fore us.


to that momentous object; but the present day, when religion-true, the popular motto of ships,

vital, soul-saving religion—were more

essential to the maintenance of estab. colonies, and commerce" is in lished government, and to the temporal general so grievously dissociated as well as the eternal happiness of from questions of religious obli- individuals, it is the commercial, gaingation, that it is not often we

seeking, self-absorbing period now besee statistics and price-currents “ We pause not to indicate the causes connected with loftier thoughts, which lead to that intense thirst for and more solemn calculations, wealth-to that unceasing activity of than those of finance, exchange, that unmitigated pressure of bodily toil

the mind for worldly advantages—to and merchandise. Either Mr.

- which leaves man no time for reflecMartin is a bold Christian man, tion, no leisure for abstraction from the or the appetite of those for whom harassing anxieties of daily life, no he designs his “ Commercial momentary reprieve from the miseries Maritime Journal” is considered gle for the maintenance of a position in

attendant on a protracted feverish strugby him to be much more healthy society, or for the diurnal bread necesthan we fear it was wont to be sary to family or individual existence. within living memory; seeing these results, and to entreat of all who

It is sufficient for our object to mark · that at the outset of a publication desire the permanence of the British of this character he dares to urge empire, to reflect that such a course of the duty—which he esteems to be civilization must have a rapid and fatal also sound policy—of endeavour.

termination. Unless religion be ing to promote Christianity, nay, action, the rise of prosperity in an in

abiding motive for every thought and "church establishments, "through- dividual or in a nation will but serve to out the British dependencies. measure the height of its fall; and riches The very name of religion in the

and honours will be but the gilding pages of a “ Colonial Magazine" the rottenness within the tomb.

which adorns the sepulchre, to conceal would heretofore have been ac- " It is one of the many blessings of counted, in some high commercial Christianity, that while softening and circles, folly, fanaticism, or worse;

alleviating the cares incident to life, it and to speak of extending church energies, and adds a tenfold vigour to

gives a quickening impulse to man's establishments to them, would

every enterprise which has for its main have as dreadfully alarmed the object the welfare of our fellow-creatures. nerves or excited the bile of not And now, when burdened with distress a few West Indian planters, and

at home, and seeking relief by planting

distant colonies abroad, can we expect their London consignees—to say a favourable issue to our efforts, hownothing of English gentlemen in ever herculean, unless a religious prinIndia or Leadenhall Street- ciple pervade our minds and guide our doubtless will those of Mr. Hume,

counsels ?

Religion is far more necessary for when he bethinks him of the

the maintenance of mankind in society perils which will menace the than any form of government: the latter, Canadas "and Australia, should

devoid of religion, would be mainly efMr. Martin's lucubrations find

fective by brute force, and by the terror

which its punishments inspired; the their way thither.

former moulds the human being into a As our notions do not coincide social creature, identifies his interests with those of Mr. Hume in this

with those of others around him, and and many other matters, we will

by consentaneousness of thought, gives

a firmness and force to all acts emanating extract a portion of Mr. Martin's

from authority for the commonweal. remarks, which we consider ex- “ The monarchical government which cellent, monitory, and well-timed. attempted to maintain rule without the

aid of a church establishment, would

share the same fate as the Robesperian " If ever there were a period, in the council ; the delusive dream of worshipprogress of England, from the first im. ping a self created goddess of Reason planting of Christianity on its shores, to would soon vanish ; and the people, in

-as it

He says:

returning into the fold of Christianity, form of faith, and system of religion, would crush to atoms the false shepherds which its represents. But the free nawho betrayed them to the wolves of ture of the government, although it en. anarchy and ruin.

joins toleration to all other creeds, does “ We do not propose now entering not necessarily enjoin propagation of all into the opposite side of the question, other creeds; such a course of action as to the advantages which the church must end in the extinction of the goderives from its connexion with the vernment and nation that adopts it. state; or how the disadvantages sup- “Is that permanent individuality, posed to be attendant on such connexion termed the state, to be devoid of any may be obviated ; our present object religious principle? Is its form of civil has reference to the necessity which the polity to be based on a Socratinian or government itself labours under of Platonic code of morals—or is it to be maintaining, ay, of even drawing closer founded on revelation ? If the former, its connexion with an established form then any junction with religion might of religion—now that political freedom perhaps be dispensed with for some time, is advancing, and numerous young and if all men in the state were like Socrates dependent governments are being found. or Plato; if the latter, then some sys. ed by the parent state in every part of tem of religion, based on divine revethe globe. A despotism, whether it be lation, must become the avowed printhat of a single ruler, or of many rulers ciple of the state, as well as of any sin-is less dependent on a connexion with gle Christian individual in that state. a church establishment than a monarchi- Well, then, if religion be an inherent cal or constitutional government. The part of the government or state, is the despot, or despots, rule by brute force ; state religion to be the prevailing form of the will of one or two predominates, and religion in the majority or minority of that will enforces its decrees by military individuals composing the single body power. Despotism is, therefore, not called the state ? It seems to be for. only to a great extent independent of a gotten that one of the main differences connexion with a religious establish- between a republic and a monarchy is, ment; but as it alike disregards all re- that in the one the voice of the majority ligions, it is also tolerant of all creeds, of mouths, whether they be right or and protective of all systems, so long as wrong, govern; the minority, however they do not interfere with the political large, however intelligent, honest, and power of the state. But the case is wealthy, have no alternative but to bow widely different with a free, constitu- to decrees, wbich they may know to be tional government; it must adopt one or unjust, and destructive of the common other of the prevailing forms of religion, weal: in the other, (monarchy,) inteland having incorporated itself with that ligence, virtue, and property, regulate creed which it believes to be true, it is the state. Questions are not decided bound to uphold it paramount in civil by the number of voices, but by the as well as ecclesiastical power; to main- reason of some several heads; and there. tain the supremacy of the church by law fore, in choosing a religion for the state, established ; and, while allowing freedom or in adopting a principle of government, of conscience to all, granting only to the it is not the mere majority of individuals disciples of that church the delegated in a nation that regulate its affairs, but authority which the sovereign govern- the majority of intellect and wealth, ment can alone confer.

honestly and patriotically exercised. “ The very term free government, England, for instance, is a Christian while it implies toleration to all in their monarchy, but if the voice of the ma. respective modes of worship, implies jority of inbabitants living in subjection also a freedom to choose as a govern- to that monarchy were to be asked ment its own form of religion; and the whether they would consent to have power which gives to the government the state Christian, there would be an freedom of choice imparts also the overpowering negative. The subjects power necessary for its preservation : of the British throne are in number premising, of course, that the govern. about one hundred and thirty millions ! ment of a Christian country deems it of these little more than 30,000,000 are requisite to profess and act on some nominally Christians; 25,000,000 are settled form of religion.

Mahomedans; of Buddhists or Jews If the government of England be a there are 10,000,000 ; of Hindoos, free government, representing the opi. 40,000,000; and of Pagans, of various denions of a majority of the intelligence, nominations, there are about 25,000,000. virtue, and wealth of the kingdom Now, if the religion of the majority of and that majority be of the Protestant inhabitants in a nation should be the faith-then, as a Christian government, religion of the state, (or head of that it is bound to uphold and expand the nation,) then ought the religion of the British government to be Hindooism: away, and we are still manifesting the for by the act of parliament of 1833, con- same culpable apathy, the same criminal ferring the government of British India indifference to the spiritual welfare of on the East India company for a series our fellow-citizens, and, bad we not the of years, the natives of British India, following fact recorded by Judge Burof every cast, creed, and colour, are de- ton, in his recent work on "Religion clared to be • British subjects. Thus and Education in New South Wales,' it will be seen to what absurd lengths we would have hesitated to believe in an erroneous proposition may be pushed, its truth. “A settlement has been and it is thus only that we can recognize recently established at Port Essington, truth from error. A true principle can on the north-west coast of New Holnever be converted into an absurdity ; land; the expedition left England about a false principle, or a mixture of truth

a year ago, under command of Sir and falsehood, must, when extended to John Gordon Bremmer, in his Majesty's ultimates, be found absurd and imprac- ship Alligator, accompanied by the Bri. ticable.

tomart, Lieut. Stanley commander, and “ If then, England, as a Christian coun. consisting of 500 souls, unprovided with try, is to go on extending colonies over any minister of religion! There was the face of the globe, she is also bound to no clergyman at the disposal of the extend her religion-the religion of the Bishop of Australia when the expedition state. Heretofore we have acted as if reached Sydney on its way to the inour only duty was to get rid of and ex. tended settlement, but his lordship furpatriate our surplus population, without nished it with such means as were in any care what became of them, so as his power; he caused a temporary the narrow boundaries of this island church to be erected for them, and were freed from their injurious pressure Bibles, Prayer-Books, and other reon subsistence.

ligious publications, to be supplied to Sir “ But surely there ought to be felt J. Bremmer. [Judge Burton's work, some degree of national responsibility: page 2.] Has a state no conscience ? It would “ We call on this nominally and proseem not. When the first settlements fessing Christian country to awake from of convicts was being formed on the its shameful indifference to religion ; we shores of Botany Bay in 1787, then an tell them that there are subjects of vital eight months' voyage, and the utter- importance for man's temporal and etermost extremity of the earth,' – the nal welfare wbich have been utterly whole expedition, consisting of eleven neglected, and that an awful responsi. sail of ships, with two years provisions bility awaits our present and future on board, and containing 565 male and course of action. Land and emigration 192 female convicts, a governor, with boards are being formed, the soil of the upwards of 200 troops, (as a guard,) dark coloured heathen is being seized, and tbeir wives and children, were on and the white heathen is driving him the point of being despatched from Eng- from the land of his forefathers, withland to found a settlement at the anti- out building up the slightest real Cbris. podes for the refuse of our goals and tian fabric. Every acre of land in every prison-bouses, without a single minister new colony should have a tenth of its of religion being deemed necessary ; produce set apart for the maintenance and it was only by the urgent and press of an established church, and every ing intreaties of a good man, the Rev. township should bave a portion of its Richard Johnson, through the influence area reserved for education in unison of Sir Joseph Banks and Bishop Por: with the principles of that established teus, that the government tardily and church. Those lands are crown lands ; reluctantly assented to Mr. Johnson ac- the crown professes to uphold an estabcompanying the expedition; while on sisbed form of religion ; but its profeslanding no measures were adopted that sions are worse than useless, unless effi. could, in the slightest degree, indicate eient measures be taken to carry those whether a Pagan or Christian govern- professions into action. The Protesment had taken possession of the coun. tants of England, Ireland, and Scotland try, and founded a new empire. Few ought to unite as one person, to enforce, indeed could be the expected blessings if it be necessary, the formation and from such a commencement, and hope. maintenance of an established church in less would it be to expect that trans- each of our colonies. If the limbs beportation would reform the guilty of- come diseased when tbe frame of the fender, when he was denied all means body is enfeebled, the malady must of returning within the pale of that soon reach the heart. All classes of merciful faith which, by his crimes, he Dissenters are interested in the mainbad once rejected.

tenance of an established church ; be. “Upwards of half a century has rolled neath its shelter only can they have Christ. OBSERV. No. 28.

2 H

repose and freedom; and were the Pro- that in the often rapid changes of testant church abolished to-morrow, would find the Romanist church, which political shuffling, we have had would inevitably succeed it, very dif. many secretaries of state for the ferent in its exercise of civil as well as colonies, who, at their accession to ecclesiastical polity.'

office, and some who, at their exit, These passages present import- did not even know the very names ant“ materials for thinking." In of the British dependencies whose a religious view our widely-spread affairs they undertook to admicolonies have been disgracefully nister; and much less their reneglected; nor indeed can we say spective laws, habits, interests, much as to their uniform good statistics, and moral or religious management in other respects; condition. Lest any of our readbut there is this difference between ers should remain in the same the two cases, that with regard to condition, we will copy from some secular concerns, the mother state observations annexed to a petition has considered it her duty to do addressed by Mr. Martin in 1837 her best, though bad it has often to the House of Commons, recom. been; but that with regard to re- mending the establishment of an ligion, her maxim has been pretty administrative Board for the mamuch to do as little as possible ; nagement of colonial affairs, the regarding it as a matter too great following summary. or too little for her care ; above “ The territories under the manageor below her superintendence. ment, control, and protecting care and Nor can we wonder that, if states

patronage of the Secretary of state, are:

In North America.-Canada, Upper men do not feel very stringently

and Lower, New Brunswick, Nova Scothe responsibility before God which tia, Prince Edward's Island, Cape Brerests upon

them in this behoof, they ton, and Newfoundland : area, 435,000 should be glad, in the overwhelming square miles, or 279,400,000 acres, with

a population of one million and a half of multiplicity of colonial affairs, to

white colonists. [Independent of the avoid as much as possible all re- foregoing, Hudson Bay territories extend ference to a question which it is over 370,000 square miles.] admitted involves some points of

In South America. -Demerara, Esse

quibo, Berbice, Honduras, and the Falk. difficulty and perplexity. If they land Isles ; area 165,000 square miles, or can persuade themselves that it is

105,600,000 acres, with a population of allowable to be indifferent upon 120,000. the subject, and still more if they

In the West Indies.-Jamaica, Trini.

dad, Tobago, Grenada, St. Vincent, Barare pleased to think that the pro- badoes, St. Lucia, Dominica, Antigua, motion of religion is not within Barbadoes, Montserrat, Nevis, St. Kitts, their province, and that the less Anguilla, Tortola and the Virgin Isles,

New Providence and the Bahama Is. statesmen notice it in any way the

lands, St. George's and the Bermuda better, they have abundant excuse

Isles; area 13,000 square miles, or in the pressure of business which

7,720,000 acres; population, 1,000,000. must be transacted, to avoid wast- In Africa. The Cape of Good Hope, ing their time or strength upon

Mauritius, Mabé and the Seychelle Is

lands, St. Helena, Ascension, Sierra "theological whimsies." It is little

Leone, the Gambia, Accra, Cape Coast, known to the public how weighty &c.; area, 250,000 square miles, or is the daily amount of colonial 160,000,000 acres ; population, 350,000 administration; and it is a mystery

In Austral-Asia.—New South Wales,

Van Dieman's Land, Swan River, King to those who are better informed,

George's Sound, South Australia, Norhow it ever chances to be trans

folk Island, &c.; area, 500,000 square acted; except upon the satirist's miles, or 320,000,000 acres : population, solution of the little skill or care that 120,000.

In Asia. - Ceylon ; area, 24,644 is necessary for the government

square miles, or 11,771,160 acres : popuof nations. We seriously believe lation, 1,000,000.

" In Europe.-- Gibraltar, Malta, Gozo, legislature, or the public, to any Corfu, Cephalonia, Zante, Santa Maura, great question connected with the Ithaca, Paxo, Cerigo, &c. and Heligoland;

religious welfare of the colonies, area, 1,500 square miles, or 1,000,000 acres; population, 400,000.

relate the coldness, the mistrust, Totril under the Colonial Secretary:- the opposition, which have too 1,750,000 square miles, equal to 1,120,- often impeded him at every step. 000,000 acres, with a population of at least 5,000,000 of British subjects, and

Mr. Wesley records, that when in daily increasing. The languages used in 1780 he presented to Bishop these different colonies embrace the Eng. Lowth, for ordination for the Amelish, French, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, rican colonies, a young man whose Portuguese, Greek, Maltese, Cingalese; character and qualifications were &c. The laws are more or less based on the customs of the different nations stated to be unexceptionable, and from whom these languages are derived, were not not disallowed by the and from whom we obtained the posses: bishop, and for whose support a sions. The religions embrace the English sufficient stipend was guaranteed, Episcopalian, Dutch Lutheran, Roman Catbolic, and Greek churches, with va- the bishop refused to receive him, rious shades of Pagan idolatry and forms on the ground that another misof worship. The value of the maritime sionary was unnecessary,

“ there commerce of the above-mentioned pos. being,” said his lordship, “ three sessions is, in the aggregate, £35,000,000 per annum ; and the value of the pro

ministers in that country already.” perty, public and private, moveable and If such was the opinion of the preimmoveable, in lands, houses, roads, forts, late under whose ecclesiastical juris. canals, ships, trading stock, and horses, diction the colonies were at that peoxen, sheep, &c. is £450,000,000! all confided to the responsibility of a single riod placed, secular men might well individual, who has no permanency of think even three too many. It is office, and no local knowledge of the

not many years since Mr. Codner, vast interests committed to his care."

a merchant trading to NewfoundWhen we look over this list land, having witnessed the deplo(which of course does not include rable religious destitution of that India, that being under a special colony-the oldest in our possesadministration), and remember sion—and of the British colonies the sarcastic remark of a colonial on the adjoining continent, exerted ex-Secretary of State, that of all himself to make the evil known, these vast possessions,“one colony and to get it redressed; but was only was in a state of tranquillity — repulsed from house to house with Heligoland,” we cannot much the declaration that the governwonder that public functionaries ment would do nothing; and that have sometimes allowed affairs to the public needed do nothing, for go on with as much of routine that the Society for the Propagaand as little of volunteer energy tion of the Gospel already did as possible ; but we are surprised every thing that was requisite. that the people of England have Only a few years ago, when Bi. been so long content to have it so. shop Stuart of Canada came over We say nothing of this apathy in to England to obtain some help relation to questions of politics, for his diocese, to relieve which commerce, and jurisprudence, he had munificently devoted a these we gladly consign to states- large portion of his own property, men; but we deeply deplore the and was the more encouraged in indifference of so many of our hoping that something might be countrymen, in relation to the spi- effected, as his own nephew, Sir ritual interests of our foreign de- James Graham, then a cabinet pendencies. Let any man who minister, was anxious for the sue, has endeavoured to arouse the cess of his plans, as were some attention of the government, the other of the public servants, he

« VorigeDoorgaan »