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Notwithstanding the bleak weather last night, the Town Hall was crowded to the doors on the occasion of Mrs Hampson s third mission service. Prior to the service proper commencing, the united choir sang, with remarkably good effect, several of ffankey’a well-known hymns. The Rev. 0. H. Standage also offered some welltimed hints to those workers who, during the mission, were inclined to allow their zeal to over-ride their judgment. A hymn having been sung the Rev. A. M Beattie engaged in prayer. Following another hymn, Mrs Hampson read very impressively several passages of Scripture, mving brief but telling expositions as she proceeded. She was very earnest in her endeavours to show the difference between the religion of the head and that of the heart. There were men abroad in the world with their heads crammed full of religious truth, but their hearts were destitute of the divine gospel. They might just as well scatter a number of seeds over the floor of the hall and expect them to germinate and grow, as to expect that the word of God would take root and flourish in the heads of people. In consequence of this delusion men were going down to destruction ; it was lower than the head that people were to be affected in these matters—it must be right down at the heart. “ For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness. ” Speaking on the verse—“ Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved,” the I word “ whosoever ” was specially emphasised. Suppose that God had written a dictionary of all those who were to be saved, and, on turning over the leaves, she was to find her name in it, it was possible the devil would suggest that the name recorded was that of another Mrs Hampson. In such a case doubt and unhappiness would be the result; but instead of doing this, God had written the blessed word “ whosoever,” which included everyone. Each of Mrs Hampson’s expositions were what might be termed a “ sermonette ” in itself, and the manner of her reading alone rivetted the attention of her auditors. Another hymn being sung, Mrs Hampson engaged in prayer, and then spoke from John iii.,7—“Ye must be born again,” and alsofrom the 14th verse of the same chapter. Last night they had endeavoured to get to the top and bottom of the word “ lost,” but in this they had failed. It was quite beyond them to fully realise what was implied in that one word “ lost.” To-night they were going to try to grasp another word spoken by the Lord Jesus—“must.” There was no license in this matter, but with the same authority which an earthly parent spoke when expecting unhesitating obedience from a child, so the Heavenly Father spoke to all such as were not saved—“Ye must be born again.” When Jesus used those words he was not in conversation with a bad man ; it was with Nicodemus, the rigid, strict Jew, an honest and upright man ; but ho was restless and uneasy in his mind, and came to Jesus as an equirer after truth. Nicodemus interviewed Jesus in the evening—not because he was a coward, but because the daily life of Christ was one of unceasing labor, and the opportunities for quiet conversation were only to be had at night. Without noticing the compliment paid by the earnest Jew, the Saviour had gone to the root of the tree, and had replied to his query, in the words of the’text. Nicodemus failed to understand what was

meant by such language, and could not comprehend how the haughty, intellectual man could be stripped of his physical and mental pride, and be brought low at the Saviour's feet as a tiny child to have new life and vitality breathed into it. All had been born into some kingdom, and nearly the first words taught to a child after it could speak were to answer the question where it was born. She (Mrs Sampson) was sent that night to ask her hearers- not what church did they wor-

ship at, not what chapel they attended ; net are you an elder, a deacon ; do you attend class meetings or take the sacrament ; but are you born again ? Not have you turned over a new leaf, but have you received the kingdom of Christ in your hearts ? That kingdom was righteousness, peace, and joy. Had they gut it ? Perhaps they said they were honest men, and led just as good, and perhaps better, lives than those who professed more. Such objections would not stand good, and although it might be painful and humiliating to know there were counterfeits, the very existence of them was a glorious proof of there being a grand reality. The kingdom of- God was righteousness. Had her hearers that righteousness, because without it, the peace would not be obtained 1 A gentleman once told her that he felt as good a man as many others, and as happy as some who made more fuss. She had quietly asked that man if ho had ever shut himself up for half an hour in a room alone with God. He confessed ho had not,

and promised to do so. But the day following ho called on her and said that after ten minutes’ reflection and thought he could not bear it. If they had not the peace of soul which would bear reflection for half an hour it was not worth the name. And if they had not the peace, what about the joy 1 Peace followed wellfounded righteousness, and joy succeeded. If they had not this peace, the Lord Jesus instructed them how they might obtain it. Mrs Hampson then, in graphic language, pourtrayed the powerful and devastating effects of the wind, and followed it up with striking rennrks on the similarity to the wind of the Divine Spirit’s work on men’s hearts and lives. The Spirit came to men’s hearts and uprooted the giant oaks of unbelief, lifting off the roofs of pride; and the character upon which men prided themselves so much was torn down in a scattered heap. Had they felt the power of this Spirit 1 Its power was seen in the results. They should know whether they had gone through the process ; whether sin had been removed and the cleansing work done. The new birth was a new life, and fed by a new process. There was a physical consciousness, which all possessed, an intellectual consciousness, and a

spiritual consciousness, and it was unavailing for anyone to toll her that this spiritual life, procured at the foot of the Cross, was no use. It was to be held through time and eternity. Christ told Nicodemus how to get this life in the other “ must ” —“ And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, oven so must the son of man be lifted up.” Mrs Hampson then showed how, as in the case of the serpent-bitten Israelites, a remedy i had been provided by God for sin-stiicken souls—in the one case a look at the brazen serpent, in the other a look at the Saviour. Let the soul’s eye be fixed upon Gild’s own appointed remedy, and the result would he the quiver and throb of a new life. A very lengthy address, of which the above is but a brief condensation, was brought to a close by a special appeal being given to the sceptics, who were vainly trying to understand the mysteries of religion, to accept the word of God as a reality, and they would then be better able to solve God’s problems and fathom His mysteries. During the evening it was intimated that the mission would be continued this evening, and to-morrow morning at 8.30 another service will be held ; a children’s service to take place in the afternoon, and the usual mission service to-morrow evening at 7.30. A large number of enquirers again remained behind

of Mrs Hampson in Ashburton to do good are evidently bearing fruit. It was observed at last night’s service that while a great many persons were crowding round the entrance, not being able to obtain sitting accommodation, the gallery was nearly unoccupied. One of the stewards is in attendance thefd to show people to their seats, and the comfort of all would be increased if at this meeting and to-morrow night’s service the gallery was filled first.

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Bibliographic details

MRS. HAMPSON’S MISSION., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 635, 13 May 1882

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MRS. HAMPSON’S MISSION. Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 635, 13 May 1882

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