« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
It was the first distant lightning-flash, Luther to buckle on his spiritual armour, the premonitor of the coming storm. The and seize David's sling and the sword of the Reformer was thus prepared for his work. Lord, which meaneth ardent prayer and
the pure word of God; and relying for
protection on his doctor's degree and his ILLUSTRATION IN FOUR COMPARTMENTS.* [Below, Luther in the confessional refuses absolu: Tetzel and his indulgences, teaching boldly
oath, he, in the name of God, assailed the left, Tetzel selling his ware and burning Luther's that they were dangerous delusions." propositions, (theses.) In the center, Luther affixes his ninety-five propositions to the church-door. To The fearless Tetzel had pushed rhetoric the right, the students of Wittemberg burn Tetzel's reply.]
to the extremest limits of amplification. UNPRETENDINGLY began the greatest work Boldly heaping pious lie on lie, he went of modern times by a German monk's af- into an enumeration of all the evils cured fixing his ninety-five theses to the church by this panacea, and, not contenting himdoor at Wittemberg. But this unpretend-self with known sins, invented crimes, deing beginning became soon the awakening which no one had ever heard before ; and
vised strange, unheard-of wickednesses, of cry to all Christianity. “ By Tetzel's, the seller of indulgences,
when he saw his auditory struck with hor. audacious talk and abuse, he caused our
ror, coolly added, “Well, the instant mon
ey rattles in the pope's coffers, all will be This engraving was inserted as a kind of
expiated !" frontispiece at the commencement of the series.
Luther asserts that at this time he hard-(See Number.)
ly knew what indulgences were; but when
he saw a prospectus of them, proudly dis The artist represents in his sketch the playing the name and guarantee of the church-doors at Wittemberg as symbolical archbishop of Mentz, whom the pope had of the great gate of the universal Christappointed to superintend the sale of indul- ian Church, at which Luther knocks warngences in Germany, he was seized with ingly and admonishingly with his proposiindignation. A mere speculative problem tions. Above his head we see the swan would never have brought him into con- rising from the flames of the stake on tact with his ecclesiastical superiors; but which Huss suffered.
The groups on this was a question of good sense and each side, the flames lighted by Tetzel morality. As doctor of theology, and an and by the Wittemberg students, indicate influential professor of the university of the warfare, the hidden beginning of which Wittemberg which the Elector had just is shown in the confessional of Luther. founded, as provincial vicar of the Austin friars, and the vicar-general's substitute in the pastoral charge and visitation of Misnia and Thuringia, he, no doubt, Luther appears before the pope's legate, thought himself more responsible than Cardinal Cajetan, at Augsburg, to defend any one else for the safeguard of the his doctrine. Although kneeling reverSaxon faith. His conscience was aroused. ently, according to custom, he courageousHe ran a great risk in speaking ; but, if ly refuses to recant as he is ordered. he held his tongue, he believed his dam Angered by the obstinate German, the nation certain.
Italian flings the written defense at his feet,
LUTHER BEFORE CAJETAN.
saying wrathfully: “ Appear not again be- | which Cajetan has thrown down, while fore mine eyes, unless thou recant.” his friend Staupitz, evidently frightened
“ Because he sat there representing the at the wrath of the Church dignitary, tries pope," are Luther's own words, “he in- to pacify both. (See engraving on precedsisted that I should submit and agree to ing page.) In the above picture we see all he said ; while, on the contrary, all Luther, according to the advice of his that I said against it was contemned and friends, and assisted by Staupitz and laughed at, although I quoted the Scrip- Councilor Langemantel, leaving Augsburg tures ; in short, his fatherly love went no at night through a small portal : “ Staupitz further than that I must suffer violence or had procured me a horse, and sent an old recant, for he declared he would not dis- horseman with me who was acquainted pute with me."
with the road. I hastened away, withThe artist has sought to depict the mo out breeches, boots, spurs, or sword, and ment in which Luther picks up the paper | reached Wittemberg.
was about the year 1783 that the ment in a fixed abode had not made him
prime of manhood, a zealous convert of often said that if he were ever settled, he Whitefield, and, like many other good would give some poor child a common men of the same class in those days, an education. Being settled with an income itinerant preacher, added to his “circuit” from his little church of £30 per annum, the little village of Tisbury, in Wiltshire, and married to a lady whose fortune England. Mr. Winter was a benevolent brought in £25, the competence of £55 man, and fond of youth. At that time, yearly encouraged him to carry the desire indeed, he was settled in the town of Marl- of his heart into execution; and he charborough, and his circuit, unlike those di- itably took charge of the child of his deavisions of the country bearing the same con, a poor man-taught the child to dename under Wesley, was formed by him- cipher the alphabet, and persevered until self alone. He resided permanently at he was made fit for business. Attracted the central station, and employed pupils by the fatherly solicitude of Mr. Winter of his own for supplying the village pul- toward this child, one or two other perpits, if pulpits they were. In the days of sons in inferior circumstances confided his itinerancy, more properly so called, their children to his care; and on these when his habits were more fully those of beginnings rose the Academy at Marlboa Methodist, and his ordination and settle- | rough. Mr. Winter could not be expected
to impart a finished education, inasmuch removal from the rude society of his as he was originally but a servant man, father's fellow-workmen, it was currently and quite untaught; but partly under the related in Tisbury that he had set himself care of Whitefield, and yet more by dint against their evil habit of profane swearof self-discipline, he had acquired a tole- ing, and used to lecture them roundly rable amount of rudimentary and general thereupon, until people looked upon him knowledge. But his piety, benevolence, as a young Methodist, and the rougher and unaffected earnestness in well-doing, sort would make merry with him about made him an invaluable teacher of truths his “ sarments." And this plainly enough more precious than those of literature and shows that before he forsook the hod for science, and a foster-father to every youth the lexicon, his mind and life were habitthat came under his care.
ually under the power of religion. There Among Mr. Winter's constant hearers is no record as yet extant of the time or in Tisbury, were a quarryman and stone- manner when he first made
declaramason named Jay, his wife, and children. tion of his détermination to forsake the One of these children, William, a boy of follies of the world: but there is this eviabout fourteen when the congregation was dence, that he did rise above their influfirst collected, and working with his father ence; and it is but reasonable to regard in the capacity of mason's laborer, used to him as a living fruit of Mr. Winter's gralisten with fixed attention to the plain, tuitous and self-denying toil as a village but affectionate discourse of good Cor- preacher. Let village preachers take nelius Winter; and, as if drawn by the heart, then, and venture to hope that their force of reverential admiration, got into labors, humble as they are, may draw forth the habit of taking a seat just at the foot other brilliant ornaments of humanity, to' of the pulpit stairs, where he could be shine in the great world, and give the first near the preacher as he came in and went impulse to nascent luminaries, whose virout. The good-natured smile of this boy tues shall enlighten other generations. won the attention of Mr. Winter, and as With a sort of fatherly pride, Mr. Winhis mind rapidly unfolded, and his heart ter entered on the charge of his rustic became affected by what he heard, an air pupil, and already showed him to his of intelligence more keen than appeared friends, as if he had set it down for cerin any of the rustic audience, induced him tain that he was the rudiment of a great to notice him, speak to him, ascertain his Introducing him to a family, a name, and seek information concerning member of which afterward became one the occupation and character of his pa- of Mr. Jay's first and most devoted dearents, and his own conduct. His “ cons in Bath, he is recorded to have laid was upon him more immediately than his hand upon his head, and said, “ There upon any other in the congregation ; his is more under this cap than you think for.” heart was unaccountably knit to him." Strong was the attachment of Mr. Jay “Why do you come here so constantly ?" to his patron. The first volume that he said he one day to the lad. “I do n't ever wrote was a collection of letters, and know, sir, but I like to come,” was the a short memoir of his life, of which the reply.
first edition bears date April 1, 1808, and William Jay entered the hospitable contains some very characteristic sendwelling of this man of God, wearing his tences. “I know not,” he says, “ whether working dress and iron-soled boots, rich there has been a wakeful hour since his with depositions of mortar, gathered dur- | death, (nearly eleven weeks before,) in ing many a long day's hard work, and which I have not thought of the deceased, then the old coat and ponderous boots or that I have written a page concerning were not only exchanged for attire such as him without tears; for tears have been he probably had worn on Sundays, but the my meat." But he also says, “I have very boots and coat were laid up by his labored with pleasure, and rejoice in the patron and Mrs. Winter, to be memorials enterprise, from a persuasion that what I of his original vocation ; or, as one might have written from the warmest affection say, of the rock whence he was hewed, and the highest regard, will be ratified by and the quarry where he had wrought. the public voice ; and that I am doing And this was not the only remembrance good to others while I have an opportunity of his humble beginning. Long after his to indulge my own feelings, and to ao
knowledge the obligations to my dear and nor accuracy; they only yearned after honored friend and benefactor, which I some knowledge of those cardinal verities shall never be able to discharge. To him which began to be dispersed over the land, I owe all my respectability in life, and all on the wings of rumor, and crowded my opportunities of public usefulness.” around any one, man or boy, whom they
And, on the other hand, Mr. Winter thought able to bring them more exact inbears honorable testimony to the charac- telligence. But Mr. Jay's own account ter and deportment of the youthful inmate of this part of his life is better than any of his family, telling him in one of his second-hand representation of it. letters, that “to all that was amiable and “In some of these villages I have kind in his dear friend, under God,” that preached down many a live-long Sabbath, family was in part indebted for their hap- in the homely cottage, on the green bepiness. He contributed his quota to it, fore the door, or in some open place in the and had his share in return. “O blessed road, or in a field hard by. How often villages !” exclaimed the good old pastor have I wished to revisit all these hamlets! in a rapture of grateful recollection, “0 But, alas ! how few should I now find blessed villages which were favored with alive, and who would be able to rememyour ministerial abilities! O highly fa- ber—what I was always then called the vored Marlborough, whose streets were boy preacher. Many of these places we then occasionally thronged with them who supplied on week-day evenings, as well as went to and from the house of God, and on the Sabbath, as we could afford time had their hearts filled with joy and glad- and assistance. To many of them we ness! I bless the Lord for all he has walked on foot; from some of them we since done for you and by you.” The returned, for the want of accommodation, discipline of the house was easy ; there the same evening, whatever was the weawas little or no academical formality ; in- ther; and from none of them received stead of lectures were familiar conversa we the least remuneration. We seldom tions and “ breakfast and tea readings,” encountered persecution. This depends and young Mr. Jay took his full share of very much always on the preacher; and village preaching, going into the highways our prudent tutor taught us not to rail and and hedges, in good old style, to compel abuse, but simply to preach the truth, and the attention of the ignorant and ungodly. to avoid the offense of folly, when we The exigencies of those times, the extra- could not avoid the offense of the cross. ordinary religious excitement that pre- I shall never forget with what eagerness vailed in almost all parts of the country, and feeling these villagers received the the laxity, too, of ecclesiastical discipline, words of life. The common people heard both in the Established Church and out of us gladly, and the poor had the gospel it, with a powerful reaction against forms preached unto them; not by the poor and rules which had superseded piety in- man's Church,' but by those who then supstead of guarding and guiding it, justified plied their lack of service." or suffered many proceedings which could But we must now follow him into more not be often repeated with advantage, in public life. He was born, it must be such days as ours, and thus only can we noted, on the first day of May, 1769. account for the haste with which this Counting from the date to the time when young man was sent out to preach before Mr. Winter broke up his establishment at he was sixteen years of age. Before he Marlborough, and removed to Painswick, was twenty-one, he had preached nearly where he was welcomed on the second one thousand sermons. Mr. Jay himself, day of August, 1788, we should say that in after-life, would not probably have ex Mr. Jay must have been a little over his posed a youth to so severe an incentive to nineteenth year when he entered on the vanity ; but he was under a tutor whose duties of a Christian pastor. Gladly authority he felt bound not to dispute, and would he have sheltered himself from so the state of the villages around was truly heavy a responsibility, and avoided the deplorable. Compassionating the multi- assumption of that character for a year tudes who were perishing for lack of or two longer, for although he had been knowledge,” that venerable tutor sent his a boy preacher,” he was not self-confistudents to address them early. The dent. It was only as a youth that he, in rude rustics, too, required neither depth common with others, perhaps not much