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trust our souls, our bodies, our families, was not then invented; but beautiful our business, our all, with this prayer- copies of the Psalms, Moses, and the answering God.
Prophets were written by the scribes ; Now let us look to the only instance and though it cost a good deal, yet they recorded in the Bible of prayer being had a copy. Rich men often go to great offered to a saint, and we shall see that it expense for a beautiful library, as an affords but very faint encouragement to ornament to their mansions; but that those who pray to St. Nicolas, or St. does not imply that they read the books. Peter, or the blessed Virgin Mary. Many men will be condemned by their
“The rich man died, and was buried; own neglected Bibles another day. and in hell he lifted up his eyes, being There were five of the rich man's in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, brethren still living; and he knew their and Lazarus in his bosom; and he cried, character. Oh, send Lazarus to my five and said, father Abraham, haye mercy brethren! Why, what is the matter? on me, and send Lazarus, that he may They wear purple and fine linen, and fare dip the tip of his finger in water, and sumptuously every day. They keep dogs, cool my tongue; for I am tormented in too, which are very kind, and lick the this flame.” Here we see he first prayed afflicted man's sores. What is the matter! about his tongue; but it is useless: then Oh, they are all going to hell. I know, he goes on. “I pray thee, therefore, by bitter experience, where their conduct father, that thou wouldst send him to will lead. One out of six is quite enough my father's house : for I have five to become the companion of the devil brethren; that he may testify unto them, and his angels. Five sons going to hell! lest they also come into this place of tor- Oh, what a wretched man must their ment." But it wont do. No, no. The father be! We think so. But perhaps saints cannot answer prayer. There are the father was not alarmed about it; three things in this prayer which demand perhaps he enjoyed “the pleasures of our consideration.
sin" as much as his sons ; perhaps he First. The place where it was offered. had trained them to it. But the soul, It was in hell.
who is in hell, is alarmed. Oh, send By the light of the flames of the bot Lazarus to my brethren, to warn them. tomless pit, he began to see that what this looks benevolent; but some have the Bible says is true : “The wicked thought there is no benevolent feeling in shall be turned into hell, and all the na- hell; and therefore his prayer was selfisk. tions that forget God.” By the torment He was alarmed at their coming to hell, of that flame he began to feel that what lest they might add to bis misery. the Bible said is true : “There the worm The apostle Paul anticipated an indieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” crease of joy in heaven, by meeting with “The smoke of their torments ascendeth his converts there. “For what is our up for ever and ever?" Oh, “who can hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are dwell with devouring flames? who can not even ye in the presence of our Lord dwell with everlasting burnings!" This Jesus Christ at his coming. For ye are was a fearful discovery, when it was too our glory and joy.” And does not every late.
godly minister look forward to the same Secondly. The nature of this prayer. pure delight? Does not every devout It looks benevolent. Send Lazarus to my Sunday-school teacher anticipate the same father's house, for I have five brethren, joy? It seems to me that half the joys that he may testify to them, lest they of heaven will arise from meeting those also come into this place of torment. there who first led us to Christ, or from What a house this was! Think! There seeing those there whom we have helped was a copy of the Old Testament, per- to glory. Surely every Christian should fectly disregarded. The art of printing be animated to seek the conversion of sinners, if it were only for the increase for all the purposes of Divine mercy, of felicity which it will bring to their what shall we say to these things ? glorified spirits in heaven.
WhyOn the same ground, it is reasonable 1. We fear that, notwithstanding all to suppose that every drunkard, every the warnings that Protestants have on sabbath-breaker, every swearer, every these subjects, there are many who will fornicator, every sinner, who has cor- not begin to pray until it is too late; rupted and ruined the souls of his fellow- too late, not merely to pray to angels, creatures, will feel fresh anguish at every but to God himself. new arrival in the bottomless pit of those
“ Now is the time he bends his ear, whom they helped thither. Oh, it must
And waits for your request." be tremendous to meet those in hell whom they have dragged down! Each Yes! the time may come, even in this of them will prove an additional sting in world, when it will be in vain to pray. the worm that never dies. What dreadful Reader! think of the words of the Bible: foreboding for ungodly men !
“Because I called, and ye refused; I Thirdly. To whom this prayer was ad- have stretched out my hand, and no man dressed ?
regarded : but ye have set at nought all To father Abraham.—This holy pa- my counsel, and would none of my retriarch was considered just such a patron proof; I also will laugh at your calamity. for wicked and superstitious Jews, as St. I will mock when your fear cometh: Nicolas for the Greeks, and St. Peter for when your fear cometh as desolation, and the Roman Catholics. But Abraham re- your destruction cometh as a whirlwind : jected the prayer altogether. A drop of when distress and anguish cometh upon water you shall not have. Your brethren you, then shall they call upon me, but I shall have no messenger from the other will not answer : they shall seek: me world sent unto them. No! Let them early, but they shall not find me.” Dear read their Bible ; let them study the reader, what does this mean? O consider, Bible ; let them pray over the Bible ; and seek the Lord while he may be let them believe the Bible : for, if they found-call upon him while he is near. believe not Moses and the prophets, nei- 2. How deplorable is the state of those ther will they believe though one rose countries where the people are religiously from the dead.
taught to worship saints and angels, This is one proof among many, that instead of applying directly to the only the Bible, and the Bible alone, is suffi- mediator, Christ Jesus. By far the larger cient for all the purposes of Divine mercy. part of Christendom are trained in this
It has everything enlightening in it: soul-destroying heresy. The image of “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and the Virgin with a babe in her arms, is a light unto my path."
stuck up in all public places of conIt has everything sharp and pointed in course, to catch the eye of the poor it: for the word of God is quick and priest-ridden people, to draw out their powerful, and sharper than any two- money. A box is usually placed close to edged sword, piercing even to the divid- the image, for offerings. This, in plain ing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the English, is, " A highway robbery box." joints and marrow, and is a discerner of The priests say it is right, and the blinded the thoughts and intents of the heart. people love to have it so. Poor creatures !
It has everything awful and alarming they are glad to get to heaven by any in it: “Is not my word like a fire, saith means, though it be through the lid of the Lord; and a hammer which breaketh the highway robbery box? the rock in pieces,"
3. What an amount of guilt must rest Seeing, then, that prayer to the saints upon those persons who attempt to stop is useless, and the Bible is sufficient I the circulation of God's book!
“They have Moses and the prophets," rious Redeemer; and the British and says Abraham, “let them hear them.” Foreign Bible Society, listening to his “ Search the Scriptures,” says the Lord voice, stood up and said, “We will preJesus Christ, “ for they testify of me." | pare thy book, O Lord, in every language -"No," said the Russian clergy, "you under heaven, and put a copy of it into shall not have the book—come to us;'. every man's hand;"_“No you shall and they stopped the Russian Bible So- | not,” said men of great ecclesiastical ciety. Yes—in one fatal day came out renown, and they opposed it with all the decree, to stop the printers—to stop their might. But, blessed be God, they the binders—to stop the translators—to are converted, or dead, or ashamed, or stop the Bible! and hundreds of thou- silenced, or powerless, for the work is sands of copies, or parts of copies of going on-never were there such faciliGod's book, were shut up in warehouses, ties for its circulation-never so many for the damp to rot some, and the mothtokens of the approbation of God! to devour others !
4. What immense multitudes of saint“ Search the Scriptures," says the Lord worshipping Christians are at this moment Jesus Christ, "for they testify of me." appealing to the compassion of those who “No," says the Pope, "you shall not. worship the living and prayer-hearing If you have a New Testament, deliver it God! There, misery cries, “Come over up to your priest, that he may destroy it to Ireland and help us "-"Come over
-but if you refuse, you shall be cursed to Russia, and help us "_"Come over from off the altar, by bell, book, and to France and Portugal and Italy to candle-light." A pitiful threat, indeed, help us ; for image worship is a delusion, to an enlightened and established Chris- and prayers for the dead are deceiving tian; but a fearful curse to an ignorant the living ; and the vain expectations of man, who thinks that a fellow-worm in heaven are exchanged for the torments of priest's garments can regenerate his chil- hell! O, come OVER AND HELP us." dren, pardon his sins, and send him either Amen.
RICHARD KNILL, to heaven or to hell.
Tabernacle, Wootton-under-edge. “ Search the Scriptures," says the glo- !
THE SABBATH. One of the greatest blessings God has | ing the week, on this day joins them conferred on man is the sabbath. It around his homely fire. Such is the may be considered
effect of association, that the very aspect 1. As a cessation from labour. What of nature seems hallowed on this day; a slavery would life be without the sab. , a sacred tinge seems to rest on every bath. There would be no rest for either flower, on every leaf, on every blade of man or beast; no intermission in the grass. duties and avocations of life; life itself 2. The sabbath may also be considered would be one continued round of toil as a season of peculiar privileges. from the cradle to the grave. But there
“ This is the day the Lord hath made; is a day of rest given in mercy to man;
He calls the hours his own." and how delightful is the repose of the sabbath on this day. The din of busi But with what different feelings do men ness is no longer heard in the city; the hail the approach of this sacred day. To plough lies motionless in the field; the some it only presents a day of worldly tired horse, released from the yoke, pleasure; to others a day of business, roams at large; and the peasant, who who, though their shops or offices may has been separated from his family dur- | be closed, devote the day to travelling
or correspondence; and to many it is a “ Far from my thoughts, vain world, begone; day of weariness. They long for the
Let my religious hours alone." tedious hours to be gone; but with what But the world will not be gone; worldly different feelings does the Christian hail thoughts' intrude themselves into his the approach of this day. No sooner do mind. He may charge them to stay at its sacred hours dawn upon him, than he the foot of the mount, while he ascends exclaims
to hold communion with his heavenly
Father, but they will not stay; so that * Welcome, sweet day of rest, That saw the Lord arise ;
he is compelled to exclaim,
" When I Welcome to this reviving breast, would do good, evil is present with me.” And these rejoicing eyes.
But no sin or imperfection shall ever “ The king himself comes near,
tarnish the duties of the heavenly sabAnd feasts his saints to-day;
bath. " There shall be no more the Here we may sit, and see bim here, Canaanite in the house of the Lord of
And love, and praise, and pray." hosts." “ Nothing shall enter that deThis day frees him from a vain world, fileth, or that worketh abomination, or and calls him to the house of prayer,
that maketh a lie." There will be no the scene of his dearest associations, body of sin to clog, no world to allure, his highest enjoyments, and his holiest no enemy to annoy, no coidness, no desires. The sanctuary is open ; the
barrenness, no spiritual desertion, no word of life is expounded; Jehovah wandering thoughts, no doubts or fears. comes down, and communes with his No, the Christian will have laid aside people from off the mercy seat, and they his armour, and have entered into the are made glad. Here he spreads the joy of his Lord. banquet of his love, and says, “ Eat, O
“() glorious hour! O blest abode ! friends! Drink, yea, drink abundantly, I shall be near and like my God; O beloved !" And they do eat and
And Alcsh and sin no more control drink, and exclaim with the church of
The sacred pleasures of the soul." old, “ I sat down under his shadow with The heavenly sabbath is eternal in its great delight, and his fruit was sweet to duration ; here the sabbath is soon over. my taste. He brought me to his ban. The Christian may exclaiın, with Peter, quetting house, and his banner over me
“ Lord, it is good to be here;” but le was love." And with the patriarch, must again descend the mount, and have "Surely this is none other than the house to combat with the things of time and of God, it is the gate of heaven.”
But it will not be so there: 3. The sabbath may also be considered there “ they serve God day and night in as a type and emblem of heaven.
his temple;" there "Day of all the seven the best ;
“ Congregations ne'er break up, Emblem of eternal rest.”
And sabbaths never end." Yes, there remaineth a rest (or a sab.
“ Him that overcometh will I make a batism), the keeping of a sabbath to the pillar in the temple of my God, and he people of God; but how different is the shall go no more out.” No, the believer heavenly sabbath from the sabbath on
will have joined the anthems of the earth! The heavenly sabbath is perfect upper temple, and will be for ever en. in its nature, and eternal in its duration. gaged in ascribing " Salvation to Him It is perfect in its nature. What imper- that sitteth upon the throne, and unto fections attend the believer in the per- the Lamb, for ever and ever." formance of his most sacred duties here.
ONESIPHORUS. Often when he enters the sanctuary, he exclaims,
CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP. Genuine religion, “ the life of God in privilege is enjoyed, by means of the influthe soul,” originates in its possessors an ence of the Holy Spirit, in acts of devotion, elevated spirit, with the purest and the by intercourse with God. Thus it was, also, most enlarged good will to all mankind. that, among the antediluvian patriarchs, It produces in the renewed heart, regard- “ by faith Enoch walked with God;" and ing others, that "charity to the soul that, “before his translation he had this which is the soul of charity.” The testimony that he pleased God," Heb. xi.5. apostle John, therefore, with heaven- In this way pious men desire constant born charity, for which he was so pre- supplies of heavenly wisdom, to undereminently distinguished, calls attention stand the things of salvation," and to the spirit and privileges of the gospel :"search the deep things of God.” Thus, “That which we have seen and heard also, “the Spirit seals them to the day declare we unto you, that ye also may of redemption ;" “ the Spirit itself bearhave fellowship with us : and truly our ing witness with their spirit, that they fellowship is with the Father, and with are the children of God," Rom. vii. 16. his son Jesus Christ,” 1 John i. 3. From this exercise of mind, and this influ
These significant words, exhibit the ence upon their hearts, poor mortal creagenius of Christianity, and show it to be
tures, enjoy the unspeakable felicity of infinitely superior to every form of hea- fellowship with God. then or infidel morality. They indicate CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP is “ with his a largeness of heart peculiar to the pos- Son Jesus Christ." This high privilege sessor of Divine grace. Fellowship here is experienced in the ways of holiness, means common interest, or participation, by all the children of God, through regarding the blessedness and enjoyment heartfelt reliance on the perfect atoneof the grace of God, with life eternal and ment and righteousness of the Redeemer. immortal glory. From this, it is evident While conscious of personal unworthithat the privileges of Christians, enjoying ness, and of inability to do the will of friendship with God, through Christ, are God, by faith in the promises of salvathe most precious; that their honours, as tion, they enjoy satisfaction of heart, and the adopted children of the Most High, are prepared, each to say with the apos“sons and daughters of the Lord Al- tle, “Christ liveth in me; and the life mighty," are most ennobling; and that that I now live in the flesh, I live by the their prospects, as heirs of eternal salva- faith of the Son of God, who loved me, tion, are most encouraging. It was with and gave himself for me," Gal. ii. 20. rapture, therefore, that the apostle John Reflecting on the covenant engagements burst forth with the exclamition, of the Son of God, “ before the foundahold what manner of love the Father tion of the world,” and on his meritorihath bestowed upon us, that we should ous work in human nature, as our medibe called the sons of God. Beloved, now ator and high priest; and, contemplating are we the sons of God; and it doth his exalted state at the right hand of not yet appear what we shall be! but we the Father, appearing as our advocate know that when he shall appear, we shall and intercessor, believers rejoice in his be like him ; for we shall see him as he blessed name and offices : because that is," 1 John iii. 1, 2.
through Him they enjoy pardon, adopCHRISTIAN Fellowship is with God tion, sanctification, and life eternal, they the Father. It consists in free and de- look up to Him as “ Head over all things lightful access to him, in his new cove- to the church,” for all needful supplies nant character as our God, taking us, by of grace, in every period of trial; bea sovereign act of grace, into his blessed cause they learn, that "it hath pleased family, through Jesus Christ. This high the Father that in Him should all fulness