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who never said unto the seed of Jacob, “Seek ye me in vain."*

“Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters.”+ Gospel blessings may well be called waters, from their rich abundance, from their purifying, fructifying, and refreshing quality. There is a sea of love and mercy, an ocean, into which the sins of believers are cast to appear no more for ever.

« Thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. “In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found : for I will pardon them whom I reserve.” If such blessings were vouchsafed to the ancient Church, when brought out of her captivity, what mercies are now in store for the Church of Christ militant, upon earth, when the Spirit shall be poured out in rich effusions upon all her members, when“ judgment shall run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream." ||

Then “ wisdom and knowledge will be the stability of our times.”** “Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.”+t Hostile nations “shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks ;" they shall learn war no more:If " for the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea."S$ Then Jesus will “speak peace to the heathen ; and his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth.”|| ||

And will this glory rise upon our earth, shrouded as it is with darkness? It will, for thus saith the Lord :

“ From the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same, my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense

* Isa. xlv. 19. + Isa. lv. 1. Micah vii. 19. & Jer. 1. 20. Il Amos v. 24.

** Isa. xxxiii. 6. tt Dan. xii. 4. tt Isa. ii. 4. SS Hab. ii. 14.

All Zech. ix. 10.

shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the Lord of hosts."*

The Jews shall then adore their long-neglected Messiah. Now, they are suffering under the fulfilment of this righteous judgment : “ The children of Israel shall abide many days (already amounting to nearly eighteen hundred years) without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice." But then, at this glorious period, when Jesus shall take unto him his great power, and reign as King supreme, it is graciously promised, “Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and DAVID THEIR KING; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.[

How inexpressibly precious are these prophecies respecting our fallen race. They are like the rainbow on the cloud. They assure us of mercy; that we shall not be destroyed by a deluge of wrath. But while they breathe loving-kindness, they call upon us to pray, to praise, to work with all our might, that we may become the honoured instruments in the hand of our God, for helping forwards, and hastening this reign of grace. God is pleased, in general, to work by means. He could preserve us without food, but this is not his appointment. He could bring about the world's regeneration by a single word, but this is not his plan. The Church of Christ is the medium through which he is pleased to communicate his blessings. For this end, he has appointed his ministers, as his ambassadors, as his stewards, as his labourers, as his watchmen. He commands all his people to work while it is day; to put forth all their powers, ere the night of death cometh.

“ There are two little words in our language." remarks that lamented Missionary, the Rev. John Williams, " which I always admired, try and trust. You know not what you can or cannot effect, until you try; and if you make your trials in the exercise

+ Hosea iii. 4,

Mal. i. 11.

of trust in God, mountains of imaginary difficulties will vanish as you approach them, and facilities will be afforded which you never anticipated.” What an encouragement is this for the Christian

When Christ said, “Stretch forth thine hand;" through faith, the man stretched out his withered hand, “and it was restored whole, like as the other.”* Let us implicitly obey the injunctions of our Lord. With the command he graciously imparts the power to labour, and the will to serve. He, who gives the command, makes his people willing in the day of his power. He imparts his consolations. He places underneath the everlasting arms. He enables them to endure unto the end ; and then gives them a crown of life, which fadeth not away.

If this be the end of the righteous, believers should not be afraid to die. Jesus hath declared, “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen ; and have the keys of hell and of death.”+ Blessed revelation ! Jesus, the Saviour, the Friend of sinners, hath the keys of the invisible world. If we wanted to enter into some place of security, or happiness, we should feel easy if we knew that the keys were in the possession of a Friend, who dearly loved us, and sought our highest felicity. We should not fear a repulse, when we came to knock for admittance. But how different would be our feelings, if these keys were in the hands of an implacable enemy, who sought our destruction; or in the hands of a sovereign, against whom we were living in open rebellion, and from whom we could expect nothing but death.

That a period of grace and glory, such as the Church has never yet experienced, will bless our world, is clearly revealed in the Scriptures of truth; but to determine the manner and circumstances of the reign of Christ is not required. “Secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us, and to our chil

+ Rev. i. 18.

• Matt. xii. 13.

dren."*

In the midst of tribulation, we have prophecies of glory, and promises of rest, to cheer us. We may never live to see those days of the Son of Man; but we may now, by faith, enjoy his presence in our souls; the indwelling of his Spirit in our hearts. We may now rest in the love of God; repose on the faithfulness of Christ; and be refreshed with joy and peace through the Holy Ghost.

If this be our happy experience, we need not perplex our minds, whether the reign of the Messiah will be personal or spiritual. We know that Christ shall “appear the second time, without sin, unto salvation. We know that he will come “ with clouds, and every eye shall see him."I But the mode of his coming must be determined by the glorious event, when, “ the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God."

0! Almighty Saviour, enlighten the eyes of my

understanding by the beams of thy Spirit. Enable me rightly to discern the truths of thy word. Suffer me not to reject thy revelations of glory, because I cannot comprehend them ; nor to cavil at the mysteries of thy grace, because I cannot explore them. Make my soul as a little child, humble, teachable, and obedient to thy will. Give me a heart to mourn over sin, both in myself and others; a heart to rejoice over thy mercies; a heart to love thee supremely, for all that thou art to me, as my present and everlasting Portion.

O do thou in mercy keep me from the evil that is in the world; from the errors which, like hemlock, grow in the gospel field ;-—thy visible Church. Preserve me from being led away by the opinions of men, however great in name, renowned for learning, or extolled for piety, if such opinions be repugnant to the plain declarations of thy word. Give me courage to reject, whatever opposes thy Truth, though it be

Deut. xxix. 29.; See Isa. xi. ; Rom. xi. ; Rev. xx.
+ Heb. ix. 28. # Rev. i. 7. § 1 Thess. iv. 16.

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silvered over with age, or be sanctioned by ancient Councils. May I never forget that I must be judged at thy tribunal; that the words which thou hast spoken shall judge me at the last day. Teach me, then, O Lord, to cease from man ; to place my whole reliance upon Thee; to follow, through the teaching of thy Spirit, the light of thy holy word.

0! Thou, who art the Light of the world, be thou my guide. Wherever I see thy footsteps, there may I plant my own. Shield me from the subtle attacks of Satan. Guard me against the flatteries and frowns of the world; and, when brought by thy grace to the brink of Jordan, conduct me in mercy through the rolling stream, till I reach thy blissful presence in the celestial Canaan. All praise to Sovereign Grace,

LXIII.-THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF-KNOWLEDGE.

" Let no man deceive himself.”_l Cor. iii. 18.

What a compound of contrarieties is this heart of mine! Heavenly Father ! how wonderful is thy forbearance; how amazing thy long-suffering. I

pray unto thee for humility. Thou graciously hearest my request; and puttest me into a situation where my pride is mortified and wounded. Do I then rejoice at perceiving such an answer to my prayer ? Alas! no. How are my feelings hurt; how do fretful complainings fill my breast.

Lord have mercy on so weak, so wretched a creature, and make me more sensible of the mercies I pray for, and more resigned to thy will.

grace of self-denial. In answer to my supplication thou givest me an opportunity of exercising this grace. Do I bless thee for this token of thy love? Do I cheerfully embrace this opportunity for self-denial ? Ah! no. My heart makes a

I pray for the

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