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The New Zealand Evangelist


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The press is universally admitted to be one of the most powerful moral agencies of the present day. The periodical press, especially, in almost endless forms, is employed to advance every cause. True religion has been much benefited by its aid. The remarkable developement of life and activity in the Church of Christ in recent times, has been caused in a great measure by the frequency and regularity, with which the truths and claims of the gospel have been presented before the public, by means of the periodcal press. If religious periodicals are found of such value in old and settled countries—they are still more needed in new and scarcely organized colonies. That something of this kind is needed in New Zealand, all who feel interested in the progress of the Gospel, will readily admit. Books are scarce; the population is scattered; some have few opportunities of attending upon public worship; others have little time to devote to reading; and many, exposed to the secularizing influences of colonial life, are losing a taste and relish for the things of God. In these circumstances a small publication that shall at regular and stated times, find its way into the remotest cottages of the settlement, presenting, in a concise form, important page 2 truths, striking facts, and heart-stirring events, connected with the Gospel, will it is hoped operate favourably in promoting the interests of true religion and pure, high-toned morality.

The community is too small to support denominational periodicals; but the different Evangelical bodies are sufficiently able to support a periodical to advocate the great principles they hold in common. This Magazine has been commenced with this object. It is to advocate the doctrines recognised by the Evangelical Alliance. The Editorial department will be under the management of the Ministers connected with the Evangelical Alliance in Wellington, assisted by brethren in other places. The Magazine will contain articles, original and selected, in exposition or illustration of important truths—the latest and most interesting religious intelligence, general and local—reviews and notices of books,—biographies of eminent individuals,—anecdotes, poetry, &c., &c.

It will be the object of the conductors to keep the Magazine free from every thing sectarian, but to give full prominence and call earnest attention to the great Catholicities readily recognised, but rarely fully appreciated by all Evangelical denominations. They will seek “the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.” The glory of God, and the peace and edification of the Church will be their leading aim.

Conscious to some extent of the importance and responsibility of the duties they are about to undertake—of the necessity of divine grace to assist them, and the divine blessing to prosper their efforts, they solicit an interest in the prayers of all who fear God; for success in their undertaking. They have no pecuniary object in view: the Magazine is published at the lowest possible price to cover expenses. Its size is small, and its pretentions humble. They wish to excite no expectations that they cannot satisfy, nor make promises they cannot fulfil. They promise nothing but diligence; but they resolve to spare no labour in making this publication worthy of support, in rendering it a faithful organ for diffusing page 3 Evangelical principles, for warning against deadly errors and prevalent immoralities, for recording religious intelligence, for advocating scriptural education, and for providing interesting and instructive reading to the young.