Perth (1860)

The following address has been printed by the worthy minister whose name is appended to it, and who says, "The work of God goes on wonderfully, and we aim at nothing less than the whole town."

To THE PEOPLE or PERTH.—MY DEAR FRIENDS, —In the name and at the request of some of our fellow-townsmen, I venture to address to you a few words of love and kindness. We feel that we are come to a great crisis in our history. After nearly two years of prayer and waiting, the Lord has visited us in unexampled mercy. You are yourselves witnesses of the events of the last fortnight—you saw the multitudes who gathered together at the open-air meetings on the South Inch and crowded the City Hall and other places at night. Those of you who mingled with these assemblages could not but have observed the solemn impression which prevailed, and must also have heard expressions of interest, conviction, prayer, and thanksgiving, from many a lip. In particular, at the close of the meeting on the second night, the City Hall presented a scene never before witnessed on such a scale in Perth—it was like a battle-field, a harvest-field---hundreds were seeking the Lord, or rejoicing that they had found Him. Blessed be God for such a season; and yet dear friends, had this been all we should not now be addressing you. Had the movement stopped at this point we might have attributed it to the presence and labours of those ministers and laymen from a distance, whom the Lord has so greatly honoured and blessed in other places. But God has shown us the truth of his own Word, "Not by power, nor by might, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord." After all our visitors had left us, the meetings con­tinued as crowded, as solemn, as earnest as before. It even seems as if the impression were deepening and growing from night tonight. Oh! dear friends, salvation is near, salvation is in the midst of us. The light of God is shining, and men are awakening—the Spirit of God is come, and is convincing men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. Hundreds remain night after night to seek the Saviour, and many find Him. Oh! it seems easy at present to be saved. What, in ordinary times, is spread over months or years, seems now compressed into an instant, the twinkling of an eye. Men comprehend at once that they are lost, helpless, without strength, and that the Lord Jesus is all they need. They feel that He is near them, is knocking at their door, is stretching out his hands and that it is only a look, a cry, an act of reliance, and the day dawns upon them, and their peace begins to flow as a river. Oh, friends, salvation is near, very near. We can testify of many, who come to these meetings careless, worldly, and influenced only by curiosity, and who vet leave them trusting and rejoicing in the Lord. Yea, we have seen some awakened, converted, and beginning to exhort and instruct others, and all this in the course of a few moments. Beloved friends, there is nothing strange or incredible in this: all Scripture testifies to it. What is salvation? It is just Christ. All the fullness is in Him, and God offers Him freely to all who will receive Him. Does it take long to accept a gift? Does the beggar take long to receive your offered alms? And just so with us God is willing and waiting to give you his Son. Are you willing to receive Him?—then. He is yours. Beloved friends, we long for you in the Lord, our hearts are yearning over you. We are happy ourselves, and we wish you to be happy too. Come and see, come and judge for yourselves. Be not influenced by the opinions of men. Do not listen to the suggestions of your own hearts. This is an acceptable time, a day of merciful visitation. The wind is blowing, the tide is swelling high, cut your moorings and join us in our voyage to Emmanuel's Land. Beloved friends, you know me, I have been long among you, and have much reason to love you. I left you, and reckoned, that after a short season of labour for my Lord, I should lie down in the dust of a far distant land. But the Lord has strangely brought me back, to gladden me with the sight of answered prayers and fulfilled desires. I hope now to lie down among you, and rest till the Master comes and bids us rise to meet Him And oh, my desire is that we might all rise re­joicing and singing together our song of triumph, "O death, where is thy sting; oh grave, where is thy victory." Ah, friends, love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. How poor will all appear in that day when they are passing away as a dream of the night, and when only that Saviour will be precious, who is now standing at your door and pressing Himself on your acceptance. In name of my friends and fellow-labourers, I entreat, I be­seech you not to let this season of mercy pass unimproved­--night and day we pray for you.

Believe me very affectionately yours,

Aug. 31, 1860.JOHN MILNE

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume III, page 98.

The Rev. John Milne, whose stirring address to the people of Perth we published in No 62, says:—" The work of God still goes on wonderfully. This is the seventh week, and there is no abatement. All the country round is now on fire. Yours affectionately, John MILNE."

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume III, page 122.

Additional Information

The current City Hall (it might be knocked down soon) stands on the site of the old City Hall and a Market Square.

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