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i For they
just man should be merciful, and hast made thy children to be If a good hope that thou givest repentance for sins. For f thou didst punish the enemies of thy children, and the conlemned to death, with such deliberation, giving them time and lace, whereby they might be delivered from their malice : rith how great circumspection didst thou judge thine own ons, unto whose fathers thou hast sworn, and made covenants f good promises ? Therefore, whereas thou dost chasten us, hou scourgest our enemies a thousand times more, to the utent that, when we judge, we should carefully think of thy vodness, and when we ourselves are judged, we should look I mercy. Wherefore, whereas men have lived dissolutely ad unrighteously, thou hast tormented them with their own bominations.
24 Idolatry degrades the powers of fent astray very far in the
the soul, whilst it ruins its hopes. ays of error, and held them of gods, which even among the beasts of their enemies were espised, being deceived, as children of no understanding. Therefore unto them, as to children without the use of reason, hou didst send a judgment to mock them. But they that vould not be reformed by that correction, wherein he dallied with them, shall feel a judgment worthy of God.
27 So at the last, even the fierce For,
enemies of the cross, as they look ook, for what things they on him whom they pierced, shall rudged, when they were pu
with shame confess amid their suflished, that is, for them whom
ferings, that the vengeance of God hey thought to be gods ;
is just. now] being punished in them, when they saw it, they cknowledged him to be the true God, whom before they enied to know; and therefore came extreme damnation upon
St. Matthias's Bay.
MORNING. WISDOM OF SOLOMON xix. As for the ungodly, wrath By the ungodly here are meant the ame upon them without Egyptians. Upon them came "wrath hercy unto the end : for he
without mercy.” They were not in
covenant with God. God's wrath at new before what they would
times fell upon his own people, but b; how that having given
with mercy. For them he was enbem leave to depart, and
treated by Moses and Aaron in days ent them hastily away, they
of old ; as by Jesus the great and
only intercessor, now. ould repent and pursue 3 The Egyptians were mourning lem. For whilst they were their first-born : yet went they on
yet mourning and making still in their wickedness. They wou lamentation at the graves of take no warning. the dead, they added another foolish device, and pursued the as fugitives, whom they had intreated to be gone. For th destiny, whereof they are worthy, drew them unto this en and made them forget the things that had already happene that they might fulfil the punishment which was wanting their torments : and that 5 Israel passed through the sea 1 thy people might pass a won- a wonderful way—the waters heit derful way: but they might a wall unto them on their right has
and on their left. As for the Egyl
For find a strange death.
tians, they found a strange death the whole creature in his pro- whelmed in those very waters. per kind was fashioned again . So amazing were the miracle anew, serving the peculiar that all creation seemed new. commandments that were given unto them, that thy childre might be kept without hurt: as namely, a cloud shadowin the camp; and where water stood before, dry land appeared and out of the Red sea a way without impediment; and out the violent stream a green field : wherethrough all the peopl went that were defended with thy hand, seeing thy marvellou strange wonders. For they went at large like horses, an leaped like lambs, praising thee, O Lord, who hadst delivere them. 10 For they were yet 10 Allusion is here made to the mindful of the things that plagues of Egypt. were done while they sojourned in the strange land, how the ground brought forth flie instead of cattle, and how the river cast up a multitude o frogs instead of fishes. But afterwards they saw a new gene ration of fowls, when, being led with their appetite, they asker delicate meats. For quails came up unto them from the set for their contentment. " And 13 God fed his people with quais punishments came upon the but the Egyptians who had cruell sinners not without former entreated Israel, strangers and signs by the force of thun- journers among them—they went
punished as sinners. ders : for they suffered justly punished : according to their own wickedness, insomuch as they usel a more hard and hateful behaviour toward strangers. For th Sodomites did not receive those, whom they knew not whel they came : but these brought friends into bondage, that had well deserved of them. And not only so, but peradventur some respect shall be had of those, because they used stranger not friendly: but these very grievously afflicted 'them, whor they had received with feastings, and were already made par
takers of the same laws with
17 The history alluded to is in Gen. them. 17 Therefore even with xix. 1). The Egyptians suffered by blindness were these stricken, a miraculous thick darkness which as those were at the doors of might be felt, and which continued
for three days. the righteous man : when, being compassed about with horrible great darkness, every one sought the passage of his own
18 The elements are often used as doors. For the elements
an emblem of the harmony of sounds *. were changed in themselves by a kind of harmony, like as in a psaltery notes change the name of the tune, and yet are always sounds ; which may well he perceived by the sight of the things that have been done. For earthly things were turned into watery, and the things, that before swam in the water, now went upon the ground. The fire had power in the water, forgetting his own virtue : and the water forgat his own quenching nature. On the other side, the flames wasted not the flesh of the corruptible living things, though they walked therein ; neither melted they the icy kind of heavenly meat, that was of nature apt to melt. 2: For in all things, O Lord, 22 The same omnipotent hand is thou didst magnify thy peo- ever now ready“ to assist, in every ple, and glorify them, neither time and place,” you and me, and all didst thou lightly regard who trust in Him. 0! cleave unto them : but didst assist them such a God. in every time and place.
EVENING. ECCLESIASTICUS i. All wisdom cometh from
1 This is clear ; because, soul and the Lord, and is with him body, we are all the creatures of
Who can number God's hand. the sand of the sea, and the drops of rain, and the days of eternity? Who can find out the height of heaven, and the breadth of the earth, and the deep, and wisdom? Wisdom hath been created before all things, and the understanding of prudence from everlasting. The word of God most high is the fountain of wisdom; and her ways are everlasting commandments. To whom hath the root of wisdom been revealed ? or who hath known her wise counsels? (Unto whom hath the knowledge of wisdom been made manifest ? and who hath understood her great Fear Him, and love Him, and experience ?] There is one trust in Him: then, shalt thou never wise and greatly to be feared, be confounded. the Lord sitting upon his throne. He created her, and saw her, and numbered her, and poured her out upon all his works. She is with all flesh according to his gift, and he hath given her to them that love him. The fear of the Lord is honour, and glory, and gladness, and
* As a musician has power over sound, and out of discord brings harmony, so he who rules the elements--the music of the spheresruleth each sound as he wills, and from amid apparent discord and intritaey, pours forth at last the full tide of a clear and glorious harmony; till all creation own Him their maker and their God.
12 This is in the natural course of a crown of rejoicing. The things. The fear of the Lord keepfear of the Lord maketh a eth from evil, and casteth out all merry heart, and giveth joy, other fear. and gladness, and a long life. Whoso feareth the Lord, it shall go well with him at the last, and he shall find favour in the day of his death. To fear the Lord is the beginning of wisdom : and it was created with the faithful in the womb. She hath built an everlasting foundation with men, and she shall continue with their seed. To fear the Lord is the fulness of wisdom, and filleth men with her fruits. She filleth all their house with things desirable, and the garners with her increase. 18 The fear of the Lord is a crown of wisdom, gives a courage and a joy in life
18 A sense of an all-present God making peace and perfect which its troubles and sorrows canhealth to flourish; both which not take away ; and in death it supare the gifts of God: and it plies a hope, which no pains can enlargeth their rejoicing that weaken, and no fears destroy. love him. Wisdom raineth down skill and knowledge of understanding, and exalteth them to honour that hold her fast. The root of wisdom is to fear the Lord, and the branches thereof are long life. The
21 It would seem impossible for that fear of the Lord driveth away man to run into wilful sin, whose sins : and where it is present, heart is filled with the fear of God. it turneth away wrath. A furious man cannot be justified ; for the sway of his fury shall 23 A patient spirit, productive as it be his destruction. A
is of calmness and a peace which tient man will bear for a time, is its own reward, allay all fretfuland afterward joy shall spring
ness and anger. up unto him. He will hide his words for a time, and the lips of many shall declare his wis
25 It is painful to see how wicked dom. 25 The parables of men hate goodness in others. But knowledge are in the trea- be not thou discouraged—if they hate sures of wisdom : but godli- you, God will love you. ness is an abomination to a sinner. If thou desire wisdom, keep the commandments, and the Lord shall give her unto
and faith and meekness are 28 Distrust not religion, even if thou his delight.
28 Distrust not art poor. Be but sincere in prayer. the fear of the Lord when Attempt not the impossible work of thou art poor: and come not serving God and Mammon, unto him with a double heart. Be not an hypocrite in the sight of men, and take good 30 God exalteth the humble and heed what thou speakest. meek. Remember, that “ before *Exalt not thyself, lest thou honour is humility.” fall, and bring dishonour upon thy soul, and so God discover thy secrets, and cast thee down in the midst of the congregation, because thou camest not in truth to the fear of the Lord, but thy heart is full of deceit.
Che Annunciation of the Virgin Mary.
MORNING. ECCLESIASTICUS ii.
My son, if thou come to 1 Our spiritual enemy may well be serve the Lord, prepare thy supposed to urge his attacks more soul for temptation. Set thy violently, as he sees us more devoted heart aright, and constantly to God and holiness. endure, and make not haste in time of trouble. Cleave unto him, and depart not away, that thou mayest be increased at thy last end. •Whatsoever * Remember that nothing happens is brought upon thee take by chance. Shall we then receive cheerfully, and be patient good at the hand of the Lord, and when thou art changed to a
shall we not receive evil ?" low estate. For gold is tried in the fire, and acceptable men in the furnace of adversity. Believe in him, and he will help thee; order thy way aright, 7 That is-take no unlawful course, and trust in him. Ye that in the hope either of avoiding troufear the Lord, wait for his bles or seeking advantage. mercy; and go not aside, lest ye fall. Ye that fear the Lord, believe him ; and your reward shall not fail. 'Ye that Gloom is for the wicked and the
9 The Christian is ever hopeful. fear the Lord, hope for good, worldly. and for everlasting joy and 10 The history of God's Church and mercy. Look at the gene- people, collectively and individually, rations of old, and see ; did
is a triumphant answer. ever any trust in the Lord, and was confounded? or did any abide in his fear, and was forsaken? or whom did he ever despise, that called upon him? For the Lord is full of compassion and mercy, longsuffering, and very pitiful, and for