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ized, so to speak, with the reality of the presence everywhere, by day and night, of the Saviour. Let him be taught to recognize Him as the hearer of his wordsthe searcher of his thoughts-the giver of his mercies-the preserver of his life-and the loving brother, and friend, and Redeemer, of every good and obedient child, -"the rewarder of all who diligently seek Him," especially of those "who seek Him early." Habituate your children to reverence the voice of duty, whether speaking in their own consciences, or through you, as the voice of God himself, which must be heard, because it speaks what is right. Let not God be represented as the object of fear and terror, but of love and confidence; and sin in themselves, as the only thing in the universe which should terrify them. But not to dwell upon the nature and extent of the religious instruction which a parent should impart, (a subject to be considered in a subsequent paper,) it is sufficient to indicate here, the habit of mind, which it is of vital importance that a child should possess. There are other habits, however, inseparably connected with reverence, which are at once the effect and evidence of its existence, and the means of its continued growth.
Prayer is one of those. From their earliest years, children should be taught to bow the knee to God. A form of prayer may be given, suited to their capacity; but petitions and thanksgivings, in their own childish and simple words, and connected, as they naturally will be, with their daily mercies, shortcomings, duties, and desires in behalf of themselves and others, should be encouraged. The Apostle Paul could say, "When I was a child, I spake as a child." Let no one despise or treat lightly the lispings of these babes! Are our own prayers as pure and wise as theirs are, in the eyes of the holy angels? Train up your children, then, to regular habits of morning and evening prayer. Let the sins for which they have been checked during the day be confessed. Let God's assistance be asked by themselves, to enable them to perform those duties in the nature of which they have been instructed. Let
the blessed habit be thus early formed, of recognizing their relationship to God of realizing His constant presence-His authority over them-their consequent responsibility to Him—and their dependence upon Him for every earthly blessing they enjoy; and for mercy to pardon, and grace to help. So ought you also to make them acknowledge God as the giver of their daily bread; by never permitting them to begin their meal without thanking God for it. A short form of thanksgiving may be taught them.
Attendance upon God's house, is another duty connected with reverence for God.Let not want of good clothes keep them or you away. It may not be God's will that you should have "a Sabbath dress," but it is His will that you should have a Sabbath spirit, and join with fellow-believers in the public worship of God. Duty is more than dress. Yet I know many parents who make it a rule never to bring their children to church, until they can obtain clothes from their own labour! Such children contract the idle and sinful habits of wandering all day in the fields, while their parents worship in, or at least visit, the sanctuary. The earlier your children acquire the habit of going to the House of God, the stronger will that habit become in after years. Jesus received praise from the children in the temple, when priests and scribes were silent.
"Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings He hath ordained praise." I knew a noble Christian lady, now no more, who said to me, "I have tried so to train up my children to habits of prayer and church attendance, that in after years, they should be unable to remember a time when they did not bow their knees to God, and join His people in the sanctuary."
Finally, train them up to reverence all that speaks of God-God's holy Day
God's holy Book-God's holy Name; and rest not till their obedience, selfsacrifice, truthfulness, and reverence, shall be real, and not apparent; inward, and not outward; because flowing from a higher source than your authority, even from the knowledge and the love of God in Christ Jesus, their Lord and yours!
WESLEY'S MOTHER ON HOME EDUCATION.
"In order to form the mind of children," observes this excellent mother and teacher, in a letter to her son, (Wesley,) in after years, explanatory of her method of procedure," the first thing to be done, is to conquer their will. To inform the understanding, is the work of time, and must, with children, proceed by slow degrees, as they are able to bear it; but the subjecting the will, is a thing that must be done at once, and the sooner the better; for, by neglecting timely correction, they will contract a stubbornness and obstinacy which are hardly ever after conquered, and never without using such severity as would be as painful to me as the child. In the esteem of the world, they pass for kind and indulgent, whom I call cruel parents, who permit their children to get habits which they know must be afterwards broken. When the will of a child is subdued, and it is brought to revere and stand in awe of its parents, then a great many childish follies and inadvertencies may be passed by. Some should be overlooked, and others reproved; but no wilful transgression ought to be forgiven children, without chastisement less or more, as the nature and circumstances of the offence may require. I insist upon conquering the will of children betimes, because this is the only strong and rational foundation of a religious education, without which, both precept and example will be ineffectual. But when this is thoroughly done, then a child is capable of being governed by the reason and piety of its parents, till its own understanding comes to maturity,
and the principles of religion have taken root in the mind.
self-will is the root of all sin and misery, "I cannot dismiss this subject yet. As so whatever cherishes this in children, ligion; whatever checks and mortifies it, ensures their wretchedness and irrepromotes their future happiness and piety. This is still more evident, if we consider that religion is nothing else than doing the will of God, and not our own; that the one grand impediment to our temporal and eternal happiness being this self-will, no indulgence of it can be trivial, no denial of it unprofitable. Heaven the parent who studies to subdue it in or hell depends on this alone; so that renewing and saving a soul. The parent his child, works together with God in the who indulges it, does the devil's work, makes religion impracticable, salvation unattainable, and does all that in him lies to damn his child, soul and body, for
they could speak, the Lord's Prayer, "Our children were taught, as soon as which they were made to say at rising and bed time constantly; to which, as they grew older, were added a short prayer for their parents, and some portion of Scripture, as their memories could bear. They were very early made to distinguish the Sabbath from other days. They were taught to be still at family ately after meals, which they used to do prayers, and to ask a blessing immediby signs, before they could speak, or kneel. derstand that they should have nothing They were quickly made to unthey cried for, and instructed to speak respectfully for what they wanted."
Speak low to me, my Saviour, low and sweet,
E. B. BARRETT.
THE EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
Ar its first announcement, the Gospel was received simply as a Divine remedy for human corruption. Like the still small voice to Elijah, after wind, and earthquake, and fire, the message of reconciliation fell upon the ears opened to hear it, with the assurance of God's presence and protection amid surrounding ruin and death. With the inhumanity and grossness of Pagan superstition on the one hand, and on the other, the empty hypocrisy of practical Judaism-the bewildered and despairing spirits in which God had still left a witness-found, in this marvellous provision of mercy, a solution to all their difficulties-a haven of peace and eternal rest. We need not wonder, therefore, at the singleness of spirit which the Gospel witnessed in its believing hearers, during the first ages of Christianity. Apart from the Divine influence, which continued for a time to assist its progress, every external force was so inimical, every worldly relation and hope so corrupt and unsatisfying to the awakened soul, that those who received the new faith, could have no thoughts with respect to it, but of its heavenly purity, and the completeness of its provisions,no feeling towards each other, but the love which it enjoined, strengthened, and secured, by their common obnoxiousness to surrounding iniquity-their common reception of a sure salvation-their common participation in the certain hope of restoration to the image of God, and of an eternal union of love with Him.
It necessarily became different, however, when, long after the withdrawal of supernatural influences, and the removal of danger in the Christian profession, the heart had not the same preparation for welcoming the blessed truths and promises of the Gospel. Ceasing to be felt with great intensity, as a salvation from imminent awful hazard, it became the subject of familiar handling, curious scrutiny and speculation, difference, and consequent strife and schism.
This tendency of the depraved perceptions and faculties of men to draw the
elements of division out of a Gospel of peace, is not disproved by the long and general ascendancy of the Church of Rome. In so far as unanimity may be alleged to have formed a characteristic of that power, it was not a unanimity founded upon the perception of a universal danger and remedy, or the knowledge of a Divine law of universal obligation; the unanimity referred to, was the fruit of a combination of vast temporal advantages and power in the ecclesiastics of a system, of which ignorance was an inherent condition. Thus it was a unanimity of authority, or subordination, and not of intelligence.
It was to be expected, therefore, that when the Papal yoke was thrown off, differences should arise among the minds liberated from it. At the same time that they protested against the Romish system, they asserted the right of private judgment in every believer; and we have already seen, that it is only under the highest spiritual influence, and under circumstances of singular and rare concurrence, that even the children of the truth are enabled to see eye to eye.
At the same time, it is perfectly clear, that the more nearly Christians approach to the standard of perfect knowledge and grace, the nearer will be their accordance in sentiment with each other, and the more slight and evanescent their separation; and it is equally evident, that it is their duty to aim at a perfect union in love, and in the obliteration of differences. This is manifest, not only from the grand design of the Gospel, as contained in the two tables of the law, but from the whole scope and tenor of its injunctions. Now, the purpose of THE EVANGELICAL ALLI. ANCE is to realize the duty and union now described; and it is our wish, not in an argumentative manner, but in a few plain remarks, to point out more particularly the Scriptural grounds upon which it is founded, and the objects at which it aims.
If, as already suggested, we look at the injunctions, and at the grand object of the Gospel, apart from the divisions in its
profession, it seems strange that there should need any argument to shew the consistency of Christians in associating themselves for the cultivation of brotherly love. The commandment of God is, “That we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another;" and the end is, that "If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us." Now, the declared object of the Evangelical Alliance, is to promote the union and the mutual love of the true disciples of Christ; and this object it prosecutes with a double intent,-First, That the world may be convinced: "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye love one another;" and, secondly, for our own assurance and comfort: " By this, we know that we have passed from death unto life, if we love the brethren." The design of the Alliance, therefore, is in accordance with the Divine will and precept; and the Christian mind which beholds the issues of the Christian life in the unspeakable magnitude of their importance and interest, recoils from the idea of a necessary separation from any joint-heir of the promises in the pursuit of their glorious hopes.
Have, then, Sectarian differences placed Christians under conditions, which preclude them from seeking together that spirit of love which they must find, and must partake of in common, if the end of their faith is to be accomplished? This is a conclusion, which he who regards his fellows with the remembrance of a common origin, and the joy of a common hope, will reluctantly admit. True, we have our separate creeds and symbols, and each clings with conscientious firmness to his own; but remembering and tenderly regarding the rights of private judgment, and remembering also how infinitely more precious is the crown, than any variety, however anxiously cherished, in the permitted means of attaining it, can we regard it as inconsistent? Is it not rather in the very spirit of our blessed faith, that we greet as brethren, and as objects of our dearest sympathies, all who, having set their faces Zionwards, are travelling thither with a devoted and
earnest purpose? To the satisfactory indulgence of the feeling, it is no doubt necessary, that we be assured our fellowtravellers are truly in the right way; and a test of this the Alliance has provided in its basis of doctrine, which is to each member the guarantee that the others are animated by a true faith, embracing the fundamental doctrines of the Gospel. This accordance, notwithstanding diversity, is prescribed by the Bible itself, when the Apostle enjoins the observance of charity and communion, notwithstanding such differences as are not subversive of what is fundamental; and declares, that we are not to despise or judge a brother on account of a diversity in Christian practice or opinion; but are to love him, because "God hath received him." And, again, when requiring us to believe that God will reconcile us by His revelation upon things in which we are otherwise or differently minded, He tells us in what we are agreed upon, to walk by the same rule, and mind the same thing.
But, if not in doctrinal variety, is there not an essential hindrance to Christian fellowship in the very relative position created by sectarian difference? And this is the difficulty really felt,—many minds being unable to perceive, how it is possible, that those who differ in creed, should truly and honestly love as brethren. It must be confessed, that the history of religious controversy affords too plausible a ground for the doubt. But although it has a historical foundation, it has none in duty or necessity. The spirit of division is not, in reality, stronger than the spirit of love, although it prevails against it too often by means of the weakness of faith, and the power of sin. When Zacharias, a man righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless, beheld the angel of the Lord, we read, that “he was troubled;"—the brightness of that heavenly presence reminding him of his own impurity. By a similar law, those who differ in holy things are troubled at each other's presence, whether it be by a secret monitor, unconsciously recalling the state of love from which they have fallen, and the sinfulness in which their
divisions originate; or whether it be, that their minds are carried forward to that glorious presence, in the light of which their secret thoughts and hidden feelings shall be revealed; and such is the virulence of our corrupt nature, that our alienation is widest from those to whom, by the laws of nature or of grace, we ought to be most closely attached,—“ a brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city." But this spirit of division finds its place only in the heart which is not entirely reconciled to God's will. Over him who has really and in truth made his own desires subordinate to the Divine pleasure, it can have no influence; for there the spirit of division is subject to a higher power, and it is paralyzed, and the trouble which it engenders is dissipated, when it encounters that love wherein he who dwelleth dwelleth in God, and God in him; and he thereby obtaineth boldness; and his love, thus perfected, casteth out fear.
To say, then, that the power of division is stronger in the followers of Christ, than that of love, is but to say, that their love is imperfect. We acknowledge that it is so; and it is with a sense of this infirmity, and with an earnest desire for its removal, that the members of the Alliance seek together the presence and the aid of Him who can alone make them to dwell in love, and so to dwell in Him, that, He also dwelling in them, their love may be perfected, and may have strength to cast out the fear and the power of division. It may be that they shall thus be made strong to withstand the Evil Spirit, which spake from Saul's mouth, when, striving against God's purpose, he reproached Jonathan, "Do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion? For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom." And we may, at the same time, by God's grace, obtain somewhat of the spirit, whereby Jonathan discerned in David, albeit the appointed possessor of his own inheritance, an excellence infinitely surpassing the richest earthly crown; and "his soul was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul; and Jonathan
stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle."
With regard to the uses, or beneficial influences of this Alliance, in relation to the differences between its members, we shall merely suggest one or two thoughts.
The most obvious influence, is that which, through individual instrumentality, may affect the bodies with which the members are severally connected. If the Alliance shall be blessed to yield the fruits which it is designed to produce, and if its members truly imbibe the spirit, and open their hearts to the feelings and influences to which it ought to give birth, then not only will they experience an increasing Christian charity towards each other, but they will grow also in the enjoyment of the love of God, and have an enlarged perception and estimate of the value of divine things,sentiments of which the true Christian cannot taste the blessedness without desiring to impart them to others; and it is, therefore, reasonable to expect, that the gracious influences thus excited, may, from this common fountain, be diffused, so as to carry a blessing into the various families, neighbourhoods, and churches with which the members are related.
One very obvious effect of the Alliance, in kindly disposing to each other the hearts of members of different churches, will be, that whatever of excellence any one church possesses in sanctified intellectual gifts, in missionary zeal, or in any other part of the evangelical work, will become less and less confined to one sect in its beneficial influence, and more and more a common property for edifying and quickening all the churches; and thus will be provided, or widely extended, a powerful antidote to an evil, the danger of which, as well as this remedy for it, was early discerned by the sagacious mind of Mr. Wesley, when, in the year 1742, he thus expressed himself:-"The thing which I was greatly afraid of, and which I resolved to use every possible method of preventing, was a narrowness of spirit, a party zeal, a being strait