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afford more confolation than what he now feels. He fays that he wishes he could write; he has fufficient matter for an endless epiftle. goodness to this poor man has provoked fome to jealousy; nor can I say that I am altogether without heat from this flame; for, although I know it is better than life itfelf to have a good hope through grace, yet I want alfo to be favoured with the fulnefs of that love that cafteth out all fear. For, let me be favoured with what encouragement I may while hearing, I cannot retain it. I remember, two years fince, you told me to watch the good hand of God, for you faid you had no doubt but I fhould foon hear of fome poor fouls to whom the word would be made a bleffing. Laft Laft year Mrs. Etches escaped the dismal regions, and Mrs. Few found the door of hope. And this year this poor man has been favoured with a fweet found from the jubilee trumpet. The former I rejoiced at; nor could I refrain from tears at hearing the latter: but I will leave you to judge of my feelings, when the contefied prize of the bofom is poffeffed by another, which is what I have so long and fo earneftly fought. But in this I fail not: I always beg of God to let his word run and be glorified whenever you come down among us. But can I be wrong if I covet earnestly the best gifts for my own foul?
Adieu, my ever dear, my valuable, and ever bleffed friend: accept my moft unfeigned and moft fervent love yourself; tender the fame to my dear Lady S-; and, with kind remembrance to all friends at Cricklewood, conclude me, in the best of bonds, ever
Yours most affectionately,
Downham, Aug. 7, 1800,
MRS. CHARLES MARTIN,
Little Downham, Isle of Ely.
MARY's artless and fimple account of the poor man's deliverance came fafe to hand, and it is a moft humbling and felf-abafing confideration to me, being a true copy of a living epiftle, and a fweet exhibition of the unparalleled condefcenfion and humiliation of God, in fetting the broad feal of heaven to the commiffion of the most defpicable and the most abhorred of all ambaffadors; but God, knowing that I am much hated, hath therefore given me another fon.
And if a multitude of various looks can fpeak, and countenances can proclaim, and if I have any fkill in reading the rifings and fallings, the goings and comings, the approbation and then the fear, the rifings in hope and finking in dread, the fhining with oil and the weepings of love: I fay, if I can read thefe inward motions by the countenance, which is a true index of the heart, you will, cre long, acquaint me with the birth of another fon, unless he be one that comes from fome difiant place. It is a poor young man that I allude to, a face that I have often feen in the barn; both his ears were moft affuredly unftopped, and he heard the voice of the charmer, and moved
in concert with it; his countenance and my mouth kept pace and, footed it together, until the damping conclufion of I add no more' put a ftop to the dance; it was fo confpicuous, that I could but observe it, and he was too much loft in amazement to think of concealing. I mentioned the circumstance to you and Mr. M. afterwards, though neither of you could inform mę who he is; but we shall not lofe him in the crowd, for, when the voice of pardon fays to the prifoner, 'Go forth,' then they that fit in darkness must fhew themselves, Ifaiah xlix. 9. He muft appear, for all fuch fhall return and give glory to God, if nineteen hypocrites depart without it.
I was not a little furprised, when we first walked together in the garden, at the poor mant you speak of; both his words and his countenance expreffed a moft hearty welcome, and his hand the most cordial reception; fuch falutations and embraces are seldom lavished away upon the offfcouring of the earth. I expect no lefs, either by word or look, than to be confidered and received as an enemy, a deceiver, a troubler of Ifrael, or as a fpy upon the nakednefs of the land. But, as every good work proclaims the workman, fo a man's gift, especially the gift of the Holy Spirit, makes room for him. If the word is a hammer, it breaks the rock; if a fire, it diffolves the mountains; if a candle, it fearches Jerufalem; if a voic: of thunder, it alarms the fecure; and, if as the
piercings of a fword, entrances and inroads into the heart and confcience are made. "A wife man," faith the proverb, "fcaleth the city of the mighty, and cafteth down the ftrength of the confidence thereof," for whenever the word enters the power of the Spirit is clearly manifefted, and a full proof of the miniftry is made; and convinced fouls dare not hate, though they cannot love; and, if they cannot approve, they dare not reproach; for our call, commiffion, and authority, are all manifefted and eftablished, even in their own confidence as well as in their own confcience; for fuch believe and tremble, feel and are affrighted.
But nothing makes us fo welcome to the most diftant fraternity of Jeffe, as the horn of unction, when we are sent to pray over those who are fick of fin and of felf, and to anoint them with fresh oil in the name of the Lord. And it appears, by the man's cordial reception of me at my coming, that the Comforter had fhewed him beforchand things to come, though his understanding might be unfruitful upon this head; because he gladly received the fpy, when joy and peace foon followed; for there is no beauty in our feet upon the mountains until the oil of joy anoints the eyes of the fpectators; and even this is but a faint difcovery of the glory of his image who is the only begotten. of the Father, full of grace and truth.
The poor man is a true copy of the power of the gospel, and an excellent portrait of its fim