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A Narrative of Some of the Lord's Dealings with Ge

Tholuck received a letter from the Continental Society


When

I came home, however, these few words were like fire within me. The next morning I felt all desire for going to Bucharest gone, which appeared to me very wrong and fleshly, and I therefore entreated the Lord, to restore to me the former desire for labouring on that missionary station. He graciously did so almost immediately. My earnestness in studying Hebrew, and my peculiar love for it, however, continued. About this time I had an offer of becoming tutor to the sons of a pious Gentleman of title, which I did not accept on account of my purpose of going to Bucharest, and if that should come to nothing, on account of my desire of being a missionary to the Jews.

About ten days after, Dr. Tholuck received a letter from the Continental Society, stating, that, on account of the war between the Turks and Russians, it appeared well to the committee, for the time being to give up the thought of sending a minister to Bucharest, as it was the seat of war between the two armies. Dr. Tholuck then asked me again, what I now thought about being a missionary to the Jews. My reply was, that I could not then give an answer, but that I would let him know, after I had prayerfully considered the matter. After prayer and consideration, and consulting with experienced brethren, in order that they might probe my heart as to my motives, I came to this conclusion, that, though I could not say with certainty it was the will of God that I should be a missionary to the

Jews, yet, that I ought to offer myself to the committee, leaving it with the Lord to do with me afterwards, as it might seem good in His sight. Accordingly Dr. Tholuck wrote, about the beginning of December, 1827, to the committee in London.

At Christmas I spent a few days at Belleben, a village about fifteen miles from Halle, where I had been once or twice before, both for the sake of refreshing the few brethren living there, and also of having my own spirit refreshed by their love. One evening, when I was expounding the Scriptures to them, an unconverted young man happened to be present, and it pleased the Lord to touch his heart, so that he was brought to the knowledge of the truth.

In the beginning of the year 1828 there was a new workhouse established at Halle, into which persons of bad character were put for a time, and made to work. Being disposed to benefit unbelievers, I heartily desired to have permission statedly to preach the word of truth to them while I stayed at Halle, particularly as I understood that one of the lecturers of divinity in the university, who was a Socinian, had applied for this living. I wrote to the magistrates of the city, and offered to preach to those criminals gratuitously, hoping that in this way there would be less objection to my doing so. The reply was, that Dr.--had applied for this living, and that it had been laid before the provincial government for consideration, but that they would be glad if I would preach in the workhouse till the matter was decided. The decision did not come for some time, and I had thus an opportunity of preaching twice every Lord's day, and once or twice on the week evenings; and besides this I took the criminals one by one into a room, to converse with them about their souls. Thus the Lord condescended to give to one so unworthy, so ignorant, so weak in grace, and so young in the faith and in years, a most important field of labour. However, it was well, that even under these circumstances I should have laboured there; for humanly speaking, had I not been there, they would have had either no instruction at all, or a Socinian, or an unenlightened preacher would have preached to them. And besides this, I had at least some qualification for ministering there; for I knew the state of those poor sinners, having been myself formerly, in all probability, a great deal worse than most of them, and my simplicity and plainness of speech they would not have found in every minister. After some months the matter was decided, the Socinian lecturer of divinity, Dr. --, was appointed to the living, and I had to discontinue my labours.


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