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he once sat down with to cards, in company with a relation who had the care of him. My lord played very gravely until tired, which happened to be in the middle of a deal; he threw down his cards, and took his walk; and this the Major frequently calls the most rational game of cards hic ever played.”
THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST.
Mrs. S......, of Wendover, said to a lady who objected to her religious profession, "I trust, madam, I am not led by men as teachers, but by the Spirit of God.” “Spirit of God!" Exclaimed the lady; “Oh, we should not meddle with things so deep.” He who never meddles with things so deep, must needs be a shallow Christian. “For if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”
THE ADVICE OF A FATHER DIFFERENT FROM THAT
OF JESUS CHRIST. WHEN J.... S....., a young man at Alfriston, embraced the gospel, and made open profession of it, his father, not a little offended at his conduct Herein, gave him this sage advice; "James, you should first get yourself established in a good trade and then think of, and determine aboutre. ligion.” “Father," replied James, “Christ advises me very differently. He says, Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven, and the righteousness thereof, and all these things shall be added unto you.” How many fathers differ from Jesus Christ in their judgment about religion and its importance! Christ says first; but many say last.
AN UNSEARCHABLE PROVIDENCE. .....DR. DODDRIDGE.
An event of a public uncommon nature, says Mr. Orton, in which he was particularly concerned, deserves to be related as an evidence of his great benevolence, and for the sake of the useful reflections he makes upon it; “April 5th, 1711. At our assize last month, one Bryan Connell, an Irish Papist, was convicted of the murder of Richard Brymley, of Weedon, about two years ago. The evidence against him at his trial seemed full and strong; but it chiefly depended on the credit of an infamous woman, who owned she had lived with him in adultery some years. There were some remarkable circumstances in the course of the trial, in which I thought the Providence of God wonderfully appeared. The prisoner told a long story of himself: but it was so ill supported, that I imagine no one person in court believed it. I visited him after his convic. tion, with a compassionate view to his eternal concerns; but instead of being able, by any remonstrances, to per. suade him to confess the fact, I found him fixed in a most resolute denial of it. He continued to deny it the next day with such solemn, calm, but earnest appeals to heaven, and fervent cries that God would inspire some with the belief of bis innocence, that I was much impressed. As he desired to leave with me, at the time of his execution, a paper, in which he would give an account of the places where, and the persons with whom he was, when the mur. der was committed, I was so struck with the affair, that I obtained time of the under sheriff to make inquiry into the truth of what he had told me. Having sent a wise and faithfui friend to Whitchurch and Chester,to examine the evidence he appealed to, I found every circumstance which the convict had asserted, proved; and the concurrent tes. timony of five credible persons attested that he was in Cheshire when the murder was committed. These testi. monies I laid before the judge by whom he was condemn. ed, for the deliverance of what, in my conscience I believ. ed, and do still believe, to beinnocent blood. But the judge did not think himself warranted to reprieve him, as the evidence given against him by the wicked woman was ma. terially confirmed by two other witnesses; and because he thought the most dangerous consequences might attend such an examination of the affair as I proposed. The convict was accordingly executed! I had labored with unwearied pains and zeal, both for the deliverance of his life, and the salvation of his soul. What made the case more affecting to me was, that nothing could be more ten. der than his expressions of gratitude, and nothing more cheerful than his hope of deliverance had been. Among other things, I remember he said, 'Every drop of my blood thanks you.' He wished he might before he died, have leave to kneel at the threshold of my door, to pray for me and mine. ‘You,' said he, 'art my redeemer, in one sense (a poor, impotent redeemer!) and you have a right to me. If I live, I am your property, and I will be a faithful sub. ject.' The manner in which he spoke of what he prom. ised himself from my friendship, if he had been spared, was exceedingly natural and touching. Upon the whole, I never passed through a more striking scene. may teach me the following lessons: 1st. To adore the awful justice of God in causing this unhappy creature thus infamously to fall by her with whom he had so scandalously
sinned, to the ruin of a very loving and virtuous wife. Thus God made his own law effectual, that the adulterer should die. 2dly. To acknowledge the depthsof the divine coun. sels; which in this affair, when I think on all the circum. stances of it, are to me impenetrable. 3dly. To continue resolute in well doing, though I should be, as in this in. stance I have been, reproached and reviled for it. Some have said, that I am an Irish Papist; others have used very contemptuous language, and thrownout base censures for my interposing in this affair; though I am in my con. science persuaded, that to have neglected that interposition, in the view I then had of things, would have been the most criminal part in my whole life. 4thly. May I not learn from it gratitude to Him, who hath redeemed and deliver. ed me? In which, alas! How far short do I fall of this poor creature! How eagerly did he receive the news of a reprieve for a few days! How tenderly did he express his gratitude! That he should be mine! That I might do what I pleased with him! That I had bought him! Spoke of the delight with which he should see and serve me! That he would come once a year from one end of the kingdom to the other, to see and thank me, and should be glad never to go out of my sight! 0, why do not our hearts overflow with such sentiment on an occasion infi. nitely greater! We are all dead men. Execution would soon have been done upon us; but Christ has redeemed us to God by his blood. We are not merely reprieved, but pardoned; not merely pardoned, but adopted; made heirs of eternal glory, and near the borders of it. In consequeno of all this we are not our oren, but bought with a price. May wc glorify God in our bodies and spirits, which are
LEARN TO STOOP.
[Related in a letter from Dr. Franklin to Dr. S. Mather.] “Tue last time I saw your father was in 1724. Oo taking my leave, he shewed me a shorter way out of the house, through a narrow passage, which was crossed by a beam over head. We were still talking as I withdrew,he accompanying me behind, and I turning toward him when he said hastily, Stoop! STOOP! I did not understand him till I felt my head hit against the beam.
He was a man who never missed an occasion of giving instruction; and upon this he said to me, You are young, and have the world before you; Stoop as you go through it, and you will miss many hard thumps. This advice, thus beat into my head, has frequently been of use to me; and I often think of it when I see pride mortified, and misfortunes brought npon people, by their carrying their hcads too high."
A STRING OF COMPARISONS.
Ilow brittle is glass, and how slipp’ry the ice!
How fleeting a shadow....a bubble how thin!
Are the joys of the world, and the pleasures of sin.
How glorious the sun, and how pure is the light!
How firm is the rock, and how boundless the sea!
Are the blessings, Religion, created hy thee.