The meeting of our Missionary Union was with the High St. church.
In one article of the constitution of this Society, its object is defined to be "the collection of money for missionary purposes and the cultivation of a missionary spirit among its members." I think the former will be in direct ratio to the latter, that, other things being equal christian work, whether it be giving or doing, will be in proportion to the largeness of our faith & the intensity of our love. Let us then make it our aim in all these meetings to bring our hearts into closer sympathy with the divine work of saving a perishing world. Let us come to him, anxious to get new proof s that our holy religion is of God, and that it is the great need of the world & thus to get new incentives to christian effort & prayer.
I have thought we might draw from the life of that devoted missionary of almost 2,000 years ago (St. Paul) some important lessons to help us in our efforts to promote in ourselves a missionary spirit, and have selected from his Epistle to read this p.m. his words of salutation, showing, I think this one thing- his belief in a divine call to work for Christ.
Gal:1:1. Paul an apostle (not of men neither by men, but by Jesus
Christ & God the Father, who raised him from the dead.) Grace be to
you & peace from God the Father & from our Lord Jesus Christ, who
gave himself for our sins that he might deliver us from this present evil
world according to the will of God, & our Father.
Eph.1:1. Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God.
l.Tim.l:l Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ our hope.
Titus 1:1. Paul a servant of God an apostle of Jesus Christ.
2.Tim.1:1. Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God.
I.Cor.1:1. Paul called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ, through the will of God.
II.Cor.1:1. Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God.
Col.1:1. Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God.
Paul seems to have believed thoroughly that he had been called of
God. His convictions sink way below the surface. There is no indefiniteness
in his language. He does not say twenty or thirty years ago I thought I
was called of God. I do not feel quite so sure of it now: oh, no, not a
shadow of a doubt, all these years, has dimmed his faith in that call.
Bishop Simpson in an address last winter, to the Theological students of Yale Sem. says "The true minister in the present, as in the apostolic age, is called by the Lord Jesus Christ to his office." But does it follow that only apostles and ministers are called of God to work for him? Has not every true christian just as truly been called to work for Christ in his sphere, as has the true minister in his wider sphere? I wish we could realise that to be a christian, in our day as in Paul's is to be a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, and that to be a servant in God's household means as it does in ours, not ease- idleness - self - but devotion to the interests of another. That to be a child in God's family, implies as it does in all well regulated earthly homes, loving obedience.
I sometimes think we excuse ourselves from work because we cannot
do great things. In the natural world the mountains are fewer than the
hills and the mighty rivers than the tiny streams. God has given to the
church but one Paul and to American Board but one Dea. Otis with his munificent
bequest of more than half a million of dollars, but he does not despise
our lesser gifts nor our humble services