and common happiness. He returned a few months | Jesus was coming, went and met him, but Mary after, and what an altered scene did he behold! sat still in the house." How touching an instance of human fragility and It was in perfect accordance with Martha’s alert earthly change! He who had been the light and and ardent character that, the moment she heard stay of that happy home was gone. Four days that He whom they had expected so long was before, he had departed to take possession of an- come at last, she hastened, without pausing to other dwelling; for four days he had been the communicate even with the sister of her bosom, tenant of the tomb, and over his empty place to meet and to accost him. Her first salutation around the household-board, beside the household strikingly shewed the mixture and tumult of hearth, the shadow of death was settled like a emotion which reigned within her heart, the depth cloud. The sad sisters, however, had not been and copiousness of her sisterly affection and sisleft to muse and weep in solitude. From the terly regrets, the deep persuasion which she cheneighbouring city a numerous band of visitors had rished of the Master's power to have delivered been collected in the house of mourning, attracted and preserved his friend, and the shade of sinful thither, probably, as on such occasions is wont to suspicion with which her faith and reverence tobe the case, by various motives, some finding a ward Jesus was alloyed in regard to the kindness certain attraction in the stimulus and the excite- of his recent procedure,—“ Lord, if thou hadst ment of the scene, melancholy as it was in its been here, my brother had not died.” In the first source and in its character,—some, with more sin- excitement of her emotions, produced by the sight cere than rightly-judging affection, endeavouring of Jesus, all her feelings rushed out without reto pour into the reluctant ear the commonplaces or serve,—without control, even the obscure impresearthly consolation which, but that they were well sion which, in an hour of greater self-command, and kinolly meant, might have provoked from the she would not, perhaps, have ventured to express, mourners' feelings Job's embittered exclamation, the impression which had lain for four days at “ Miserable comforters are ye all,”—and some, it her heart, infusing double bitterness into the may be hoped, who knew better whence to draw fount of sorrow springing there, as if the Masavailing comfort

, seeking to direct the sufferers' ter's dealings had been somewhat less than friendmind to the perpetuity of the Eternal's promises, | ly. No sooner, however, had she pronounced the flourishing in immortal strength and loveliness, words, than she seems to have perceived and rewhile, like the flowers of the field, individuals and gretted the insinuation they implied, and, correctfamilies, and the race of man itself, withered from ing herself, she adds, “ But know, that even before him, endeavouring to kindle or revive with now, whatsoever thou shalt ask of God, God in their hearts that hope which alone is deathless will give it thee.” She recollected that Jesus amidst a dying world. Amidst the circle of sym- had resources enough, at once in his own miracupathising friends, essaying thus their various powers lous power, and in his all-prevailing intluence of consolation, sat Mary with dejected counten- with the Omnipotent, to find relief and consolaance and glistening eye, absorbed in her own me- tion for his friends, even in that hour of profound, lancholy musings ; Martha most probably having and, in ordinary cases, hopeless desolation. She left her meditative sister to preside amidst the did not venture to shape her wishes into words, circumstance and stateliness of grief, while she lest the request should seem presumptuous. She employed herself elsewhere, and found, perhaps, a knew that the penetrating eye which rested upon useful distraction to her mind from the monotony her with the glance of compassionate inquiry, of sorrow, in the direction of those domestic ar- could read the dim imagination which rose within rangements which were so congenial to her cha- her heart, and obscurely pictured to her fancy the racter, and which, however interrupted for a sea- vision of her brother recovered, by a mightier mirason by the shock of death and funeral within a cle than ever Jesus had yet achieved, from the grasp house, must presently resume their course, mak- of the inexorable grave. She was well persuaded ing the nothingness of man more pathetically vi- that even this was possible to Christ, if it was right; sible, seeing that the chasm which his departure but, feeling more truly than when she began to makes in the train and succession of the most speak, her own place in reference to Jesus,—aware ordinary circumstances so speedily closes again, that she had no right to dictate or prescribe to and all things go on even as before, though he one so infinitely wise and infinitely kind, she exhas “ a part no longer in all that is done under changes the tone of querulous complaint, and rethe sun.” Certain it is, that Martha was so placed, flection on the best of friends, for the more and so occupied, when Jesus arrived in the neigh- seemly one of submissive suggestion to his supebourhood of Bethany, that tidings of his approach rior wisdom and superior love. were conveyed to her without at the same time The reply of Jesus to the complaints and sugreaching her sister's ear. It seems obvious from gestions of the disconsolate Martha, is one among the 28th verse, that the first intelligence of the a thousand instances to teach us, that “we have Saviour's coming which Mary received, was that not in him an high priest who cannot be touched which Martha sent her after having seen the Lord, with the feeling of our infirmities,” but one whose and that we are not to ascribe the conduct of the heart is as tender to sympathise as his word is former to indifference or sullenness, when we are powerful to console. « Thy brother," he says, told that “ Martha, as soon as she heard that shall rise again.” He withdraws the mourner's mind from sorrowful reflection on what might have then, perfection comes. One example shall sufbeen, to the joyful anticipation of what is to be. fice. The passage where the apostle so gloriously It seems very obvious that, in using expressions expands, for the use of other Christians, the conso very general as those here recorded, our Lord centrated consolation which Jesus addressed to could not expect, and therefore did not intend, Martha, when he said, “ Thy brother shall rise that they should be regarded by Martha as con- again : _" But I would not have you to be ignoveying a direct promise that he should, that very rant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, day, by a special act of his omnipotence, raise her that ye sorrow not even as others which have no brother from the dead ; and that, therefore, the hope. For if we believe that Jesus died, and rose consolation they were intended to convey, is that again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will which all Christians are entitled to draw concern- God bring with him. For this we say unto you ing those who “sleep in Jesus,” from the prospect by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive of the blessed resurrection of all such to life eter- and remain unto the coming of the Lord, shall nal. And it is a thought overtlowing with most not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord copious and most abundant comfort, in reference himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, to all who have departed in the Lord, that the with the voice of the archangel, and with the time is coming, coming certainly, when even their trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise chill and darkened dust, which we committed to first : Then we which are alive and remain shall the tomb in weakness, and dishonour, and corrup- be caught up together with them in the clouds, to tion, shall spring again to light, mighty, majestic, meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever incorruptible-bright with the image of their Lord, be with the Lord.” “ Wherefore," as the apostle and clothed with the robes of immortality. It is adds, “ comfort one another with these words,”true that, as Martha intended to suggest in her re- and so live, that ye may leave surviving mourners ply, “ I know that he shall rise again at the last such blessed cheer and consolation when


die. day,” the period appointed for that magnificent event lies still at a mighty interval before us. THE FAMILY OF THE DRUNKARD; That period is the last day,”--the closing day

A SKETCH. of this world's history,—when “ the mystery of By The Rev. Thomas DIMMA, A.M., God shall be finished,”—when the era of change,

Minister of Queensferry. and convulsion, and preparation, shall terminate, and that of fixed, unchanging destinies commence.

The strong and prevailing tendency to indulge in se Before that day of consummation dawn, ages may times. It'militates against every scheme of benevolence

rituous liquors, is one of the momentous signs of the succeed to ages, and long millenniums roll their devised for the amelioration of mankind, and scatters in mighty years; and considering this, it may some- the winds the efforts, which zeal, for the interests of times be felt as if the consolation which the pros- vital religion, employs to instil and disseminate the pect of that day supplies were drawn from too re- principles of a sound and operative morality. Many a mote a source to be so precious and effectual as

fair plan, in embryo, is prevented from being developed, we could desire. Let it, therefore, serve, O Chris- and even when measures have been taken to carry it

out, in the fulness of an attractive superstructure, tbe tian, mourning for a Christian brother, to bring workman is compelled to retire and escape from the the consolation nigh thee, to reflect that, to his wreck of his own goodly devices. Nothing really bebodiless spirit, all the period intervening between neficial can be accomplished, when the powers, which the hour of death and the hour of resurrection is God hath bestowed upon man, are vitiated and unhingei a period of blissful repose and exulting expecta- the innate depravity of the human heart, is too powe

by the operations of a cause, whose agency, united with tion. Yet let it never be forgotten, that even this ful to be successfully met by the single-handed exerziens estate of the holy dead, serene and blessed though of one solitary mind. As soon as the taste for interiit be beyond imagination, is but imperfect and pre- cating liquors is acquired and strengthened by halin paratory—that even to the souls in paradise, great indulgence, the only avenues by which the heart can be part of their felicity consists in the sure and cer- successfully approached is shut. There is no prototain hope of a day before them, when “ that which bility that the man, who delights to riot in vicious are is in part shall be done away, and that which is that experience is qualified to give, or yield to ide in

cess, should have an ear open to receive the counse's perfect shall have come,”—when, in their whole vitations that the benevolent mind is willing to press... nature, they shall be wholly pure, and wholly glo- Every apology for indulgence being readily embraced rious, and wholly happy_when, in body and soul, and companions crowding to deepen attachment to the they shall have their perfect consummation and intoxicating draught, there is little wonder that the bliss, and that mode and order of existence shall tread of the drunkard should be visibly impressed where begin which shall never terminate, and never negligent of his person,—his clothes are covered wita

ever he advances.... He is marked gradually becours change, world without end. It is for this reason, shreds and patches, - his countenance betrays the pallj we apprehend, that not only our Saviour in the hue of confirmed dissipation-bis gait is burried and text, but the holy writers in general, when they in the moments most favourable for exertion—he betra's have occasion to allude to the future glory of be- the languor and inefficiency of an unhinged trane. lievers, as the source either of motive or of con

Stimulants afresh are plied with unsparing hands, ar solation, almost unifornily refer forwards, over the feeble and pointless exertion. His ear is open to er

the strength unnaturally acquired, is again wasted state of intermediate being, to what they emphati- invitation, and resists the repeated efforts emplove to çally term “ that day,” because then, and not till destroy its power. The eye watches with superesse

acuteness, the motions made from a distance by the as. worn and mangled by unfair use--or not replaced sociate, whom no other link binds but the habit of oc- through the ill directed management of the proceeds cupying the same place, and raising, in unholy triumph, of former labour.... Or, piled in corners-mark, what the poisoned cup to the greedy lips.—What a grasping might guide a firm hand—and furnish employment for of hands and what professions of eternal friendship! | industrious occupation,-now you may detect the rusty The very atmosphere in which they breathe, though sword—the fatal tube plied against gliding hare or polluted by corrupting additions, is pronounced health- gaudy pheasant—the bag for concealment, or the noose

ful and exhilarating, the narrow chamber with its to destroy.... Furniture once_but now its very wreck.... i

tawdry or disjointed furniture, is again and again filled, The drawers of happy marriage day_divested of their

the tale, more than twice told, is again repeated--and finery,—the gay crockery--now solitary spectres.... listened to with fresh zest.

You ask-where rests the wearied limbs of this victim But the drunkard has a home-he has a wife-he has of dissipation ? his bed—a dreary resting-place-there a young family, for whom, under the most solemn obli- filth, undisturbed, hath taken up its abode, and the eye, gations, he is bound to provide. This sad dwelling he sickened at the sight, retires from the uninviting specrevisits under the guidance of a clouded intellect-or tacle. No hand has been applied to turn the long conducted thither by the help of his miscalled friends. pressed pillow-and no care employed to remove the If he walks forth alone-his groping and sideway move- stains of many repeated scenes of beastly intoxication! ments_after many melancholy mishaps, conduct him to In such a dwelling, the Bible might be conceived a his resting-place.--If his associates bring him to his stranger,—but it is there—the draught that hath swaldwelling—the hour of consciousness being past the slow lowed up all others-hatb spared it. Around the name, progress of time must await the resuscitation of his dor

or very aspect of the book —a feeling of veneration homant faculties. He awakes from his dream--with a vers—which keeps, in undisturbed seclusion, the Bible fever in his veins,-over his frame the deadening torpor as the family record—or allows it to escape, as the tatof mental and bodily debasement hath been spread,-with tered remains of many a scholastic hour of early dis

its slow departure, there comes, in equally slow progress, cipline.-— With dusty cover-or blackened page-it is of the resumption of power jaded and worn out,-muscular gradually, and from each side, hurrying on—to meet—in

action recovered, after the unnatural struggle of con- the work of central dilapidation. Or the drunkard tending energies. Strength hath been wasted on empty may preserve his volume still spared—which a deceasair—and before the lingering remains of native energy ed parent valued-he speaks of it-but knows not its can be called into action--the time of useful exertion contents--it is preserved to tell of parents honoured bath passed away.

and pious, of whom he reports himself sprung. On his The appetite loathes food, and the arts of culinary tenguemthere may linger--the early imparted lessonskill-strangers to the dwellings of the drunkard—if they but in the sounds emitted--there comes forth the scatcould be employed, cannot revive the languid powers.... tered fragments of an ill arranged and disordered mind. The very act of the simplest preparation of the humble In this doleful dwelling there are children, but on meal, nauseates.- -Its odours-deaden the slender awak- pale cheek and weak limbs_they transmit the germs of ening desire for food, and the drowsy victim of intem- their degraded parentage. Familiar with disorder, their perance_in melancholy inanition_looks forward on a birthright portion—they increase it by continual fretful day, for whose duties he is entirely unfit.... He keeps contributions. No sound of tenderness is heard there. his chair--the mutilated remains of many mishaps.--It The maddening scowl, instead of the affectionate look--is unstable like himself—its joints are loosened—its sur- the harsh word, instead of the tender expression,—the face is rough--the auxiliary nail, by which it is fastened- curse for the blessing,—the blow for the touch of kindrises up to punish the hand or the limb that touches its ness and the passionate exclusion from the presenceunsubdued head. The door, once smooth, is hollowed instead of the tender invitation to enjoy it. The drunkout by repeated excavations, which sloven hands have ard thinks not of the immortal souls over which had no leisure to fill. The fire-place, once the scene God hath given him to watch on this deeply solemn of comfort, betrays the inroads of many an ill directed subject—he bestows no thought—and the sight of his blow. But the warm hearth,-genial heat is banished, children hurrying onwards to perdition-brings no tear -coal cannot be procured, -the tall remains of a stray into bis eyes.-0h—he has never learned to pray—or he stake,-a floated beam--or a pilfered gate-in decaying has forgotten the first lesson pious parents delighted grandeur-court the dying embers.... Mark the scatter- to give. He hears no Sabbath bells, and with him, also, ed kettles,—the unwashen margins,—the potato with an untutored family slumbers in the unawakened apathy its fragments,--the table with its scattered utensils,- of a dread indifference! Disease comes, and death. the fish, in remaining skeleton,--the water, in mean- comes a temporary season of reflection followed speedi. dering stream,—the untidy vessel,—the broken crystal ly—by the cup more eagerly plied—and the deadening Lor the lonely glass—the open recipient of the pesti- draught more greedily swallowed. lential draught !Are there animals in this sickening Over the land—intoxication stalks with giant stridesabode? Here see the cat-ghastly spectre to which and, with hand uplifted, levels down the obstacles raised the blow is dealt, when the slender dole is held out,- to oppose its progress.—Under its tutorage- the hand of or the sportive kitten--sobered by the neglect of the skill is exchanged for the groping efforts of blindfold unruly dwelling-with shaggy hair and dim eye-looking exertion — wisdom is followed by folly—and the fair out for a morsel, afforded with niggard hand.... Perhaps, pathway exchanged for the crooked road. above the scene of strifeis perched the canary, whose And amidst all this no room is found for the adwild notes ill harmonize with the scene below,or, in vancement of the Redeemer's cause. The drunkard corner dark and comfortless—the blackbird_ill fed and thinks not that he has a soul to be saved and he flees ill treated—the spoil of wood invaded- -or bush broken. not for refuge to the hope that the Gospel unfolds.

The walls-smoke bath defiled them,-or, in corner It is awful to think how many death-beds are pressed undisturbed-the spider has spread his tiny web,-the before deluded man is made aware of his dreadful con

windows_patched—and puttied with ceaseless indus- dition. But he is left to his own reflections no boon #try,_or, likelier still— with fractured glass or shattered companion draws near–no sound of friendly voice is

frame-giving admittance to every blast that blows, heard.—He is left to his own sad musings, and he sinks the door—a safe passage-to the wind—hinges broken into an unlamented grave, leaving behind him—the ne-patch-work complete and adding the discomforts of glected children for whom he ought to have provided imperfect protection to the scene of confusion within.... or the aged parents around whom he ought to have Look around—see the tools of the drunkard's art, thrown the hand of friendly protection.

[ocr errors]


Christians- can you refuse your help to lend, This blessed Gospel-message forth to send ? By England's debt of love to other lands, By all the blessings gather'd from their hands; By every gift which God so freely gave; By angels hovering over Martyn's grave; By every soul from sin and Satan won; Complete the work of love so well begun. By His command, who once for sinners died, By all the sorrows of the Crucified; We press you in this service to engage, With all the warmth of youth, and weight of age. Think on a Saviour's Love_let that constrain, Think on the high reward those souls shall gain; Who follow Christ, and in His service die, When they shall wear the crown of victory, And circled round by many a ransom'd band, In the Elect Assembly they shall stand, And wave the palm, and raise the chorus higi, “ Praise to the Lamb”-to all eternity,

Recently appointed a Missionary to the Zoolus in Eastern Africa,

from the Church Missionary Society in England.
Fair smiles the morn, and softly pants the breeze,
That fans the surface of the rippling seas;
With gentle whispers breathe the prosperous gales,
That fill the bosom of the swelling sails ;
While slow the anchor heaves, the nautic cry
Bursts high in air, and shakes the echoing sky;
Low bends the sailor o'er the dashing oar,
The whitening vessel leaves the lessening shore;
And wafts to distant lands with sails unfurl'd
The Gospel Herald to the Heathen world.

Speed, Christian Warrior, speed thy prosp'rous way,
Salvation's glorious mission to convey;
No wild Crusader arm’d for carnal strife,
But with the high behest of Death and Life!
The Spirit's heavenly sword 'tis thine to wield,
And clasp unflinching Faith's impervious shield.
While sons of commerce, bent on paltry gain,
Plough with adventurous keel the pathless main;
While bold discovery sends her scouts afar,
To scour the icebergs 'neath the polar star;
While British sailors, on long voyage, brave
The ruthless rigour of the stormy wave ;
Now pinch'd with cold, now scorch'd with sunshine,

ply Beneath a frigid or a torrid sky; While British soldiers on the sandy plain, Force their long marches, scorning to complain ; And seek in scenes of blood, and fields of fame, The bard-earn'd glory of a deathless name; 'Tis thine alone, bold Missionary, thine, To burn no incense at an earthly shrine; To seek no gain, no honour to pursuie, To keep no sordid, selfish end in view; But feeling what the call of Christ implied, And burning with the love of him who died; And by a IIoly Influence upborne, From home, and friends, and country thou art torn ; With scarce a lingering hope to see them more, But die unfriended on a foreign shore. Hark to the trumpet-blast l-it sounds afar, And calls the nations,not to deadly war, To strife and bloodshed,-'tis the Gospel's sound, It scatters peace and happiness around, On heathen shores, idolatry's domains, Where cruel superstition brooding reigns; The scriptural standard, gloriously unfurl'd, Proclaims Salvation to a ruin'd world. His path as beauteous as the dawn of day, The Gospel-Angel speeds his noiseless way; O'er bills of pagan gloom his footstep flies, To scatter darkness from a thousand eyes; See up the steep the unwearied herald bends, The light of love his joyous feet attends : Where'er they go, a dreary waste they find, And leave a smiling paradise behind.



Minister of Broughty Ferty. This island has been called the "Garden of England," on set the varied beauty of its scenery, and the healthful character at climate. It was in it that the Rev. Legh Richinond comx his ministry, and that those interesting circumstances ocurid which are recorded in his well-known tracts. And in the yards of Arreton and Brading, two of its parishes, lie the it « The Dairyman's Daughter,” and “ Jane, the Young Conta

Hail lovely islet of the sea !
Well “

England's Garden” styled,
So fertile and so fair; on thee

Hath thy Creator smiled.
I love thee, for thy green extent,

And scenes that ever change;
Each trait of British landscape blent

Within thy narrow range.
I love thee, for thy breezes bland,

Whereby are raised the low;
And the wan cheek of sickness fanned

Into health's rosy glow.
But chief I love thee, as the spot

Where Richmond taught and prayed;
Where those he storied had their los,

And 'neath the sod are laid.
Yes! to thy Arreton,—the plan

Of mercy shedding light, -
“ The daughter of the Dairyman"

He gave with solerin rite.
And in thy Brading did inter,

In death's eternal gain,
The mortal of that “ Cottager,"

The young, yet sainted “Jane."
These names are hallowed in my heart,

God grant their faith to me!
Oh! therefore loved by me thon art,

Fair islet of the sea.



« VorigeDoorgaan »