, a fourth, a third, or the half, so that, as the Lord may give to him, he should use the dedicated portion for Him. This plan helps the believer greatly. He will thus more easily be able to give, and to give even much, because that which he gives was dedicated by him to the Lord previously; it is His portion; he will feel it is not his own. In thus giving, say at first the tenth part, he will find how the seed sown produces fruit, how his soul is blessed in thus communicating of God’s bounty, and he will also generally find, that, even in temporal things, he is no loser in thus acting, but, on the contrary, a great gainer, and this will lead such a Christian, after a time, gladly to dedicate the fifth part of all his income to the Lord. In doing so, provided it is done to Him, still more abundant blessing will come to the soul, and still more abundant temporal recompense in return, so that it may lead even to a fourth, a third, or the half of all the Lord may give, to be given back to Him; yea, at last, such a child of God may see it to be his privilege, to call nothing his own, but to hold all as a steward for the Lord. Not that, ordinarily, the Lord calls for all, but rather, ordinarily, such a child of His will obtain more and more even in temporal things. The reason why I propose this plan to my brethren in Christ, is, not to bring their souls into bondage, but to lead them into true liberty. Without some such plan, if there is not grace to hold every thing only for the Lord, there is often very little, yea, scarcely any thing done for Him, by many Christians.

Many children of God have not only no desire that all they have should be the Lord’s if He should call for it; but they have not reached even so far as Jacob had, who did not live under the present dispensation, and who at the first dawning of spiritual light, said to God, "Of all that Thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto Thee." Gen. xxviii, 22. They do not give even the tenth part of all the Lord is pleased to give them back again to Him. They can readily lay out £5000 in the purchase of a house, £200 a year upon the education of each of their two or three sons, keep five servants besides, and live in other respects in proportion with this, and spend, strictly speaking, not £100 directly for the work of God, or for the support of poor saints, or in feeding hungry unconverted persons near them, who cannot earn their bread. What is the consequence? As they live more for themselves, or for their children, than for God, they are not really happy in God, as the real end, for which God has left them here on earth, is lost. But this has not merely to do with the rich or the middle classes of the children of God, but even with the poorer classes. The Christian man with a small salary, or a small business, or the journeyman who only earns his wages, says: I have so little, I cannot spare anything, or, if anything, it can be only the merest trifle. And what is the result? Either all, or almost all, is spent upon himself; or that which is not needed is put by for future days. The consequence is, that such individuals are not happy spiritually, and often also do not prosper temporally, because, as they are not faithful over the little with which God is pleased to intrust them, He cannot intrust them with more, except He do it as to Israel (Psalm cvi, 15) in the way of chastisement, and send leanness into their soul, or to lead them to see the vanity of such things. Often also, both in the case of the poorer classes, the middle classes, and the richer classes, God is obliged to send sickness, heavy losses, loss of business, &c., in order that He may take from His children what they would not gladly, constrained by the love of Christ, lay down at His feet. And now let me in the 4th and last place, tell the reader a little of what I have become acquainted with. A Godly man in London, in the employ of the Government, with 20 shillings per week, and eight in the family, had put by a little money for old age. About 26 years ago, he became acquainted with my Narrative and the Reports. God was pleased to bless them greatly to his soul. He felt that he had scarcely done anything for the work of God. His care about his family; his saying, how shall I provide for my family, had so filled his mind, that he had scarcely ever allowed himself to give away anything but the merest trifle. He now resolved, being greatly blessed in his soul, that he would send me £5 for the Orphans at once, and that he would give back to the Lord for His work one tenth of what He gave him. This was about 26 years since. What was the result? Immediately after, he was informed that his wages were raised two shillings per week, and that for the past sixteen weeks this increase should be paid to him at once. So he immediately received £1 12s. for the £5 which he had given, and this increase of wages since then, (to 1856), has amounted to about £50. From that time, yearly, once or twice, this dear man, whom I have never seen, has sent me something. He had found it difficult before to spare a sixpence; now he had the means to spare half crowns, half sovereigns, yea, sovereigns. About two or three years afterwards, he sent me another £5 for the support of the Orphans. Shortly after he was informed that his wages had been raised another two shillings per week. This has brought him, since then, between £30 and £40 more. No doubt, in other ways also, God has blessed him and prospered him: by keeping away sickness, by making a little go far, by prospering the endeavours of his children to earn something, &c. On May 8th, 1856, I received from this same dear man £10 for the work in which I am engaged: so much had God helped him, and prospered him temporally and spiritually, that, constrained by the love of Christ, this offering was made. In such a way life has its sweetness, even the life of a journeyman, or a day labourer. We feel, then, that we live for others, care about others, serve others. As for myself, I freely own that while I am ready to depart, if this be the will of the Lord; on the other hand, if He would only give me grace to live to Him, I would gladly stay fifty years longer in the world, and have the privilege of serving Him, and thus to sow seed for eternity. I fear that many true Christians do not practically remember, that, while we are saved by grace, altogether by grace, so that in the matter of salvation works are altogether excluded; yet, that so far as the rewards of grace are concerned, in the world to come, there is an intimate connexion between the life of the Christian here, and the enjoyment and the glory in the day of Christ’s appearing.

I give another instance. I knew about 40 years ago a very poor lad. This lad worked at that time at a factory. After some time he was converted, and by his Godly deportment and attention to his business obtained a better place in the factory, till, at last he, together with another Godly young man, became one of the managers of this factory. After some time, the one to whom I refer, entered into a little business on his own account, in which soon the Lord began to prosper him, and has prospered him now for more than 25 years. And what, dear reader, do you suppose is the secret of his success? It is this, that, as God has been pleased to prosper him, this dear man has opened his hand and communicated to the poor, or to the Lord’s work bountifully, out of that which the Lord has given him. This Godly tradesman whom I well knew as a lad without a sixpence in his pocket, has, through liberality, after he had entered upon a little business, been able to give away many hundreds of pounds.

Again, I know such, in the higher and richer classes, both in business, and out of business, more than one or two or three, who, having given thousands of pounds, yea many thousands of pounds to the work of the Lord, have had repayment from the Lord, in tens of thousands of pounds, yea, many tens of thousands of pounds.

The following deeply interesting particulars are recorded in the memoir of Mr. Cobb, a Boston, merchant, which I judge so very valuable in illustrating what I have said above, that I insert them here.

At the age of twenty-three, Mr. Cobb drew up and subscribed the following remarkable document

"By the grace of God I will never be worth more than 50,000 dollars.

"By the grace of God I will give one-fourth of the net profits of my business to charitable and religious uses.

"If I am ever worth 20,000 dollars I will give one-half of my net profits; and if ever I am worth 30,000 dollars, I will give three-fourths; and the whole after 50,000 dollars. So help me God, or give to a more faithful steward, and set me aside."

"To this covenant," says his memoir, "he adhered with conscientious fidelity. He distributed the profits of his business with an increasing ratio, from year to year, till he reached the point which he had fixed as a limit to his property, and then gave to the cause of God all the money which he earned. At one time, finding that his property had increased beyond 50,000 dollars, he at once devoted the surplus 7,500 dollars.

"On his death-bed he said to a friend, in allusion to the resolutions quoted above, ‘by the grace of God—nothing else—by the grace of God I have been enabled, under the influence of these resolutions to give away more than 40,000 dollars.’ How good the Lord has been to me!"

Mr. Cobb was also an active, humble, and devoted Christian, seeking the prosperity of feeble churches; labouring to promote the benevolent institutions of the day; punctual in his attendance at prayer-meetings, and anxious to aid the inquiring sinner; watchful for the eternal interests of those under his charge; mild and amiable in his deportment; and, in the general tenor of his life and character an example of consistent piety.

His last sickness and death were peaceful, yea triumphant. "It is a glorious thing," said he, "to die. I have been active and busy in the world—I have enjoyed as much as anyone—God has prospered me—I have every thing to bind me here—I am happy in my family—I have property enough—but how small and mean does this world appear on a sick bed! Nothing can equal my enjoyment in the near view of heaven. My hope in Christ is worth infinitely more than all other things. The blood of Christ—the blood of Christ—none but Christ! Oh! how thankful I feel that God has provided a way that I, sinful as I am, may look forward with joy to another world, through His dear Son."

I have spent more than 46 years in service for the Lord. During this period, especially during the last 40 years, I have become acquainted with many thousands of believers, many hundreds of whom I have known intimately as well as their private affairs. Moreover, many, very many, have honoured me with desiring my counsel and advice in their private and secret affairs. What have I learnt, among other points, by this? That "there is that scattereth and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself." Prov. xi, 24, 25. Many instances have I seen in which the children of God scattered, and yet increased; yea, scattered much, and yet abundantly increased; but far more have I seen, in which they withheld more than was meet, but it did tend to poverty. With all the desire to get on, very many were not able to do so, just because they only lived to themselves, they withheld more than was meet, and it tended to make or keep them poor. Bad debts, unexpected and unaccountable loss of custom, heavy family afflictions, &c., took away the money, which they sought to keep for themselves, contrary to the will of God. (I speak here of the children of God, and not of the world. "Whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth." The world is judged and condemned at the judgment day. 1 Cor. xi, 32).—Again it is written: "Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the first fruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new Wine." Prov. iii, 9, 10. There is nothing Jewish in these two passages. They are, as to the principles contained in them, deeply important for the believer under the present dispensation. If any man will do the Lord’s will, contained in them, he shall know, by happy experience, that to apply them to the present dispensation is scriptural. The natural mind in many professed disciples of the Lord may put aside such passages; but be not you robbed, esteemed reader, of the blessings connected with acting according to them, which blessings I have myself known for many years, whilst seeking to practice them. The reader who desires further information on this deeply important subject, may obtain some more hints by reading from page 575 to page 604, in the first volume of this Narrative. Ninth Edition. I now return to the income for the Building Fund.

Feb. 21, 1857 £98 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.—April 11 From Staffordshire, £100—May 26. £48 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.

I add the following information:—

a. Up to this day, May 26, 1857, the total income for the Building Fund is £31,817 1s. 11d., so that only about £3,200 more will be required, as far as I am able to judge, to accomplish to the full my purpose respecting the accommodation for 700 more Orphans.

b. The house for 400 Female Orphans, commenced in August, 1855, is now, with God’s blessing, so far advanced, that it is shortly expected to be finished. The new house is intended for 200 Infant Female Orphans from their earliest days, and for 200 Female Orphans from about eight years of age, up to the time they are fit to go to service.

I now give a few instances out of the many donations, received between May 26, 1857 and May 26, 1858, for the Building Fund.

July 15, 1857. £10 from Bombay.—Sept 18. I had just returned home from the newly-built house for 400 more Orphans, where I had tried the efficiency of the gas apparatus with its 150 burners, when I found a cheque for One Thousand Pounds from a brother in the Lord, who desires to spend the whole of his large income for the Lord, laying up no treasure on earth, and spending very little upon his own necessities. He writes: "Desiring that our heavenly Father will guide me as a steward of His bounty; and, after seeking His direction, I conclude it is good and profitable to invest a little in the Orphan Houses. Will you please to put the inclosed sum towards the Building Fund." I make the following remarks in connexion with this donation:

1, When I felt led to enlarge the Orphan-work, so that a thousand, instead of 300 Orphans, might be provided for, I had no natural prospect whatever, of obtaining the means. But while I had no natural prospects of accomplishing my desire, I had faith in God, and was assured that He would help me through all the difficulties. Accordingly He sent me one donation after the other, and by large and small sums encouraged me yet further and further to look to Him. This donor, at that time, had not the ability, however willing he might have been, to help me to such an extent; but God knew already, that He would give him the means, and make him one of the many helpers to carry out my plans, made after much prayer, concerning this enlargement.

2, The donor sent this donation, as he writes, after prayer, and concludes it is "good and profitable to invest a little in the Orphan Houses." Even as to the way of spending our money, we should not be led by mere feeling, much less be influenced by its becoming known, and our thus getting esteem from our fellow-men; nor should we do things because others do them; but, as the stewards of God, we should contribute the much or the little we have to give, as we are led after prayer, doing always what we do to God, and not to man.

3, The donor writes, he considers it "profitable to invest a little in the Orphan Houses." Do all the readers understand the meaning of this? The donor has not received any interest from me, nor will he have any from me on thus £1000; and yet, I doubt not, this investment will be profitable to him. In such cases I have found that the Lord, even in this life, has taken notice of such deeds, and given ample repayment, often tenfold, twentyfold, yea, in not a few instances, even a hundredfold, according to that word: "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."—Luke vi, 38. "He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully."— 2 Cor. ix, 6. But while even as to this life we shall not be losers by acting faithfully as the Lord’s stewards, yet what shall we say when looking at the day of Christ, when even the cup of cold water, given to a disciple in the name of a disciple, shall be rewarded. Were it more habitually before our minds, how brief this present life is in comparison with eternity, and how bright and glorious, and unspeakably precious the blessings are which await the believer in the day of Christ; how gladly should we seek habitually to spend and be spent for Him. Let the believer only realize the vanity of earthly things, and the preciousness of heavenly treasures, and he will seek to live for eternity, and among other things will be delighted to lay up treasure in heaven. It may not be that the money is given to an Orphan-Establishment, nor even to Missionary objects; but in some way or other such a one will consider it an honour and a privilege to be allowed by the Lord to use his means for Him.

This donation helped me another step nearer the full accomplishment of my desires respecting the enlargement of the Orphan-Work.

Nov. 12, 1857. The long looked for, and long prayed for, day had now arrived, when the desire of my heart was granted to me, to be able to open the New Orphan-House No. 2, for 400 additional Orphans. Much had I laboured in prayer and active engagements to accomplish what was to be done, previously; and now things were so far advanced, as that the new house was ready for use; and a few days after we began to receive the children into it. How precious this was to me, will be understood by those, who, having day by day prayed for a blessing for seven years, and often repeatedly on the same day, at last obtain the desire of their heart. Yet this blessing came not unexpectedly to me, but had been looked for, and had, in the full assurance of faith, been expected in God’s own time. In connexion with this I also mention, that, for several years previously, yea, years before a stone had been laid for the building, I had daily asked God, that He would be pleased, by His providential government, and by the working of His Holy Spirit, to fit and qualify helpers for the work: and now, when the house was ready, the helpers also were ready, so that, without difficulty, and without advertising, they were obtained. Thus these thousands of prayers reaped a precious harvest in this particular also. Only continue, dear Christian reader, patiently to wait on God, and, as assuredly as your request is for the Glory of God, for your real good, and you ask in the name of the Lord Jesus, believing that God hears you, the answer will be granted. You may have to pray long, as I had in this case for nearly seven years; but the answer is certain. I now relate further how the Lord was pleased to supply me with means, and how, at last He gave me the amount needed for accomplishing fully the intended enlargement of the Orphan-Work, not for 400 only, but for 700 additional Orphans.

Jan. 19, 1858. Received £3000, which was left to my disposal. I took of it for the Building Fund £600, for the support of the Orphans £600, and for the other objects of the Institution, viz., for Missions, the circulation of the Holy Scriptures and Tracts, and for the various Schools £1,800—Yesterday I received a letter, stating that a stranger had offered to pay One Hundred Guineas to the funds of the Institution, if, together with an Orphan girl, who was to be received, I would at the same time, admit her brother, whose turn was not come. This was of course, declined, as the cases of the Orphans are considered in the order in which applications are made, and according to the vacancies which occur for boys and girls, and money never influences me in the least.—Now see, Christian reader, how God recompensed this acting in His fear, irrespective of the loss of the money.—But I must further add, in connection with this, that the lady, who had offered the One Hundred Guineas, and who received this negative reply, an entire stranger to me, very kindly sent me £300 a little while after, though the little boy was not admitted, because his turn was not yet come.

Feb. 16. Received £800, and from another donor £700. Both these donations were left at my disposal, to be used as might appear best to me for the Lord’s work. Of the £800 I took, therefore, for the Building Fund £200, for the support of the Orphans £200, and for the various other objects of the Institution, viz., Missions, the circulation of the Scriptures and Tracts, and the various Schools, £400. Of the £700 I took for the Building Fund £200, for the support of the Orphans £200, and for all the other various objects of the Institution £300—Feb. 17. £245 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.—As far as I am able to judge, I have now all that is required in the way of pecuniary means for the third house also, so that I am able to accomplish the full enlargement of the Orphan work to One Thousand Orphans.

Pause, esteemed reader! Nearly seven years had I been, day by day, asking the Lord for the needed means, to carry out the desire of my heart, concerning the Thousand Orphans. Not a single day had elapsed since first I began to pray for means, in which I had not been enabled, in the full assurance of faith, that it would be granted, to bring my request before God, and generally I had prayed more than once a day concerning this matter. When I began my request for means, viz., to entreat the Lord to give me Thirty Five Thousand Pounds, I knew well what difficulty there was in the way of my obtaining this sum, looking at it naturally. I am too calm, too calculating a person, too much in the habit of weighing all the difficulties of a case, to be carried away by excitement or imagination. I knew I had no ground naturally to expect this large sum. For months, therefore, I had not prayed at all for means for this enlargement, but had only asked the Lord to show me very clearly whether it was His will that I should go forward; but, having once come fully to this conclusion, on the grounds stated at large in the Fourth part of this Narrative, from page 206 to page 227 of the Third Edition, I was as certain that the Lord would give me all I needed, as if I had had the money already in hand. It might, at that time, have been naturally said to me, and indeed it was said to me, "How will you be likely to obtain this large sum of Thirty Five Thousand Pounds for the Building Fund, and at the same time be able to meet the current expenses of the work already in existence?" The reply of faith was, I know not whence the money is to come, but I know that God, on whom I depend, is able to provide me with all I need, for the current expenses, and also to give me money for the Building Fund. When in November, 1845, contrary to all my former desires, I was led as by an unseen hand, to decide upon leaving the four rented houses, and to build the New Orphan House No. 1 for 300 children, it was considered strange that I should think of enlarging the work from 120 to 300 Orphans, when for years previously I had had almost habitually to wait upon the Lord day by day for daily supplies. Yet so it was, that the Lord gave me all I needed for the Building Fund, although that was no less than £15,055 3s. 2¼d., and I had £776 14s. 3¾d. more than I required. Moreover, all the current expenses were met in the meantime, and we were able to begin housekeeping at the New Orphan House No. 1 with about Five Hundred Pounds in hand, whilst, before I had thought about building that large house, we had had very rarely as much as £100 in hand, and very often scarcely 100 pence. So this time, whilst the means for the Building Fund were coming in, I had to meet the current expenses, which for the Orphans alone amounted to £26,249 10s. from May 26, 1851 to Feb. 17, 1858, and for the other objects, in the same time, £25,670 9s. 6½d., being altogether £51,919 19s. 6½d.; and when the new house for 400 Orphans was opened on Nov. 12, 1857, I had in hand

£2,292 0s. 11¾d. for the current expenses of the Orphans. See, esteemed reader, how unbelief is put to shame, and natural reasoning is confounded. Had I, at my own bidding, or for my own honour, or for the gratification of self in some way or other begun this enlargement, I could have expected nothing but to be confounded. Or, good though my intentions had been, had I not been called for the work, I could have expected nothing but to be confounded. Or, had I regarded iniquity in my heart, whilst seeking to carry out this enlargement, I might have prayed much outwardly, but I should not have had my desires granted as to the obtaining of means. I dwell upon these matters for the profit of the reader, especially the young Christian reader, or even older believers whose faith is weak, in order that thus they may be helped on in the divine life.

Up to May 26, 1858, I had received for the intended enlargement of the Orphan Work, to be able to accommodate 1000 Orphans instead of 300, the sum of £35,335 9s. 3d., being actually £335 9s. 3d. more than I had been from the commencement praying for. Let this encourage the reader! I add the following remarks respecting the intended further enlargement of the Orphan work:

For some time previous to May 26th, 1858, I had judged it to be far better to keep the ground belonging to the Orphan Houses free from buildings, and to purchase land for the intended third house. As soon, therefore, as I had obtained in January and February 1858 the large donations referred to, which furnished me with all I yet needed, I took active measures towards purchasing a field near the New Orphan Houses No. 1 and No. 2. The purchase was made; there arose, however, certain difficulties regarding the matter, which, for many weeks, it was hoped would be removed; but, on June 2nd, 1858, it was finally decided, that it would be undesirable to go on with the completion of the purchase. I could therefore do nothing, in going forward with the New Orphan House No. 3, until I had obtained suitable land.

I refer now to some other donations, as specimens, how the Lord was pleased, over and above the Thirty Five Thousand Pounds, earnestly sought at His hands by prayer and faith, abundantly to supply us with means.

Sep. 27, 1858. £95 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.

It has been stated before, that when I had received the means required for the third house, I was looking out for land for it. Regarding this I waited day by day upon God, but for many months it pleased Him to exercise my faith and patience. When, more than once I seemed to have obtained my desire, I again appeared further from it than ever. However, I continued to pray and to exercise faith, being fully assured that the Lord’s time was not yet come, and that, when it was, He would help. And so it proved.

At last, in September 1858, I obtained 11½ acres of land, quite close to the New Orphan Houses No. 1 and No. 2, and only separated from them by the road. On these 11½ acres of land a house was built. The price for house and land was £3,631 15s., being more money than I should have seen it right to expend on the site, had it not been of the utmost importance, that the third house should be quite near the other two, to facilitate the superintendance and direction of the establishment. Thus, at last, this prayer also was answered, concerning which I had been waiting upon God for so many months, and concerning which the difficulties as to sight and reason seemed so great, but respecting which my mind was continually at peace; for I was sure, that, as I was doing God’s work, He would, in His own time, help me in this particular also. The longer I go on in this service, the more I find that prayer and faith can overcome every difficulty.

Having now obtained land, and so much, my desire was to make the best use of it, and to build for 400 Orphans, instead of for 300, as I had previously purposed to do. After having had several meetings with the architects, and finding that it was possible to accommodate with comparatively little more expense 450 Orphans, instead of 400, I finally determined on that number, so as to have eventually 1150 Orphans under my care, instead of 1000, as for several years previously had been contemplated. The greatness of the number of destitute children, bereaved of both parents by death;—together with the greatness of the Lord’s blessing, which had during all the many years previously rested upon my service in this way;—and the greatness of the Lord’s help in giving me assistants and helpers in the work as well as means; and, above all, the deep realization that I have but one life to spend for God on earth, and that that one life is but a brief life:—These were the reasons which led me to this further enlargement. To this determination of a still further enlargement, I came solely in dependence upon the Living God for help, though the increase of expense for the Building Fund, on account of the purchase of the land, and accommodation to be built for the additional 150 Orphans, more than had been from the beginning contemplated, would not be less than from £6000 to £7500 more than I had originally expected the total of the premises, which were to be erected, would cost; and though, in addition to this, the yearly additional expenditure for the maintenance of these 150 Orphans, beyond the intended number of 1000, could not be less than £1800 a year. But none of these difficulties discouraged me.

It will now be interesting to the reader to see how the Lord dealt with me, since I came to this decision. I therefore go on to refer to at least a few of the donations, which came in for the Building Fund since October 29, 1858.

Dec. 26. Received information that a glass manufacturer and a glass merchant will kindly supply gratuitously all the glass required for the New Orphan House No. 3, which is expected to contain about 350 large windows.

Jan. 4, 1859. Received £7000, which, being entirely left at my disposal, I took £4000 for the Building Fund, £1000 for the support of the Orphans, £1500 for Missions, £400 for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures and Tracts, and £100 for the various Schools.—When I decided at the end of October, 1858, to build for 450 Orphans, instead of 300, I needed several thousand pounds more, and was fully assured that God would give me the required means, because in reliance upon Him, and for the honour of His name, I had determined on this enlargement; and now see, esteemed Reader, how the Lord honoured this my faith in Him!—Jan. 6. From Brixton £2, as "A thank-offering to God for an unbroken family at the beginning of the year." From an anonymous donor at Manchester £300, with the very kind promise to send me £900 more, in the course of this year, for the Building Fund.

Feb. 1. Received £1700, the application of which being left entirely to myself, I took for the Building Fund £400, for the support of the Orphans £300, for Home Missions £350, for Foreign Missions £350, for the circulation of Bibles £100, for the circulation of Tracts £100, and for the School Fund £100—Received likewise this day £1000, of which the application was left to myself, and of which I took for the Building Fund £300, for the support of the Orphans £200, for Foreign Missions £200, for Home Missions £100, for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures £100, for the circulation of Tracts, £50, and for the School Fund £50.

Do you perceive, esteemed Reader, how precious it is to trust in God? Do you see, that, if we ask God for that which is according to His mind, and ask it in the name of the Lord Jesus, and believe that He hears us, we do not wait upon Him in vain? Make but trial of this blessed way for yourself, in your own individual sphere, and under your own individual trials and necessities, and you will find, as we have, times without number, that you do not wait upon God in vain. But you must previously have decided, upon Scriptural ground, that that regarding which you pray, is for the glory of God; you must further ask it at His hands on the ground of the merits and worthiness of the Lord Jesus as a believer in Him for the salvation of your soul; and you must believe that God hears you, and will in His own time and way attend to your request.

Feb. 8, 1859. £245 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.

May 26, 1859. Up to this day has been received, towards the enlargement of the Orphan work, the sum of £41,911 15s. 11d. The New Orphan House No. 3 is intended for 450 girls from eight years old and upward, to remain till they are fit to be sent to service. The plans of the building of No. 3 are all completed, and in a few weeks it is expected that the building will be commenced, God willing.

July 11. Received from A. B., anonymously, £400.

Dec. 31. From Lancashire £300

Jan. 1, 1860. From Lancashire £200—Jan. 31. Received £3000, left entirely at my disposal, to be used for the various objects of the Institution. I took, therefore, £500 for the Building Fund, £500 for the support of the Orphans, and £2,000 for the School—, Bible—, Missionary— and Tract Fund. The previously mentioned large donations from A. B. and from Lancashire, together with this last one, and many smaller donations, not mentioned, received for the Building Fund, furnished me to the full with means for accomplishing the whole of the enlargement, though the amount required was somewhat more, when the estimates for No. 3 came in, than had been anticipated.

May 16. £270 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.—May 22. £200 out of a donation of £2700, left at my disposal, was taken for the Building Fund, the rest for the other objects of the Institution.—May 26, 1860. Up to this day I had received, altogether, for the contemplated enlargement, £45,113 14s. 4½d. The building of the New Orphan House No. 3 Was commenced in July, 1859, and has been steadily going on up to this day.

Apr. 9, 1861. Received anonymously, a gold ring set with five diamonds and two sapphires, a gold necklet with locket, a gold locket brooch, a gold pencil case, a gold cross, anchor and heart, a silver vinaigrette and a pair of silver bracelets.—April 17. £270 from a servant of the Lord Jesus, who, constrained by the love of Christ, seeks to lay up treasure in heaven.—May 17. A glass manufacturer and glass merchant kindly gave all the glass required for the 390 large windows of No. 3.—May 26, 1861. Up to this day had been received for the enlargement of the Orphan work, originally intended for 700 more Orphans, but afterwards extended to 850 Orphans, the sum of £46,660 17s. 3d., so that the amount first prayed for, was exceeded by £11,660 17s. 3d. The reader will have, therefore, in this a fresh proof of the blessedness of committing our matters, great and small, temporal and spiritual, into the hands of our Heavenly Father, waiting patiently for the answer to our prayers. We did not obtain the answer to our prayers at once. Thousands of times, many thousands of times our request had to be repeated before our Heavenly Father, and faith and patience were exercised year after year, before the full answer regarding this matter was granted; but at last our prayers were not only answered to the full, but £11,660 17s. 3d. more was received than had been at first asked for.


Contemplated further enlargement of the Orphan Work.

The following statement was published in the Twenty-Second Report of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, in 1861, and is reprinted here:

"It is now ten years, when, as by an unseen hand, I was led to that enlargement of the Orphan work, which is now, with the Lord’s blessing, all but completed. The exercise of spirit I passed through, and the reasons which finally led me to that enlargement of the work from 300 to 1000 Orphans, and which, in 1858, was finally still further extended to 1150, may be fully seen in the fourth part of this Narrative, from page 206 to 227 of the Third Edition. I have now to inform the reader, that, as ten years ago, so again during the last months, day by day, my spirit has been exercised about a still further enlargement of the Orphan work, so that there should not only be 1150 destitute children, bereaved of both parents by death, cared for, in connection with the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, but 2000; and that still further premises should be built, as two separate establishments, for 850 more Orphans, being a fourth and fifth Orphan House, in addition to the three already built. The reasons which, after daily prayer for guidance, self-examination, and looking steadfastly at all the many difficulties connected with this further enlargement have finally decided me, are the following:

1, The longer I go on in this service, and the more it becomes known, the greater is the number of destitute children, bereaved of both parents by death, who are applied for to be admitted into the Orphan Houses under my direction. Almost daily fresh cases are brought before me, and sometimes 3 or 4 or more at once; and it is not a rare thing, that in each such case there are 3, 4, or even more young children. I am, therefore, willing, to be yet further the servant of the Lord in this particular work, although I am unworthy, most unworthy, that He should condescend thus to use me.

2, But that which at first especially was used by the Lord to direct my mind to this further enlargement, was not only the greatness of the number of applications for Orphans in general, but for boys in particular. For girls we had the prospect of doing something more, when the house for 450 should be opened; but for boys we had no such prospect, nor anything like it, though about 400 were waiting for admission, and hundreds of applications for boys had been declined, as there was no prospect of being able to admit them. The reasons which have led me to care for girls to a greater extent with regard to numbers, than for boys, are these: a, Girls are the weaker sex, and therefore call more particularly for Christian sympathy. b, If neglected, they are still more exposed to the danger of being utterly ruined. c, Girls we have employment for, and can keep them without difficulty till they are 18 or 19 years of age, whilst boys need to be apprenticed when 14 or 15. But I have generally found, that the age from 14 to 18 or 19 is the most important as young persons, with regard to their spiritual state. They are, if cared for, at that age, generally speaking, more in earnest about the things of God, than when younger. This has been my experience during the past 27 years though God has made numberless exceptions during the last three years, while His Holy Spirit has been so mightily at work; and we ourselves have had very many children brought to the knowledge of the Lord, before they were 14 years old.—Because, then, girls are the weaker sex; and are still more exposed than boys to utter ruin if neglected; and we can easily keep them till they are 18 or 19 years of age; I was led more especially to care for them. But now, having to a considerable extent, by the help of God, been enabled to provide for them, I was led to consider whether something more might not be done for boys also, to prevent, if possible, the necessity of refusing the boys of a family, when the girls could be received. I do not mean to say that the whole of the intended enlargement is for boys, yet a part at least, should be appropriated to them. Though, then, my mind has been, and is still led more particularly to care for girls, yet the desire to provide for boys also, to a greater extent than hitherto, was that which, in the first instance, particularly led my mind to this further enlargement.

3, The third reason, which has led me to this enlargement, is, the entirely inadequate accommodation in the Orphan Institutions already in existence in the United Kingdom. If they were multiplied many times, yet would there be an abundance of destitute Orphans to fill them. But even if there were room in them, which is not the case, still, the existing rules of admission by votes, which are in use in most of them, make it difficult, if not impossible, for the poorest and most destitute persons, to avail themselves of them. In referring to the practice of admission by votes, I do not blame any one; for I have reason to believe that many, who use this practice, wish it were otherwise; but I mention it simply as an existing fact. Thousands of votes, sometimes even many thousands, are required, in order that the candidate be successful. But the really poor and destitute have neither time, money, ability nor influence, to set about canvassing for votes; and therefore, with rare exceptions, they derive no benefit from such Institutions. Some time since I had an application for some Orphans, whose mother, a widow, in attempting to obtain votes for one of her fatherless children, was actually so worn out, that one day she came home, over-fatigued by canvassing for votes, sat down and died. I repeat it, I blame no one, yet I would humbly but solemnly entreat presidents, vice-presidents, and committees of such Institutions, to consider in the fear of God, whether it is right to impose such overwhelming work, and such heavy expense on the poor applicants, and whether it is not more Christ-like to bestow the bounty, which is to be bestowed, in a more easy way. I do not know whether it may please God to use this feeble word of suggestion, or not; but this I must say, I do feel myself called upon, to the utmost of my power, to make an easy way for the admission of poor destitute Orphans into an Orphan Establishment; and this, as well as the want of room in the already existing Orphan Institutions, has led me to contemplate this further enlargement by s

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