Thursday, September 06, 2007

'Through Many Trials' David Brown - VI

David Brown, now once more an evangelical full of zeal for Christ, was licenced to preach by the Presbytery of Aberdeen in June 1826. His father thought that his son would find it beneficial to spend a little time in London before he sought a pastorate. Accordingly David Brown went to London for two months in 1827, carrying letters of introduction (for his father was the Provost of Aberdeen) to relatives in London. Among others was one to the evangelical publisher James Nisbet. Unlike many 'evangelical' publishers today, Nisbet published serious Christian books, sermon volumes, biography and history, theological works, and so on. On his catalogue at the time was a 'Missionary Geography', a sort of 19th century version of 'Operartion World'.
Nisbet and Brown became firm friends, and Nisbet took the young man to his church. James Nisbet was an office-bearer in the congregation pastored at that time by the cdelebrated Edward Irving (illustrated). Irving was at the height of his fame, his church crowded with the rich and famous. David Brown was impressed with everything. Irving's stately figure, his manner, his preaching. A personal introduction impressed David Brown still more, for the two men had both read similar books and thought in similar ways. Both were earnest Christians. When they parted, and Brown returned to Aberdeen, it was quite a wrench.
Irving's Regent Square Church was finished in 1827, so David Brown was not present at the opening, when Irving occupied an hour and a half in the opening exercises before Thomas Chalmers, the guest preacher, had said a word. But in the summer of 1828 Brown was present when Irving preached at Roseneath, on the Clyde. David Brown did not yet have a fixed charge at this point, and late in 1829 he recieved a letter from Irving and the officebearers of the church in London calling him to the post of assistant minister. David Brown was inclined to go, his parents thought that ministry in London would harm his prospects.

God wiling, next time we shall see what the outcome was.



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