Anecdotage of Glasgow
Rev. Dr. William Anderson and the
following characteristic story of this popular
divine who was minister of John Street U.P. Church from 1822 till his
death in 1872, is told on the authority of his sometime colleague, Rev.
Dr. A. Macleod, afterwards of Birkenhead:
In the course of
reading the 15th Psalm he paused at the words, "He putteth not out his
money to usury," and said:
"There was once in this church a
poor widow, and she wanted £20 to begin a small shop. Having no friends,
she came to me (her minister); and I happened to know a man, not of the
church, who could advance the money to the poor widow. So we went to the
man, the widow and I, and the man said he would be happy to help the
widow. And he drew out a bill for £20, and the widow signed it and I
signed it too. Then he put the signed paper in his desk, and took out the
money and gave it to the widow. But the widow, counting it, said:
"Sir, there is only £15 here.
It is all right, said the man,
that is the interest I charge. And as we had no redress we came away.
But the widow prospered. And she brought the £20 to me, and I took it
myself to the office of the man who had lent it, and said to him:
Sir, there is the £20 from the
"And he said, Here is the paper you
signed, and if you know any other poor widow I will be happy to help her
in the same way.
"I said to him, You help the widow!
Sir, you have robbed this widow, and you will be damned, if you do not
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