« PreviousContinue »
overturn religion, the council directed them to inform it of the abuses which they observed, but not to exclaim against them from the pulpit in that manner.
12th. They reply, that it is a case of conscience, and that this is to deprive their ministry of its liberty.
Oct. 15th.-Farel has represented how much Calvin, Viret, and he have always been attached to the interests of this city; and has entreated the council to look upon Viret the same as formerly, and to shew the same esteem and regard as formerly for Calvin, whose merit was so exalted that there was not another man on earth who had opposed antichrist with so great success from Jesus Christ, as he; and that he perceived, with grief, that they did not pay the deference to this servant of God which was due to him.
18th.-J. Calvin having been summoned before the council to answer for his conduct, he was told that he must, another time, attend better to his duty towards the magistrate. William Farel, who was present at this examination, thought that the council paid but little respect for the character and merit of Calvin, who was so much distinguished, that it might justly be said, no man equalled him in learning; that they should not be so very scrupulous as to what he might have said, since he had reproved with much boldness the greatest of men, such as Luther, Melancthon, &c.; and that they should not so easily credit what a mob of insignificant people, supporters of an ale-house, might say against so great a man: upon which it was resolved, that thanks should be given to the said Farel.
Jan. 5th.-M. Calvin makes a present of a copy of his Commentaries, with a fine preface addressed to the magistracy.
Feb. 27th.-Some persons having thought it wrong that the ministers should he present at the Geneva council, since the priests did not attend it before the Reformation, Calvin answered, that the former feel themselves bound by their oath as citizens; and that the comparison is not just, since the latter acknowledge no temporal authority.
Nov. 13th.-Calvin and his colleagues have represented that they have heard, with sorrow, that some young persons had urged a complaint against the minister, William Farel, which could not but bring dishonour and great scandal upon the church. Those who brought forward this complaint having been sent for, as well as Farel, there was much noise on both sides; after
which Farel declared that he did not intend to blame the community; that he has for Geneva a sincere affection. This so much affected those who were present (many of the people having entered the councilchamber), and in particular those who had complained of the said Farel, that they all considered Farel as a faithful minister of the holy Gospel, and for their spiritual father upon which the council decreed that they should all shake him by the hand, and that there should be a feast of reconciliation.
Jan. 31st.-All the lesser council, the magistrates, M. Calvin, and many of the chief men of the city dinent together, to confirm the peace made yesterday; and it is decided that if any one should break it, all the others shall join against him.
July 19th.-The physician, Beljaquet, is ordered to examine a book which Calvin wished to have printed. 1555.
Nov. 7th. It has been determined to consult able men on the business of the alliance, and to summon before the lesser council, Calvin, Colladon, and Chevalier, for this purpose.
Dec. 23. The report of the lords, Bonne, Curtet, De l'Arche, and Roset, deputies to Berne, for the fellow-citizenship, is, that this last was the only one who could express himself in German with facility, and that they had been treated with much civility in the towns of the Pays de Vaud. The council judged it right to thank these said deputies, and to communicate the whole to Messrs. Calvin, Colladon, and Chevalier.
May 20th.-Mr.W. Farel is treated, and his expenses defrayed, because he is the first who preached the Gospel to us, and because he has suffered much in this city; and the ministers are consulted, to know whether it would be right to retain him here, and to give him a pension, that we may not be accused of ingratitude.
July 3d.-A minister is granted to the Duchess of Ferrara, on condition that it shall be neither M. Calvin nor M. de Beza.
21st. The King of Navarre asks
for these two pastors for the conference of Poissi.
Sept. 11th.-Viret having obtained leave of absence, on account of his health, the council granted him, with great reluctance, on account of the risk which he may incur, of being insulted by the enemies of religion, and because many learned men having already quitted us, our town will in the end be destitute of able men.
Nov. 11th.-M. Beza's salary was given to his wife; and, although absent, he is offered every thing which he may need.
Dec. 22d.-The Prince de Condé, the Queen of Navarre, and the Admiral de Chatillon, have entreated the council to allow them to detain M. de Beza three or four months longer, for the advancement of religion; which was granted them. M. de Beza shews an earnest desire to return, having nothing in the world so near his heart as this church.
30th. Viret was lent to the church of Paris; where it is hoped that he will have much success, and help to convert the parliament.
Sept. 21st.-M. de Beza being invited to France, not only as a minister, but as treasurer, the council and ministers were much embarrassed; considering, on the one hand, the need we have of so great a man, and the dangers which he might incur, and, on the other, the distressed state of the French church, and the consolation he might afford her, and the ill consequences of discouraging it by refusing it the aid of those who defend with so much bravery and firmness the cause of the Gospel, and bring upon ourselves just reproaches. At last, it was decided that we ought not to have so much at heart our own individual interest as the advancement of the glory of God; and it was left to Beza himself to decide which he would do.
May 7th-Many thanks and offers of service from all the French
Protestant noblemen, for the important services which Theodore Beza had tendered to them, as also to all the churches in the kingdom.
13th.-Viret thanked the council for having continued his salary to him during his absence, and expressed to it his great sorrow that the state of his health obliged him to go and pass the remainder of his days in a warmer climate; upon which it was decided to give him a kind dismissal, and to tell him that we feel grateful to him, that since God having made use of him to plant his Gospel in this town, he had served this church with so much edification and advantage, that both the public and private individuals felt under obligations to him, which would never be effaced from their memory; and it was resolved to provide him with every thing necessary, as well as Sp. de Beza, who has spent much on his journeys, and who would not say any thing if he were in the greatest difficulties.
Jan. 3d.-The secret committee to which M. Calvin was called, has agreed, that if we were to ask a garrison from any but the authorities of Berne, we should shew by this that we distrust them, from whom we are obliged to receive one in time of need: whereas, if we were to send for one from France, it would cost us a great deal; and it would seem as if this town were in a state of weakness, which would not do it credit.
March 10th. Decreed that every one should pray for the health of M. Calvin, who has been for some time indisposed, and even in danger of death.
13th-He refuses twenty-five crowns, which the council had sent to his brother, saying, that, not per forming his duties, his conscience would not allow him to receive his salary.
June 8th.-All the ministers and professors came to the council on account of the death of Calvin, and called to mind that that holy man
had made to them excellent exhortations to union, both among themselves and with the magistracy, and that this was the only way to prevent their feeling so sensibly the loss of this true servant of God. The council replied, that it regretted yery much this great man on whom God had bestowed such great gifts, and on whom he had impressed a character of so much dignity.
July 8th.-Resolved to purchase for the public library such of M. Calvin's books as M. de Beza shall think proper.
18th. The ministers are directed to select one of their number to attend the pestilential sick; with the exception of M. de Beza, on account of the need there is for his services, both in the church and the academy.
Feb. 25th.-Beza and Colladon have had their expenses paid, and have been received every where with respect and welcome on their journey to Berne, which they hope has not been in vain, and that God will bless their labours.
Sept. 20th.-M. de Beza keeping his bed for some days, Messrs. the syndics were sent to visit him.
Oct. 28th.-Resolved, upon the representation of Theodore de Beza, to remedy the disorder there is in the police, in the dearness of provisions, and the small manufactures, which cause many persons to quit this
(To be concluded next Number.)
INTERNATIONAL UNION OF CHRIS
Tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer.
THAT the true believer would comprehend every inhabitant of earth in his regards, and more particularly in his prayers, is plain in theory, and unquestionable in fact. Whatever, therefore, be the country, the language, the complexion, the peculiarities of man, his very name may be considered as his passport through the Christian world. The barriers of Heathenism, and Mohammedanism, and those of Judaism, also, may prevent personal communication with their respective votaries; but they will never stop the progress of that charity which would gladly cultivate it ever at "the cross of Christ." What, then, can stay the affections of his genuine disciples for those who are separated from them, even by the vast Atlantic?
These thoughts have arisen in my mind from a recent interview with two American Christian brethren, who had just alighted on our shores. Never till then had I beheld them, or even heard their names; and perhaps on this side of the grave I shall see their face no more. Yet such is the impression which their society has left upon my mind, that I would hope it may not be useless to communicate it to your readers; not for the sake of this particular instance, but of the general sentiments which it involves. First, I have been led to consider that intellectual resemblance which exists between man and man. Had my American brethren and myself been sitting, from the days of childhood, under the same teacher, studying the same subjects, engaged in the same task, and familiarly exchanging our several opinions and judgments, I doubt, if, generally speaking, our minds could have moved in more complete harmony
with each other. And, though I would shun the appearance of flattery, I must be allowed this passing observation; that on every topic which they discussed (especially on those relating to American statistics), they exhibited such intellect and information, as could not but command attention. But I must not lose sight of the inference (familiar as in truth it is) which so much occupies my thoughts; namely, that we all have one Maker; who has seen fit so to constitute the human mind, that all the varied individuals of our race have much in common with one another, in their views, their judgment, their conclusions, and in their modes of thought and expression.
Nor did we differ in our occasional references to the truths developed in the Bible. Here I had the happiness to find that we essentially spoke, and even thought, the same thing. My friends, both in conversation and in print, concur with their fellow-Christians in other lands, in viewing man in the sacred colouring of Scripture as the inheritor of Adam's guilt and depravity and ruin; and in setting forth Jesus as the crucified, the allsufficient, Saviour. Nor is the Divine Regenerator of man overlooked by our trans-atlantic brethren. The duty, the object, the success, of Christian missions have an especial share of their notice; while their affections evidently kindle, under the best and highest influence, on behalf of those millions of their countrymen who are yet unhappily ignorant of God and of his Christ. From the depths of my heart, I pray that the Lord may prosper these our companions in labour, in the Western world *.
Our respected correspondent refers us to a missionary sermon, lately published in London, by Mr. Richmond, of the Episcopal Church in the United States. We have so many valuable American publications, including numerous excellent missionary discourses, that it would be invidious to select any single discourse for peculiar eulogy; but Mr. CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 347.
I would next trace (and I trust in so doing I neither deceive nor magnify myself) a kindred tone of affection between the individuals now referred to, and the author of these few remarks. Not only did we meet each other with all that freedom and cordiality which it is the office of Christianity to inspire, but (such assuredly was my own impression) we had one common pulse of, at least, sincere love to our exalted Saviour. exalted Saviour. Accordingly, my spirit testifies that we had alike been taught by his Spirit to love one another. What passed in their bosoms I will not undertake to say. But I dare affirm, that in my own there was a strong sense of attachment to them as Christian brethren; a deep interest in their temporal, and still more in their spiritual welfare; and an indescribable feeling of regret that the circumstances of our respective lots would probably for bid in this world another personal communication. Here it was my consolation to look up to that country where each true Christian shall at length dwell with his Redeemer, and where "the communion of saints" shall be without interruption, without end.
And does not that congeniality of feelings which characterizes the true followers of Christ, whether resident in Great Britain or in America, lay us under a strong obligation to pray for the welfare of one another, and for the continuance of peace and good-will between the two countries? And I would bind it upon myself, and on all my fellow-countrymen, to pray to the God of peace, that no thirst for extended empire, no" love of money," no feelings of jealousy or rivalry, no political misconstruction of their respective views and measures, may ever again produce those hostilities which once
Richmond's, being published in London, will be easily accessible to our readers; and it contains some interesting and important statements and suggestions, relative to the Episcopal Church in the United States.-Editor.