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revived: and Israel said, It is enough; Joseph my son is yet alive: I will go and see him before I die.
28 No sweeter joy to a parent's heart, than to be the guest of dutiful children.
The fifth Sunday in Lent.
MORNING. EXOD. iii.
2 God continually displays himself to his servants by the light of his Spirit in the heart. May he vouchsafe that light to thee now !
When we draw nigh in worship, let us put off every worldly affection fear of the world, and love of the
Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb. "And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. 5 And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy world, and whatever would lead us feet, for the place whereon from heartfelt devotion; rememberthou standest is holy ground. ing that we are in the more immeMoreover he said, I am the diate presence of the Holy One". God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. 70 what a consolatory thought! And the LORD said, I have the God of the Patriarchs is our surely seen the affliction of God! He who knew their sorrows, and came down to deliver them, my people which are in knoweth our sorrows, and came down Egypt, and have heard their from heaven to deliver us. cry by reason of their task8 Blessed be the prospect of our masters; for I know their heavenly Canaan! It is the land of sorrows; 8 and I am come angels and the spirits of the just down to deliver them out of made perfect: no sin, no sorrow, the hand of the Egyptians, but peace and rest await us there! and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites,
* Our affections are to the soul what our feet are to the body.
9 His ear is ever open to our cry also. None ever pray in vain who pray in spirit and in truth.
14 Wondrous name! unchangeable in Being and in attributes the same, yesterday, to-day, and for ever; our Redeemer and our God.
and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites. 'Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me: and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them. Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt. And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of 12 So with us! no duty so hard, but Egypt? 12 And he said, Cer- it is easy in his service! no danger tainly I will be with thee; so appalling, but that it is welcome and this shall be a token unto in doing the will of Him we love. thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain. And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM : and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations. Go, and gather the elders of Israel together, and say unto them, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me, saying, I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt: and I have said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt unto the land of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, unto a land flowing with milk and honey. And they shall hearken to thy voice and thou shalt come, thou and the elders of Israel, unto the king of Egypt, and ye shall say unto him, The LORD God of the Hebrews hath met with us: and now let us go, we beseech thee, three days' journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God. And I am sure that the king of Egypt will not let you go, no, not by a mighty hand. And I will stretch out my hand, and smite Egypt with all my wonders which I will do in the midst
21 Thus, to the end-the Lord can make even thine enemies to be at peace with thee. Make God thy —so shalt thou dwell in peace.
thereof: and after that he will let you go. 21 And I will give this people favour in the sight of the Egyptians and it shall come to pass, that, when ye go, ye shall not go empty: but every woman shall borrow of her neighbour, and of her that sojourneth in her house, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment and ye shall put them upon your sons, and upon your daughters; and ye shall spoil the Egyptians.
EVENING. EXODUS V.
AND afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness. And Pharaoh said, Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the LORD, neither will I let Israel go. And they said, The God of the Hebrews hath met with us: let us go, we pray thee, three days' journey into the desert, and sacrifice unto the LORD our God; lest he fall upon us with pestilence, or with the sword. And the king of Egypt said unto them, Wherefore do ye, Moses and Aaron, let the people from their works? get you unto your burdens. And Pharaoh said, Behold, the people of the land now are many, and ye make them rest from their burdens. And Pharaoh commanded the same day the taskmasters of the people, and their officers, saying, Ye shall no more give the people straw to make brick, as heretofore: let them go and gather straw for themselves. And the tale of the bricks, which they did make heretofore, ye shall lay upon them; ye shall not diminish ought thereof: for they be idle; therefore they cry, saying, Let us go and sacrifice to our God. Let there more work be laid upon the men, that they may labour therein; and let them not regard vain words. And the taskmasters of the people went out, and their officers, and they spake to the people, saying, Thus saith Pharaoh, I will not give you straw. Go ye, get you straw where ye can find it: yet not ought of your work shall be diminished.
2 If men will not know the Lord, how shall they obey his voice? yet without obedience there is no bless
ing. Acquaint then thyself with God.
the people were scattered abroad throughout all the
If you yield willingly to one sin— or burden-your spiritual foe will soon lay more work upon you. You will go from sin to sin.
12 Thus sin, a harder taskmaster deluding its slaves, causing them even than Pharaoh, is continually
to "take stubble instead of straw"
the semblance of enjoyment for its reality. Is it not so?
land of Egypt to gather stubble instead of straw. And the taskmasters hasted them, saying, Fulfil your works, your daily tasks, as when there was straw. And the officers of the children of Israel, which Pharaoh's taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and demanded, Wherefore have ye not fulfilled your task in making brick both yesterday and to day, as heretofore? Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried unto Pharaoh, saying, Wherefore dealest thou thus with thy servants? There is no straw given unto thy servants, and they say to us, Make brick: and, behold, thy servants are beaten; but the fault is in thine own people. But he said, Ye are idle, ye are idle: therefore ye say, Let us go and do sacrifice to the LORD. Go therefore now, and work; for there shall no straw be given you, yet shall ye deliver the tale of bricks. And the officers of the children of Israel did see that they were in evil case, after it was said, Ye shall not minish ought from your bricks of your daily task. And they met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way, as they came forth from Pha
raoh: " and they said unto them, The LORD look upon you, and judge; because ye have made our savour to be abhorred in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of his
21 When the ministers of God's word are urging upon the people to do his will, and obey his word, and trust in the divine promises, even under affliction and distress, how often are they met by reproof and taunts, as if they caused delay in God's answer to prayer, or held out delusive hopes to faith and patience!
servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us. And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Lord, wherefore hast thou so evil entreated this people? why is it that thou hast sent me? for since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all.
As often as ministers, thus tried, feel their souls sink within them, and are tempted to think their Heavenly Lord forsakes them in their work, let them rally their fainting courage, by remembering the sure mercies of the Almighty. If he hide himself, it is but for a season. Surely the people were delivered in his good time: they "triumphed gloriously." Let us tarry the Lord's leisure: then all will at last be well.
The sirth Sunday in Lent.
MORNING. EXODUS ix.
THEN the LORD said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh, and tell him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. For if thou refuse to let
them go, and wilt hold them still, 3behold, the hand of the LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon
3 How little do we consider, when our cattle in the field thrive, that it is because the hand of the Lord is upon them for good!
the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, be a very grievous murrain. 4 So, at his own set time, shall God separate the evil from the goodthe people who served him, and the people who served him not.
And the LORD appointed a LORD shall do this thing in • Murrains destroyed bulls, rams, he-goats. This was a marked and appropriate judgment: these were the objects of their worship.
7 Wickedness engenders pride, and pride, so gendered, at once blinds the understanding and hardens the heart towards both God and man.
and upon the sheep: there shall And the LORD shall sever between the cattle of Israel and the cattle of Egypt and there shall nothing die of all that is the children's of Israel. set time, saying, To morrow the the land. And the LORD did that thing on the morrow, and all the cattle of Egypt died: but of the cattle of the children of Israel died not one. "And Pharaoh sent, and, behold, there was not one of the cattle of the Israelites dead. And the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people go. And the LORD said unto Moses and unto Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace, and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heaven in the sight of Pharaoh. And it shall become small dust in all the land of Egypt, and shall be a boil breaking forth with blains upon man, and upon beast, throughout all the land of Egypt. 1o And they took ashes of the furnace, and stood before Pharaoh; and Moses sprinkled it up toward heaven; forth with blains upon man, and upon beast. 11 And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils; for the boil was upon the magicians, and upon all the Egyptians. And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had spoken unto Moses. And the LORD said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest
10 We have here an awful proof of the power of his wrath: let us ever be grateful for the daily proofs we have of the power of his mercy.
and it became a boil breaking
11 Boils caused by the ashes of the furnace in which human sacrifices had been offered. The Egyptians used to scatter the ashes to obtain a blessing. They now bring a curse.