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creature of all flesh that is upon the earth. And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I bave established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth. And the sons of Noah, that went forth of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth and Ham is the father of Canaan. 19 These are the three sons of Noah and of them was the whole earth overspread.
19 Europe was peopled by the descendants of Japhet,-Asia by those of Shem,-Africa those of Ham.
EVENING. GENESIS xii.
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: and I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
What sincerity of faith! what strength of purpose! The promise seemed vain; yet he believed. To hear was to obey *.
3 and I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran. And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran; and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came. And Abram passed through the land unto the place of Sichem, unto the plain of Moreh. And the Canaanite was then in the land. And the LORD appeared unto Abram, and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he an altar unto the LORD, who appeared unto
Abraham's faith led him to undertake a journey of 400 miles towards the land appointed for him.
him. And he removed from thence unto a mountain on
8 This was Mount Ephraim. Beth-el means the house of God.
the east of Beth-el, and pitched his tent, having Beth-el on the west, and Hai on the east: and there he builded an altar unto the LORD, and called upon the name of the LORD.
* This history is full of instruction and comfort,-strengthening every holy resolve, and encouraging every righteous act, by evidencing the gracious goodness of the Lord to his faithful servants. In Abraham, according to promise, all the families of the earth have been blessedeven all nations, through Christ Jesus. O may I never cast away my individual share of this blessing; peace here, everlasting happiness hereafter !
Abram journeyed, going on still toward the south. 10 And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; the land. And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee. And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair. The princes also of Pharach saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh and the woman was taken into Pharaoh's house. And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels. And the LORD plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram's wife. And Pharaoh called Abram, and said, What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife?" why saidst thou, She is my sister? so I might have taken her to me to wife: now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way. And Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him and they sent him away, and his wife, and all that he had.
10 Let no difficulties deter you from your appointed course of duty. That is the path towards your Canaan ! Here we are all but sojourners. for the famine was grievous in
11 Who can boast himself without fault? Abraham's error is recorded, as Peter's was, with a twofold object. It warns good men against presumption; and it instructs us all that there is no sure confidence but in the power and wisdom of our God.
19 Truth is not only always our highest duty, but our truest policy. Where truth is, there is courage; where truth is not, there is fear. No good end can justify bad means.
The first Sunday in Lent.
MORNING. GENESIS xix. to ver. 30.
1AND there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot
sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up
Angels are still
we see them not. O God! permit them to minister to me for my guidance and consolation.
to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the
2 The kindly heart is ever ready to show hospitality.
and wash your feet, and ye your ways. And they said,
ground; and he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant's house, and tarry all night, shall rise up early, and go on Nay; but we will abide in 3" Unleavened bread" was soon the street all night. And prepared. So a little kindness, when he pressed upon them greatly; promptly offered, well supplieth the and they turned in unto him, further extent of a delayed benefit. and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat. But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: and they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them. And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, and said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof. And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door. But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door. "And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door. And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the city, bring them out of this place: for we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of the LORD; and the LORD hath sent us to destroy it. 14 And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons in law, which married his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place; for the
11 Thus God is ever present to deliver his servants; often by the most
unexpected means. Every Christian's experience can testify to this. and God will at last deliver him. Let a man preserve his integrity,
14 When the preacher, as my spiritual father, warns me from evil by divine threats, or encourages to virlook upon him "as one that mocktue by divine promises, never let me eth." He speaketh the oracles of God.
LORD will destroy this city. But he seemed as one that mocked unto his sons in law. And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city. And while he lingered, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD being merciful unto him and they brought him forth, and set him without the city. And it came to 17 The wise servant of God fleeth pass, when they had brought sin and sinners, as eagerly as one them forth abroad, that he who "escapeth for his life." eternal life is at stake. said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed. And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so, my Lord: behold now, thy servant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, which thou hast shewed unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest some evil take me, and I die: behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one: Oh, let me escape thither, (is it not a little one?) and my soul shall live. And he said unto him, See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow this city, for the which thou hast spoken. 22 Haste thee, escape thither; for I
22 Thus the Church is the appointed Zoar for the "afflicted and distressed, in mind, body, or estate.”
cannot do any thing till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar. Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; 25 and he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. "But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. And Abraham gat up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the LORD: and he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace. And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt.
25 The same eye still beholdeth both iniquity and righteousness. The same power is still at hand to punish the
one and bless the other.
26 A half-obedience is fatal. Alas! for them who turn back to evil! Remember Lot's wife.
EVENING. GENESIS Xxii.
1 AND it came to pass after these things that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. And he said, Take now thy son,
1 God did tempt Abraham; not by enticing him, but by making trial of his faith, and proof of his obedience. 2 Isaac was Abraham's only son by Sarah-a type of Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, whom the Father designated as his "beloved Son."
thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which
3 What a ready obedience! O may I never delay any work of duty!
I will tell thee of. And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass, and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you. 6 And Abraham took the 6 How affecting a scene! So the wood of the burnt offering, Son of God bore the cross, on which and laid it upon Isaac his he was to suffer as our sacrifice. son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together. And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abra
10 Was ever faith so strong * ?
ham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham : and he said, Here am I. And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him:
12 Obedience is the rational as well as the required test of our love and fear of God. God knoweth our in
* Abraham was persuaded that if his hopes, that "in Isaac should his seed be called," were thus cut off, God could and would find some mode of reconciling the severity of the present command with the blessing of the former promise, in that the dead might rise again. (Heb. xi. 19.)