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of the widow is spoken of by James as lest to them the Saviour should have the mark of pure religion. “Pure to say, “I was sick, and ye visited me religion and undefiled before God and
If ministers have apostolic the Father is this, to visit the father- example, private Christians have aposless and widow in their affliction" tolic command to guide them in this (James i. 27). This surely cannot be work. Paul wrote to the Thessaloapplied exclusively to the minister, nians (v. 11)-“Comfort yourselves unless he be the only person who pos- together and edify one another, as also sesses pure religion. The Saviour has
Two objects of Christian drawn a picture of the general judg. visitation are here set forth-comfort ment, and on that occasion He repre- and edification. Whatever will not sents Himself as saying to those on conduce to one or the other of these His right hand, “I was sick, and ye ends should be carefully avoided. visited me; I was in prison, and ye These visits should not degenerate came unto me” (Matt. xxv. 36). He into meetings for gossip. A tattling explains those phrases by saying, visitor is a source of discord, and a “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto hinderer of true prosperity. By magone of the least of these my brethren, nifying the defects of the church, by ye have done it unto me." To those speaking disrespectfully of the pastor, on His left hand He says, "I was sick by retailing the unguarded expressions and in prison, and ye visited me not." of inembers, more evil can be done in Remembering that this service is one hour by one member than can be claimed by Christ from all His ser- undone by the church in many weeks. vants, and that it is regarded by Christ While, then, we would urge Christians as done to Himself, and that special generally to visit their friends, we would prominence will be given to it at the caution then against the evils comday of judgment, can any Christian mitted by those of whom Paul speaks, refuse to join in this benevolent work? who “ learn to be idle, wandering about Rather let there be a spirit of holy from house to house: and not only emulation manifested by all in this idlers, but tattlers also, and busybodies, service. Instead of complaining that speaking things which they ought not" the work is not done by others, let (1 Tim. v. 13).
C. PAYNE. them heartily engage in it themselves,
DOWN AMONG THE WATER WEEDS.
FOR OUR JUVENILE READERS,
THERE was once upon a time a busy little creature, who, being anxious to get settled in life, decided upon building herself a house, for her mother was dead, her brothers and sisters gone out into the world, and she was left quite alone. Perhaps you would wish to know what she was like; so I must tell you that she had eight little legs, eight little eyes, and a pretty darkbrown body, covered with silky hair. Now, strange to say, two elements were necessary for this tiny being's existence; for though all her family pass their lives deep down in the water, they could never exist there without atmospheric air, and she, being early left to her own devices, felt sorely puzzled as to how she must contrive her habitation. She was not very long in doubt, for the kind fairy
“ Instinct" soon came to her assistance, and then to show her how to secure a bubble of air under her body, dive with it to the bottom of the water, and there weave herself a strong little tent within which she carefully enclosed the air. When all was finished, it looked very pretty indeed, just like a ball of quicksilver floating about. But Mrs. Spider (diving water spider) did not want it to float; she wished it to be kept quite stationary. So she spun a number of lines, and, throwing them out in all directions, she fastened thern to the water-plants, and so firmly secured her little tent.
When Instinct saw it, she said, "That will do nicely; for the threads will not only keep your dwelling quite steady, but they will also catch the legs of flies and other creatures which,
you know, you will want for your I should like to make acquaintance food.”
with my neighbours, particularly any “Oh, that is delightful!" said Mrs. 80 handsome as you are.
What is Spider (and her eight little eyes gliss your name, dear? Don't be afraid of tened with pleasure). “I was just me; my only fault is, that I am too beginning to think of my kitchen; for, gentle, and my nature is so tender to say the truth, a fine house with an I could not even hurt a fly." empty larder is not at all my notion of “Ha! ha! ha!” laughed he of the enjoying life.”
bronze coat (while he rudely put his So she sat in her tent and watched fore claw on the top of his nose); “my her pets, and presently a fat little coat may be green, ma'am, but my creature was caught in one of them. nature is not; and though I cannot see “ You stupid thing,” said she; “don't you, I know your cunning voice very kick so, or you'll pull my house down; well. Was it not a cousin of yours stay quiet until I release you.” So, that sang the pretty song to a foolish running out, she soon did release him, little fly, coaxed her into his parlour, not only from the net but from his and then ate her up? True I am life; and having dined heartily at his better protected than any of the Neuexpense, she returned to her house, roptera (nerve-winged) family; still, carefully closed the door, and began to ma'am, you must excuse me if, wbile I make arrangements for the accomoda- talk to you, I prefer keeping ont of tion of her young family.
your way. I see the dead body of one “Dear me," said she, “it is really of our young grubs near your nets. very pleasant down here; the green Poor thing! he was very helpless, and leaves of that anácharis look so beau- you were not long in making an end of tiful, now the sun shines through him. Yes, Dame Spider, I know you them, while the spreading branches too well; you are a very clever little not only afford me delightful shade, lady, but your appetite is really 80 but also help to support my tent. good, and your conscience so bad, I Everything looks very quiet here just prefer keeping out of reach of your now; but I fancy it is not always so, poisonous fangs.” for Instinct told me that even as I “Dear me," said Mrs. Spider, in a prey upon other creatures, so other tone of injured innocence; "I perceive creatures will prey upon me. But I'll you are one of those people who detake care of that; I'll keep in my light in telling disagreeable truths. I house, and watch over my young ones, must live, you know; and you should and peep out at my gauzy window to not be so very severe in your remarks. see all that is going on."
However, rude as you are, you can be One day when Mrs. Spider was look- useful to a stranger like me; only first ing out of her window, she saw a num- please tell me your name. ber of little fellows in dark green uni- Name !" said bronze coat, “what's form darting about in all directions; in a name ?' But if you want to know and, being a cousin to that Mr. Spider mine, it is Gyrius Nalator (a very who so cruelly deceived a tender small species of water beetle), and young fly, I am sorry to say she had I belong to the great Coleoptera (sheathmuch of his wily disposition ; so (while winged), or beetle family." wondering in her mind whether the "To the beetle family! Oh then, new comers were good to eat) she keep away by all means. I don't called out, in her sweetest tones, to know what you may be, but I know beg that they would come into her some of your relatives are cruel creaparlour and pay her a visit. Hearing tures; so it is safer for an unprotected a strange voice, most of them ran being like me to ask you to keep your away, but one, braver than the rest, distance, and not desire any closer stood still, He was a very pretty
acquaintance." little fellow, and Mrs. S. was quite Oh," said little bronze coat, “so taken with his appearance.
you are afraid of me! I am not so “Come here, my dear," said she; cruel as some of my kindred; besides, “I want to look at your beautiful you are safe in your house, and not in bronze coat, and to have a little talk
my way. And now that I know that with you; for, being a stranger here, you daren't hurt me, I don't mind
stopping to introduce you to some of was quite amused to think that I our neighbours.” “Thank you," said should fancy that she could build her Mrs. Spider. “But first, just tell me lowest chamber first. ‘No, indeed,' what you have got on your back. It said she; I was not so foolish. I seems quite hard, and shines so when began life in a house suited to my age you turn round."
and capabilities; and then, as 1 grew “Oh, that is my shield. All of the older and greater, I added whirl after Coleoptera family, to which I belong, whirl; so my lowest and widest chamare military characters. We have ber, at which I go in and out, has, shields on our backs, and armour on of course, been built the latest.'' the under part of our bodies ; and see,
“Well, I wonder,” said Mrs. Spider, I can open my shield in the centre, " that she did not make it thicker and spread it out into wings, and as I have stronger. It is roomy enough, but so delicate gauze wings too, when the
thin that it is almost transparent; and cool night comes, I can fly off and that sharp edge at the aperture must visit some other water. It's a jolly often get broken." arrangement, isn't it, particularly for “So it does; but, as I told you an active little fellow like me?"
before, she can easily build it up “Very," said the spider, sighing again; and being light and buoyant, “I wish I had wings. However, my it is better for floating about in the eight little legs can take me about still water. Oh, she is a very clever fast enough-a good deal faster than creature, I assure you. But, while I this creature's, so slowly crawling up
admire her talent, I cannot always apthe apácharis. Ah! now I see that prove of her conduct; she is so exceedpoor thing has no legs at all. Is it ingly greedy, and very depraved in any one you know ?”
her tastes, eating all sorts of nasty “Oh, yes: I know her very well, things. Decayed leaves her not that we are in any way connected,
general food; but whenever a dead for she belongs to a different order of fish or any decomposed aniinal matter creation from you and me.
comes within her reach, you cannot insects, you know; but she is a fish- think how ravenously she will deone of the great family of Testaceous vour it." Mollusca, or shell fish. They are very 6. Well, Master Beetle, I don't think quiet, inoffensive creatures, but, for one of your family need talk about bad my taste, too fond of staying at home; taste in eating, for I have been told indeed, they are so firmly attached to
you're not very particular. However their habitations, that wherever they it is well that the Limneids (freshgo, each one carries about his house
water snails) as well as you have those on his back. That one you are look- habits, for you all act as scavengers ing at is Limnea Stagnalis. See! she down here, and clear away substances is putting out her head, so you can that would otherwise be very offensive see her great triangular horns.”
to a delicate creature like me. But pid she looks !"
you said Limnea Stagnalis devoured “Nothing of the kind," Madam her food very quickly; and I want to Spider. « She is as clever as you are,
know how she can do so without any for she built that horn-coloured man
teeth.” sion herself; and whenever it gets
“ Without teeth! I can tell you broken, she can mend it very nicely. she has plenty of teeth; for not only See how prettily shaped it is! It has is the upper part of her mouth armed several chambers, the lowest being the with a strong mandible (horny jaw), largest, next one less in size, and so but she has (look now, she is putting on until they taper to a very small it out!) a long tongue, upon which point.” “Yes," said Mrs. Spider, “it 110 teeth are arranged in rows, the is very curious, whirling round and inner row being the largest and round. But I cannot think how she strongest.” “ Well, I must say 110 stretched out to build the little room is not a bad stock of teeth. However, on the top." “Ha! ha!" laughed I can't think how she can see where little beetle; "that is just what I to find her food without any eyes." said. And when she heard me, she “I wonder what is the use of your
eight eyes," asked Limnea Stagnalis, mine, you cannot imagine what I “if you can't see mine. Look on each side of my head at the inner base of “Of course not," answered Mrs. my tentacles (horns), and you see a Spider. “If you speak in your fishy very fine pair of eyes. I suppose you language, you cannot expect us insects expected me to be like my cousins the to understand you." land-snails, who carry theirs on the Hard to say how hot the debate point of their long horns. But now I might have become (for a tongue perceive you are a pair of gossips ; so armed with 110 teeth must be able to I am not going to waste my precious say very biting things); but the distime talking
cussion was closed very suddenly, for “ You have got nothing else to do," a sound like quack! quack! was beard sneered Mrs. Spider.
-a feathered head was put into the “ Haven't I? I can tell you you are water-a great trap opened widemistaken. Every thing and every and a huge feathered monster called a creature in nature has a duty to per- duck swallowed up Limnea Stagnalis ! form during its lifetime; and at present Of course this created great confusion mine is to choose out a favourable among the inhabitants of the waterspot and there deposit my spawn. weeds; but the feathered creature "Spawn !" said Mrs. Spider, “what is soon went away, and quietness was that ?" "Ignorant creature," said restored.–From “Down Among the Limnea Stagnalis. "You lay eggs
Water Weeds; or, Marvels of Pond yourself, and yet when I allude to Life." By Mona B. Bickerstaffe.
THE LATE DR. JAMES HAMILTON. RESPECT for this excellent man and myself. With this preface I may be distinguished preacher, together with allowed to give utterance most inadepleasant memories of his earliest quately to some impressions and remiministrations in the metropolis, where niscences clustering in my mind around he was so near to us as to be con- James Hamilton, and my intercourse sidered our neighbour, induce us to with him. Such was the transparency give a few extracts from some of the of his nature, such the perfect and sermons preached on the occasion of guileless simplicity of his character, his death.
that no one could ever meet with him The Rev. Dr. Candlish, of Edinburgh, without knowing him, and uone could delivered the funeral sermon in Regent's know him without loving hiin. He Square Chapel, and at its conclusion felt thus in his dying hour, and a brief he said, I come among you on this sad notice of what he said shortly before occasion simply to preach Jesus Christ, his death will show us how he felt it. because that is the course which he Says his brother, "He was surprised whose presence haunts us to-day would to see me step into his room, but he prefer. I have a message to deliver welcomed me in his own peculiar manto you from him. It is this, “Love to
William, ," said he, “I am the session and congregation," to some glad to see you, and how kind it is of by name, and many more.
you to come so far.” “I have just inquire the ground of my confidence, come to tell you how near you are to it is not that I have been a minister of happiness and to home." "I somethe gospel, or have been kept from some times think so," he replied, “and fear sins, for I feel utterly unworthy. My I
may be disappointed.” I said, “No, hope is in the mercy of God, through you cannot be disappointed; you will Jesus Christ, and in that blood which will be there in a few days or in a few cleanseth from all sin. And I wish to hours." “Oh, William,” he said, go into God's presence as the rest have you have brought me good news. donea sinner saved by grace-a How kind of you to tell me this. You sinner saved by grace." That is his are a happy man; you are strong and latest message to you. Lay it solemnly well, and you have the wondrous to heart, as I desire to lay it to heart privilege of preaching the glorious
66 If any
gospel of Jesus Christ.” He then I am here to-day because I offered asked after his brother's wife and myself for this duty, knowing that it children, and on being told they had would be very trying, very painful ; sent their love to him, he said, “Oh, I but I was not able to resist the impulse am hemmed in by love on every side. moving me to pay this tribute to the There is nothing but love around me; memory of my brother in the Lord. but I have too little love within me. I knew him, if not from his boyhood, It was the very fulness of his love at least from his ripening youth. I which made him feel short of it. He watched his college career, in so far as loved so much that he never could be it was under my eye, with sanguine satisfied he loved enough, There was expectation of his fame. At the close no weakness in his love.
It was a of it I chose him to be my fellowstrong manly affection; a love of the labourer in my parochial work. His truth of God as it is in Jesus. Never first sermon was preached in my parowas there a compromise of principle chial mission house, and the beginning on his side, never any indulgence of of his ministry was with ine. I had a sin or error. Strongly as he was chief hand in sending him to London attached to the creed and polity of our -in introducing him to your notice, Free Kirk and the Presbyterian com- and persuading him to accept your munity, I believe that he belonged call. Our relations since have been of emphatically to the brotherhood of the closest kind. We have exchanged saints. All true men of all denomina- pulpits for successive Sabbaths, when tions might have concurred with him. the exciting work of the crises of the You have witnessed the anxiety of ten years' conflict compelled my promany and various pastors and con- longed residence here; and down to gregations during his illness, and you the close of his ministry, our pastoral have seen how many of all varieties of fellowship, like our personal frieodship, religious sentiments and views filled continued unabated. this house and crowded round his open The Hon. and Rev. Baptist Noel, in grare. His loss falls heavily on you the course of his sermon, remarked :-you who have been wont to enjoy Many will lament for himn; and they the eloquence of his charmed lips, and may well lament, for the world has lost to welcome him to your homes, where a friend, London has lost a light, his presence made sunshine amongst though he occupied the humble posiyou. But all Christendom laments it. tion of a pastor of a dissenting church. You have the whole family of God's It was not because of the rank of His people with you. All miss him, and all disciples that Jesus said, “Ye are the feel that at such a time as this such a lights of the world;" and so it was
can ill be spared, for he was with our dear brother, to whom God indeed, to use our poet's words, “a gave great virtues, and they made rare man. Gifted originally with an him a light. He had a very consider. extraordinary combination of mind and able capacity; he had a powerful fancy heart, he had qualities any one of and a very refined taste; he had a which must have made anotber man great love of literature; he was a man distinguished. Of an even tempera- of extensive reading and knowledge, ment, ready wit, a keen sense of and all these were sanctified because humour, a keen appreciation of beauty, spent in the service of his Master; a correct and capacious mernory, he and what perhaps was better than all had an an order of arrangement and a this, he had much of that lowliness of power of speech not often found in any spirit amidst the lustre of great facul
He threw much of bright ties which gave Jesus so much exaltapictorial imagination about what he tion. And there always seemed to me said, and could draw illustrations from to be in Dr. Hamilton a peculiar childall the ranks of nature, and well-nigh like clearness and child-like innocency, all the arts and science of life. Need such as you rarely see in a man; and I speak of his manly disposition, or of his all that makes this a great loss, and it warm-heartedness, his generosity, his is a grief to me to think I shall never wide sympathy, or of the elevated see him more in this world. tone of happy charity which won the The Rev. C. H. Spurgeon, at the admiration and esteem of ever one ? Tabernacle, said, Dr. James Hamilton