« ForrigeFortsett »
Them that honour Me, I will honour.'—1 SAM. II. 30.
N the General Assembly of the Free
Church of Scotland, June, I, 1855, Dr.
commissioners from the Synod of the Presbyterian Church in England, spoke as follows: While many of the Disruption elders have been taken away from the Free Church, their sister church in England had likewise to utter her lamentation for that stanch friend of Presbyterianism and of missions, James Nisbet of London—a man who, on the memorable day of the Disruption, stood up in his place in that house, and, with a tearful eye and a grateful heart, tabled his thousand pounds, in testimony of his love for them, and of his admiration of the grace then granted them. All these bereavements are fitted to humble the one church and the other, and constrain them right
heartily and unitedly to say : “Help, Lord, for the godly man ceaseth, for the faithful fail from among the children of men.
The moderator, Dr. Henderson, of Glasgow, in returning thanks to the deputation, made special reference to the same bereavement: 'I cannot conclude without referring to an event which my friend Dr. M'Kenzie made allusion to the removal of a beloved friend and townsman of my own ; but of whom I speak here, not so much as my friend, but as the friend of our church and your church,—the late Mr. James Nisbet, who, as you have reminded us, stood on that step on the first night of the Disruption Assembly, and with a gushing heart and tearful eye, laid on the table, or rather put into the hands of Dr. Chalmers, his munificent offering. That event has not passed from our memory. The man will live long in the remembrance of those who knew him. He was a man, in some respects peculiar ; a man of strong feelings, of strong prejudices, and of strong affections. He had a most intense love of presbytery, and yet
he had a heart which took into the embrace of its affections every man whom he recognised as a brother in Christ, whatever his denomination. Many are the servants of God who had experience of his Christian hospitality. He received many a righteous man as a righteous man.
He received many a prophet in the name of a prophet; and I believe that now, according to the munificent liberalities he exercised, and by the promise of the great Giver of good, the great Rewarder of His people, he has gone to receive a righteous man's reward.'
"The church their hallowed memories takes in trust,
Their honoured names are registered above;
Where'er its wings, expanding like a dove,
Where'er the name of Christ the heart can move,
' Emigravit is the inscription on the tombstone where he lies;
Dead he is not, but departed, for the Christian never dies. Fairer seems the ancient city, and the sunshine seems more
fair, That he once has trod its pavement, that he once hath
breathed its air.'
IN the National Scotch Church, Regent
Square, a mural tablet had previously been erected on one side of the pulpit,
and at the expense of the kirk-session, to the memory of William Hamilton ; and another on the other side, of the same kind of material, and of similar dimensions, was subsequently raised to the memory
of James Nisbet. In some respects the men were widely different; but they were most closely and lovingly associated together in the service of the same sanctuary. Nothing, therefore, could be more appropriate than the placing of such memorials in the house of God, which was so enshrined in the warmest affections of their hearts, and where, after the labours and struggles of this mortal life, their precious dust is now reposing. And though it is scarce possible to regard them in any other light than as pillars in the temple of our God above, yet it is pleasant to think that the names by which they were known on earth, and the memory of their righteous deeds, if engraven anywhere else than on the living hearts of those who loved them, should be inscribed, in close proximity to one another, on the walls of the same noble edifice which they were so instrumental in building up, within whose sacred courts their voices,