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MAGAZINE. Editorial Board.—Prof. Lloyd Snape, D.Sc. (Chairman), Prof. Angus, M.A., Mr. E. W. Thompson, B.A., Mr. J. H. Edwards (Secretary), and Mr. George Davis (Treasurer). Vol. i. SEPTEMBER, 1891. No. 3. THE STORY OF TWO HYMNS. By Prof. Angus, M.A. jT is a familiar truism that we read most fully the meaning of a poem, when we know the circumstances in which it was written. While it is often of wider range than the occa¬ sion which suggested it, yet the standpoint of the writer will reveal what we miss from any other point of view. To some degree this is true of hymns. Favourites such as Cowper's " God moves in a mysterious way," written " In the twilight of departing reason," or Anstice's " 0 Lord, how happy could we be" and Lyte's " Abide with me," both written in the Valley of the Shadow, gain in impressiveness and, sacred pathos, as we think of their writers, and the touching hymn "Lord, it belongs not to my care "—the hymn of an afflicted and persecuted man, uncertain of life, yet leaning on God and hoping for heaven—comes with special force from Richard Baxter. Two less familiar instances of this may be worth narrating at fuller length. There is a hymn which is deservedly a favourite in our Y.M.C.A. meetings and which was sung with much appropriateness at a recent meeting of the Congregational synod, breathing as it does a sweet spirit of Christian unity—the hymn beginning Blest is the tie that binds Our hearts in Christian love ; The fellowship of kindred minds Is like to that above. Its author, John Fawcett, when a lad of sixteen, heard Whitefield preach at Bradford in 1755, and was converted. He joined the Methodists, but three years after, having changed his views on Baptism, he became a member of the Baptist body and in 1765 was ordained minister of the Baptist Church at Wainsgate, a small place near Halifax. His energy and ability soon secured for him not only the esteem of his neighbours, but a growing reputation in the denom¬ ination. In spite of ill-health, he became known both as a preacher and as a writer, and in 1777 received an invitation to succeed Dr. Gill in the pastorate of the Church in London, one of the most influential positions in the denomination. " Many things " (says his biographer), " seemed to urge an acceptance of the invitation, as it offered him a prospect, both with respect to temporal supplies and extended useful-