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writings on both sides apparently have been somewhat subservient to the interest of New Testament piety. There are who declare their having been aided in the way of conviction of the truth of our sentiments by reading my opponent's works, while others have made a similar declaration in favour of mine. The case of one has been thought here very particular, and is like to make no small stir among the religious folks. The person was a most strenuous, as well as a very pious Poedobaptist, and had, I have often thought, more to say for himself in that particular than any one in the town. This very person was greatly unhinged by reading my second piece. A long dispute with me one evening at a friend's house finished the business. A full conviction of having been all along in an error was the consequence. And this same person was, along with three more, baptized here last Friday evening. It is too soon yet to tell what effect this event will have upon the denomination to whom this person belonged, and was considered by them as a sort of oracle. "Tis said there is a stir among them already, and that some of them are ready to think that their common argument against the use and importance of ordinances stands in need of being new modified. They have been considerably disappointed here in the business of proselyte-making ! Had I been as strenuous and laborious about it as they have been, I am apt to think I should by this time have had a pretty large congregation. But I choose to take my F
own way, and be governed by my own ideas. The encompassing sea and land to make proselytes, I apprehend, is not the business or characteristic of a disciple of the Apostles, but rather of a modern sect, and such as choose to imitate them. When our Lord applied those words to the Pharisees, he gave no hint that he would have his disciples go and do likewise. W. R.
But we are by no means to imagine that zeal for controversy had quenched, or even abated, this good man's regard for the interests of practical religion. A record of the passages of Scripture has been preserved on which were founded the discourses which he at this time delivered from the pulpit. They are highly practical—involving not merely the doctrines, but THE DUTIES, personal and social, inculcated by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Nor was Mr. Richards regardless of his own improvement; birth days are usually passed away in careless festivity. It is remarkable that the only natal days mentioned as kept in the Scriptures are those of Pharoah and Herod—the former one of the worst characters noticed in the Old, and the latter one of the worst characters denounced in the New Testament. Birth days, however, may be very innocently commemorated. And individuals arrived at maturity ought to render the period subservient to moral reflection. The following lines appear to have been written by Mr. Richards on one of those occasions. They are not introduced for their poetical merit, but as an effusion of rational piety.
On which poor hapless I was born
To pleasure and to pain;
And wantonness restrain
THE BEING who the whole directs,
Happy for frail short-sighted man,
He who can temper nature's springs,
In earth and air and skies!
-** - evolving years,
rol ** - ys, and toils, and tears,
... me, O my conscious heart, ... •ell have I perform'd my part on Life's amusing stage : ave t been honest, just, and true, " ulu giv'n to all what was their due, From Childhood up to Age:
Or have my passions oft prevail'd,
Alas! though free from grosser crimes,
My God! by whom I live and move,
For ALL thy goodness heretofore,
Mr. Richards, during his settlement at Lynn, was not forgetful of his relatives and friends in Wales. His excursions thither afforded him high gratification. He usually passed through Tewksbury and Pershore, to visit those among whom commenced his ministerial labours. Having made a stay of two or three months amidst the mountains of the Principality—labouring in word and doctrine—he reluctantly bade adieu to his dear relatives and friends, (for they were very dear to him), and returned by Bristol, staying a few days with his old Tutors, the Messrs. Hugh and Caleb Evans, who were always glad to see him. He then went forward to the vast Metropolis, where also he tarried much to his satisfaction. On this account the following brief epistle may be acceptable—it is addressed to his friend DAVID, of Norwich :—
DEAR DAVID, Lynn, Sept. 27, 1783. When I parted with you in London, 1 intended to go home in the Diligence the ensuing Saturday, but when I went the next day to the coach, I found all the places had been taken. I was then obliged to stay till the following week. On the