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In this way it wrought for my good, my Father's glory, and if not for the welfare of men's souls, it will be their own fault-be their blood upon them; be my hands clean.
In all these complex trials the blessed Lord was with me. 1 grew in the divine and holy life ; Christ dwelled in me the hope of glory, and I lived and moved in him ; in short, I was emphatically the temple of the mystic Trinity-Father, Son and Holy Spirit, according to St. John, 14th chapter.
Two years were fully passed in confinement, as were also with Joseph and St. Paul-my blessed Father arose in his majesty to confound all hell and darkness; the devil and all his legions; spiritual and in the flesh, and with his Omnipotent Arm achieved my deliverance, and I came forth from the furnace as go!d seven times refined. Glory be to his great name, who is perfect in glory and holiness, and saith, “ when thou cometh into trouble, call upon me and I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me," which I know I have done, am doing, and desire to do to the end, so that, through my blessed Savionr, Jesus Christ, I may also reign with Him in all joy, glory, happiness, felicity and bliss, for ever and ever.
Incomprehensible Deity, thou art so highly exalted above puny men, thy throne in the heavens is so far above the earth, thy footstool, that thy ways are altogether past finding out; but this we know, that thy promises are all yea and amen to the believer in Jesus. O enable me ever to adore thy long suffering mercy, to me, and to praise and bless thy ever blessed and holy name in time, and at thy right hand in eternity, through Jesus Christ my beloved Lord and Saviour. Amen.
Yes, the Lord's ways are above our ways, and his thoughts far, far above our thoughts; therefore, as respects my two years confinement, it will be fully manifest at his second coming; which in his own words, "will be speedily.” Even so come, Lord Jesus. Amen.
The object of my being thus lengthy is to edify my readers, to give some idea of the dealing of my Father with his annointed; to convince those, particularly, who deny his intercession and guardian care and government of the universe; and that if any of my readers should ever meet with similar trials not to despair, but call upon the same Lord, who is Almighty to save and deliver to the uttermost.
Wonderfully and divinely supported by my heavenly Father, I was enabled to embark from London, in March, 1836, who upheld me by his Arm of Righteousness and Almighty power, by grace through faith in Jesus Christ our Lord. Nothing very particular occurred during the voyage. had some gales and much head wind, even for weeks; one morning, after some weeks of this untoward weather, and having been out about seven weeks already, as I came on deck one of the passengers entered into conversation with me, during which he informed me that the provision was be. coming scarce on board, and if the wind should continue ahead, he knew not what might be the consequence. I reflected a moment, then descended to my berth, to implore Him with whom are the issues of life and death, and who holds the reins of the winds in his fist, and can change them in the twinkling of an eye, and so he did; for I was but a few minutes on my knees praying for the same, when I heard them tacking about and putting the ship in nearly a direct course for our harbor; when I came on deck the wind was nearly aft, and the same breeze drove us into New York nearly two weeks after. My Father is still a prayer hearing and answering God, if approached in uprightness; with full purpose of heart to forsake evil and follow after that which is good; know ye this ye double-ininded who desire to serve two masters, your prayer is an abomination, and therefore, not answered, and ye remain unconverted and in your sins. Above all, God delights to hear his saints pray and to answer their prayers, for his honor dwelleth with them, and he is glorified in them; therefore let us pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; bless his name and sing his praise; Hallelujah, praise the Lord.
I expected that as soon as I landed on the American shore I should be free from persecution; but alas! I found it far otherwise, the powers of darkness pervading all classes, and I soon found that the land was mourning for the abomination thereof; and alas ! thought I, for my country; the just judgments of the Most High are pressing thee sore. In traveling along I discovered that the fields were almost barren as the road; my heart was heavy, mourned within me, and groan. ed with the earth. I thought of Noah's time, and of Sodom and Gomorrah, and other mighty nations, which prosperity, fulness of bread, and success in arms, had inflated so that they became lifted up and went a whoring after their own inventions, neither fearing nor acknowledging the sovereignty of Jehovah, nor seeking to honor him, but rather by their filthy actions to dishonor him, and that continually; at last God to humble them brought them even low as hell, by an utter extermination, to wit: the plains of Sodom and Gomorrah, &c.
When abroad I would often think if I once got back to my brother, I would also find a brother in spirit and in truth and in the spirit of Christ. But after landing I began to doubt of it, and when I got there I found him contrary; his hand being against me; not having my Lord and Master, Christ's mark on his forehead, but the adversary's, consequently there was a great gulph between us, and which I am sorry to think remains unto this day; and so it is with all my relations and acquaintances, and strangers among whom I have sojourned since; but yet notwithstanding the Lord may have some, beside myself, whose hands are free from the blood of all men, either by persecution or otherwise, and who abstain from this levelling abomination and wickedness, upon which I have enlarged in the following discourses.
Having lived since my return in May, 1836, within four or
five miles of this place, where I pursued my studies as historical painter, and occasionally composing hymns, and where I wrote the first part of my poem, the “Messiah,” up to verse 77. Here I met with many trials and bufferings from Satan, and persecutions from his children, but my God and Saviour, my brother Jesus was constantly with me, and through him I triumphed over them all, and know that I shall endure unto the end and inherit all things, and with the Holy Angels and the redeemed from the earth, enjoy the Eternal Father everlastingly.
Last March I came to this place, (Chambersburg,) and have met with considerable success, which enabled me to publish during the summer the “ Messiah,” for the welfare of my fellow beings, particularly their immortal soul's salvation; which work has been welcomed and highly extolled, by men of judgment, for which 1 feel thankful, as it may draw the public to spend a trifle to possess it, and the amount of good it may be the means, under God, of doing, will be made manifest some future day; in the meantime Glory be to Jesus the King of Glory. The subject, the “Messiah,” is the most elevated and sublime that could be sung, and in my humble opinion, the language is high, holy, and inspired; truly evangelical, and in keeping; harmonizing in every respect to it. I have said before I published, and am still of the same opinion, that parts of it have never to my knowledge, been surpassed, if equalled; but glory to whom glory belongs, and may his blessing descend upon the readers thereof for the salvation of their souls.
The painting of our blessed Saviour's appearance to his disciples while they were praying in an upper room, the doors being shut too, when and where he convinced unbelieving Thomas; St. John's gospel 20th chapter. It is a heavenborn production; a superhuman serenity pervades the whole, like the calm of the ocean after a breeze, its tiny waves skipping and rejoicing; thus the terror of the disciples has subsided, and placidness taken its place with joy and rejoicing in
the heart of every one. The Saviour is an admirable figure, full six feet high, and well proportioned; his countenance is sweet, divinely benign, and persuasive ; his eyes are cast upon St. Thomas, who is kneeling before him, recovering from his weakness and confusion, and exclaiming “ My Lord and my God.” . The light which emanates from the Saviour's countenance is well managed, partly shading some of the hindermost figures. The draperies are ample and flowing; every part is in keeping and aids to combine the subject and form a sweet and pleasing effect, such as to refresh and edify the soul, and calın a ruffled and angry temper by behold
This subject was selected during the few last months of my confinement, and began on a convass of about 14 by 11 inches, which I brought from London here, and have now enlarged it to the size of life on a suitable canvass, and more to my satisfaction, and I trust to the benefit of mankind. It must be seen in a proper room and light to be fully appreciated. Another began since; Mary Magdalene, Joanną, and Mary the mother of James, with other women, seeking the Saviour at the sepulchre. They went in and found him not, and after coming out two Angels stood by them, informing them that he had risen, &c. St. Luke, 24th chapter. Fig. ures, seven women and two Angels, rather above the size of life; it remains unfinished as yet. Another is a sweet picture of the Saviour, with Cleopas on one side and another disciple on the other, progressing towards Emmaus; they have just ascended to the top of a hill; the sun near sinking behind the distant mountains, shines full in their faces and casts long shadows down the hill from their bodies, and from trees. A luxuriant and wide extended valley lays before them, bounded by hills on one side, interspersed by buildings and vineyards. The village of Emmaus lies a little to the right, about a mile ahead; with towering mountains behind, and extended country to the left for miles farther; the fields