Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

no sooner did true religion revive in this country, and the gospel was earnestly preached in our own parishes at home, than God stirred up the minds of some good and zealous men, to go abroad into far distant countries, and let the heathen share the blessing. They made missionary societies (as they are called), and began to collect funds to help the preachers to go where they were called by God. Several were sent out into many different countries, and although they had a great deal to struggle with, they were the means of turning some from darkness to light, and converting them from the error of their way. These societies have gone on now for many years, and every year have sent some more clergymen into distant parts of the world. God has given a blessing upon many of their labours, and has stirred up the minds of the rich and wealthy, to give of their abundance in aid of the good cause. Perhaps it will surprise you to hear that 50,0001. were collected last year by one of these societies alone, to send missionaries to Africa and the East !

T. I can hardly believe that such a sum could be subscribed. What a number this money would send out!

F. Not nearly so many as are wanted. Three times that amount would not be enough. The heathens are crying out for more teachers, and send over such anxious letters, that one's heart almost burns to hear them read. As soon as the poor things knew the value of the Gospel, they prayed to hear more of it, and longed to have a hundred preachers for every one that was sent out to them. They say, that it is impossible to supply at present as many as are required. The funds are not sufficient, and ought to increase very much every year, or else the missions will not meet the wants of a quarter of the people who desire them.

T. Why, then, don't all persons at home unite to give a great deal more? They can surely afford it, for many have got more than they can use properly, and lots. of money are spent in foolish luxuries.

F. Ah, Thomas, how many there are who don't think of their own souls, and how unlikely it is that they will care much for the salvation of others! Let us rather ask ourselves what can we do? And have we done as much as

we can? This is better than seeing the faults of others, or complaining of their neglect.

T. But, father, do you really think that it is expected of us to give anything, when we work for our own bread, and have got little or nothing to spare?

F. And why not of us? Because we work for our own bread? Can that be any reason for giving nothing to others, who want more than ourselves? Can you see a poor beggar starving at your door, and not give him a crust? I am sure you could not. And why are the heathens to have no claims upon us too? Does not St. Paul tell us to “work with our hands the thing which is good, that we may have to give to him that needeth.So that poor people must give as well as rich ones. You know about the widow's mite, and how Christ valued it more than the gifts of all the rich men who cast into the treasury. Indeed, I think it is sweeter to give what we work for, than if we got it for nothing. "It is more blessed to give than to receive;" and most blessed of all to give what we have earned by hard work; because it costs us the more. And as for having " little or nothing to spare,” that is

very often as we may manage our affairs. Some have a great deal, and yet nothing to spare, because they waste it all away.

Others have little, and yet can " give of that little,” because they use it prudently, and “do their diligence” to have something over. However, money is not all that we can give to the cause of missions. Every Christian ought to feel deeply about it, and then he will pray God on behalf of it. This will help the good work as much, or perhaps more, than anything. But I don't think that any one's prayers are very sincere unless they are accompanied with some contributions too. We want actions, as well as words, to prove sincerity. I have heard of several Christians who have given up some little indulgence to save a few shillings for this good purpose ; and many poor people” have even contributed pounds in the course of their lives, by little and little. Cannot we do something of this kind;-let us see; and may God give us grace to find a way. This I think will soon be the case, if we have a will.

E.

FAMILY RELIGION. “ Hear ye the word of the Lord, 0 house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel."-Jer, jj. 4. If you are the father or mother, the master or mistress of a family, consider that it is not enough to read the Bible to yourself, or to pray by yourself. “All the families " are commanded to “ hear the word of the Lord," and the disregard of this injunction will lie as a heavy guilt upon the heads of such families. This subject is not mentioned only once in the Scriptures; there are other passages to the same effect, and examples laid before us, that we e may

be excited to "go, and do likewise.” This is the command which we receive by the mouth of Moses, “ and ye shall lay up these my words in your heart, and in your mind; and ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in the house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Joshua did not merely say, “As for me, I will serve the Lord ;” but “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” As the master of his own family, he was answerable for their joining in the worship of God. As the head over the whole family of Israel, he was bound to provide that they all should hear the word of the Lord ? And accordingly we find that “ he read all the words of the law, the blessings and cursings, according to all that is written in the book of the law."

- There was not a word of all that Moses commanded which Joshua read not before all the congregation of Israel, with the women, and the little ones and the strangers that were conversant among them.” Again—it was the praise of the father of the faithful, spoken by God Himself: “I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him."

He received his reward in the pious and devoted faithfulness of his servant Eliezer, and in the holy and tranquil life of his beloved Isaac. Timothy, while a child, had been taught the holy Scriptures by his grandmother Lois, and his mother Eunice; and how were they rewarded for their Thy

pious cares! St. Paul says, he was thereby "made wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” David calls upon

young men and maidens, old men and children,” to join together and praise the name of the Lord. In so doing, we may trust that our sons will be as plants grown up in their youth, and our daughters as the polished corners of the temple." As to caring for the souls of our children, we have indeed many very express commands—and is it possible to obey them, is it possible to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord,” if we do not feed these babes with the “ sincere milk of the word ?” “ Train up a child in the way he should go" is the command ; and if we ask how we are to set about it, David will tell us what he found the best, the only means of being "undefiled in the way." word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee."

Through thy precepts I get understanding, therefore I hate every false way.” « Order my steps in thy word, so shall no iniquity have dominion over me.

This then is the training by which a child must be led into the right way. We have the promise that “when he is old, he will not depart from it;" but that his hoary hairs shall be a crown of glory, being found in the way of righteousness. If we ask with the Psalmist, “wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way?" We always receive the same answer. Even," by taking heed thereto according to thy word.” If then we would not have to answer for the souls of our children, and of our servants, as well as for our own at the day when we shall be judged out of the things written in the book of God - let us steadily resolve no longer to neglect reading that word to them by which we and they shall be judged; and let us pray with them for his grace, that we may thereby be "nourished with all goodness, and kept in the same, “through faith unto salvation." Then we shall have fulfilled our part towards obeying the exhortation of Jeremiah, “Hear ye the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel."

C. W. P.

THE DEATH OF THE RIGHTEOUS.
My belov'd, thou art gone to thy rest,

In a mild and a tranquil hour,
Like the babe from its own mother's breast,

Gently laid in its cradle bower.
When its mother hath soothingly hush'd

The young infant's complaining cry,
And when sleep on its fair cheek hath blush'd,

With a tender and hectic dye.
For thy Saviour hath peacefully charmed

All thy doubts, unbelief, and fears,
And thy spirit when dying, was calmed

Into joy's bright and trembling tears.
And the trials and sorrows and griefs,

Of thy wearisome earthly days,
Are now turned into brightest relief

Of incessant and blissful praise.
Thou art gone to thy holiest rest,

In a quiet and tranquil hour,
And thy spirit for ever is blest,

With the glory of Love's own power.

C. W. P.

THE GAS MICROSCOPE.

" FANNY, will you like to come with me, and see the exhibition of the Gas Microscope ?"

Fanny. “Oh, yes, my dear mother, I shall like very much to go; for I was reading an account of it this morning, and it seems very wonderful.”

M. I have seen the solar microscope, where the light of the sun is used to increase the power of the glasses; but they say the gas increases the power still more, as it is possible to bring the light nearer, so that it is more powerful.

Fanny and her mother went to the exhibition. It was in winter, and the ground was covered with snow. The room into which they were shown, was made as dark as possible ; and the contrast, after the glare of the snow, was painful to the eyes; but they kept them closed for some minutes, and were then surprised to find how distinctly they could see the things around them. While waiting for the showman, Fanny was much amused in watching the people who came in. Some made loud complaints of the want of light, forgetting that the dark

« EdellinenJatka »