John Gifford Bellett was an Irish Christian writer and theologian, and was influential in the beginning of the Plymouth Brethren movement. Bellett was born in Dublin, Ireland. He was educated first at the Grammar School in Exeter, England, then at Trinity College Dublin, where he excelled in Classics, and afterwards in London. It was in Dublin that, as a layman, he first became acquainted with John Nelson Darby, then a minister in the established Church of Ireland, and in 1829 the pair began meeting with others such as Edward Cronin and Francis Hutchinson for communion and prayer.
Bellett had become a Christian as a student and by 1827 was a layman serving the Church. In a letter to James McAllister, written in 1858, he describes the episcopal charge of William Magee, Archbishop of Dublin, that sought for greater state protection for the Church. The Erastian nature of the charge offended Darby particularly, but also many others including Bellett. The pair bonded particularly over prophetic issues, and attended meetings and discussions together at the home of Lady Powerscourt, and Bellett and Darby (along with the Brethren movement in particular) were particularly associated with dispensationalism and premillenialism.
Bellett wrote many articles and books on scriptural subjects, his most famous works being The Patriarchs, The Evangelists and The Minor Prophets.
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2 Chronicles 6: 1, 2
It was no common moment in the experience of a man of God, when Solomon uttered these words, "The Lord hath said that He would dwell in the thick darkness; but I have built an house of habitation for Thee, and a place. for Thy dwelling for ever."
A wondrous thought it was, that anything done or erected on the face of this defiled earth, in the mid ...read
A Brief Word on the Epistle to the Galatians
I believe that we might shortly describe this epistle as thus--the "scripture" by the ministry of Paul now, as once by the voice of Sarah, casting the bondwoman and her son out of the house of Abraham.
The apostle, in order to this, first proves his warrant. And this he does to perfection in Gal. 1, 2--showing that he received his gospel purely an ...read
A Fair Show in the Flesh
"The truth," or the doctrine of the Son, as the Lord Himself teaches us (John 8: 32-36), sets free all those who receive it. It is the "law of liberty" (James 1, 2); it is "mercy rejoicing over judgment;" for judgment has been duly and fully marked against us as guilty, but through the blood of sprinkling mercy is secured, and by ...read
(This letter is printed from the writer's own MS., and has not been, within the editor's knowledge, before published. Several more will be given (D.V.) as opportunity offers.)
My Dear Brother,--Faith counts upon the end from the beginning, as our hymn has it--
"The guilt of twice ten thousand sins
One moment takes away;
And grace, when first the ...read
A Letter on Neutrality as to Christ, or Bethesda
I am glad at having received your second letter, and I purpose, if the Lord will, to give it a larger answer than perhaps you counted on. But I do so designedly--for I believe the "Brethren" have, under present circumstances painful as they are, an opportunity of learning some good lessons, and we may, through grace help each othe ...read
A Letter to a Bereaved Brother
My dear John,
How much I charge myself for want of joy in God; and I have just come from looking at a scripture that may be able to fix this charge still more home upon the spirit; I mean the opening of Luke. What joy among the angels there; what joy on earth in the vessels filled by the Spirit there! The same illustration, indeed the one feature ...read
A Letter to a Sister
The Lord bless you, my dear sister; and if called on to take the journey somewhat more solitarily than your heart had been wont to count upon, and to know sorrows which had not come within the range of your forebodings, may His hand be with you, and its well-known staff. "God is His own interpreter."
There is no providence by which He deals with u ...read
Beloved Brother,--I had a little scrap on Jeremiah lying by me. I do not know if it will suit the present current of your thoughts, but it may give a little communion for some half hour, and it is well to look at the growing character of those boastful and yet religious days in which we live. The Lord keep us, dear brother, and surely He will; "for ...read
Luke 6: 22, 23.
"Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven." Luke 6: 22, 23.
It is an immense thing when you see and accept t ...read
A Meditation on Canticles
The character of the soul's communion delineated in this little book is very elevated. It is something that we may say with sorrow we little reach. There is no question of sin at all here; it is no enquiry either into the fact or the nature or the ground of our acceptance with God. Such questions and enquiries are here settled beforehand. The commu ...read
A Thought on Exodus 40 and Acts 2
The Tabernacle is set up in Exodus 40, the Old Testament house of God. The Lord enters it and adopts it. The Cloud rests on it, and the Glory enters into it.
So is it, though in another form, in the New Testament house of Acts 2. The Holy Ghost, as a rushing mighty wind, enters into it, and cloven tongues like as of fire sit upon it. This is the L ...read
Genesis 12 - 25.
In earlier parts of the book of Genesis, I have already traced two distinct histories--that of the antediluvian saints, or the times from Adam to Enoch; and that of Noah and of those who followed him, down to the scattering of the nations.
The first of these histories occupies Gen. 1 - 5, the second, Gen. 6 - 11.
In the chapte ...read
Abraham in Genesis 18, 19
The elevation of Abraham in Genesis 18, 19, is something very peculiar.
He seems to apprehend the Divine Stranger and His angelic companions at once, needing no introduction, or notice, or revelation--as Joshua, Gideon, and others, in like circumstances, did. "He was accustomed to the Divine presence," as one has said. This opens these wondrous ch ...read
2 Samuel 11: 12. "The fool hath said in his heart, No God!"
David is the principal object before the mind of the Spirit of God in both the 1st and the 2nd books of Samuel. In the 1st book we see him brought from obscurity into honour and praise, and there standing, by the good hand of God, in full righteousness amid the persecutions of the wicke ...read
Afflictions and Consolations
There are three things in this epistle: 1st, the apostle contemplates the saint in times of various troubles; 2ndly, the mind with which the trouble should be passed through; and 3rdly, the consolations which God provides for such a time. There is nothing very remarkable in the bearing of it; but so much the more needed by the soul very often;--it ...read
Amos was, the prophet who went before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah, king of Judah. (Amos 1: l) We may say that he was the prophet of that event (Amos 8: 8; Amos 9: 5.)
That earthquake is treated by Zechariah as typical, as a notice of the Lord's controversy with the world, when again there will be earthquakes and pestilences, ministers of ...read
I have just been reading again that lovely fourth chapter of John. What a little heaven it is to sit in spirit there, and be in company with Him that is the eternal life, in full grace dispensing Himself to one of the degraded captives of pollution and death!
The satisfying water springs from that grace in the Son of God which reaches and quiets t ...read
An Introduction to Isaiah
In reading Matt. 1, 2, we learn, among other things, how the word of prophecy ought to be used; but we see also, how the carnal intellect treats it; and thus it furnishes a sound and healthful word to us, when we set ourselves down for a meditation on the prophetic Scriptures; for we are both guided and warned by what we find in those chapters.
Answers to Objections
"The important thing is having Jesus in the glory as our hope; a very subordinate thing, the question when shall we be in the glory with Him. If anyone's teaching made the saints value Jesus as their hope less, it would be sufficient to show their teaching to be faulty. But if it be only to the effect of making them think the time when they shall b ...read
Rev. 17, 18.
"Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy word is truth." This is a saying much to be remembered. It teaches us that we are not to make ourselves the judges of what sanctification or holiness is; Gods' word is to determine this, because holiness is that character or mind which is formed by God's word or truth.
We are apt to think that ...read