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This the young lady actually did the same day; for when I went out on Wednesday, 10th, in the morning, I met her father in the street, who accosted me in a great passion, saying, “ Moritz, you are going to deceive my daughter, and teach her disobedience to her parents !” I replied, “I do not wish to deceive her, but to lead her to the Saviour, and I have enjoined her to be obedient to her parents in everything but religion, for this is not the doctrine of the New Testament only, the God of Israel has long since decided this question, by the prophet Ezekiel xviii. and xxxiii.” He said, who cares for these old tales, they have no value in our enlightened days.” I replied, “You, Mr. Lehmann, may deem them to be old tales, but the Jehovah of our fathers lives yet, for he is new to me every day, and his word is also constantly new to me, and it will remain true, when all the Jews who reject Christ their only Saviour, will have to bemoan it through all eternity.” He answered, “But I, as a father, forbid you to receive my daughter into your house when she comes, otherwise you shall smart for it.”
“I, as a missionary," I rejoined, “cannot admit of such a prohibition, for I speak to every Jew about my Saviour, who is willing to listen to me, but I would request you to come with your daughter to me, and you will hear that I speak the same truth to her when you are present, as when she is alone with me; and I would also advise you to seek the Saviour for your own soul's sake.” He then left me, very angry.
As this young lady has gone to school with her two sisters for some years, to a school for young ladies, which is kept here in the Moravian
establishment, she continued to go there until Thursday, 11th, on the forenoon of which she was very sad, and wept; and told a young Swedish girl, whose mother lives in the house with us, that her mother treated her very ill, and that her father would force her to go the same afternoon to Dr. Heinemann, for instruction. She then left the school, about 12 at noon, and absconded, no one knew whither.
On Friday morning, the 12th instant, her father and mother came to me, desiring me to “ find their child for them, for they were sure that I was a party to her absconding.” I assured them that I had not the slightest notion of her intentions, nor had I the least hand in it; and if I could only have suspected that the young lady had such a plan in view, I should have done all in my power to prevent it; but they, as · her parents, have it entirely upon their conscience, if she should have done any harm to herself, as she would have done it out of terror at their ill treatment, because she would obey the calling of the Lord, and embrace his truths. I begged them to take this as a warning, and seek the salvation of their own souls, and told them, also, that they ought not to have forced their little daughter to be a Jewess, since they had at home never set her any example of Judaism.
Upon this they left me; but from that morning, until Wednesday, 17th, the house in which we live was actually beset and besieged by Jews, Swedish servants, and policemen; the latter even offered money to the servants, if they would divulge the secret, where I had hid the girl in the house ; and money was offered to my few Christian friends, among
if they would tell where I had put the girl. In all the clubs and inns, at the Exchange, reading-rooms, eating-houses, and coffee-rooms, I was their butt, and they lifted up a shout against me.
The Rev. A. Rönntgen, who has for now nearly a year been the agent from the Moravians here, and who stands at the head of their school, was, singularly enough, not suspected to have had a hand in this concern; and the parents of the girl, and the relations, even sought consolation from him under their distress; and they actually made him believe that they had never ill-treated the poor girl, nor laid any impediment in the way of her becoming a Christian; but that she had always been a very bad and disobedient child. At last, the parents advertised respecting her, and desired her to return to them. In all the churches of the town, and in the neighbouring country churches, her absconding was proclaimed, and her return required.
Now this poor terrified child had gone on foot three Swedish miles, through very muddy roads and bad weather, with no more than about threepence in her pocket, to a young Swedish girl whom she had known at school, and who now resides at Walda, with the widow of a Dean, to seek protection from her tormentors; and as soon as she had got to hear that her parents were advertizing for her, she wrote to her father, and told him that his awful threats and ill-treatment had caused her to abscond, and to seek a refuge somewhere, until the Lord should open another door for her ; but that she was very willing to return to her parents, if they would promise to treat her well, and not to hinder her from following the Lord Jesus Christ. She stated also her case and her sufferings in a letter to the Burgomaster, and begged him for his protection.
Mr. Rönntgen agreed with the parents that he would himself go to Walda, to fetch her home again. They authorized him to tell her in their name, that they now would give her full liberty to become a Christian. On speaking with the girl, he was fully convinced that the Lord had really begun a gracious work in her soul. He persuaded her father to send her for a year to Christiansfeld; and the latter promised that if, after the lapse of that time, she still desired to become a Christian, then she may be baptized, and he would always love and treat her as his child. On the 22nd, she was accordingly sent off to Christiansfeld. I hope this arrangement may not be hurtful to the young lady, for procrastination in religion is not only a loss of time, but is also dangerous to the soul, as it gives Satan a thousand opportunities for temptation. But I trust that the Lord will still know how to effect his
purpose with her, and with the other three enquiring Jewesses in this town.
THE JEWISH SOCIETY. On this labour of love may a blessing attend, May the Shepherd of Israel his Salem befriend; And hasten that period by prophets foretold, When the stragglers of Judah shall rest in his fold. For surely the time is approaching when He Will set, in his love, the law's prisoners free, And send them to feed in the ways of his gracé, And find them a pasture in every high place.
Behold, they shall come from afar at his word,
LONDON : Printed at the Operative Jewish Converts’ Institution,
Palestine Place, Bethnal Green.