Imágenes de páginas

Not in the stately oak the fragrance dwelleth

Which charms the general wood;
But in the violet low, whose sweetness telleth

Its unseen neighbourhood.

The angels bend their eyes upon her goings,

And guard her from annoy ;
Heaven fils her quiet heart with overflowings

of calm celestial joy.

The censer swung by the proud hand of merit

The Saviour loves her, for she wears the vesture Pumes with a fire abhorred;

With which He walked on earth; But Faith's two mites, dropped covertly, inherit

And through her childlike glance, and step, and a blessing from the Lord.

gesture, Round lowliness a gentle radiance hovers

He knows her heavenly birth.
A sweet unconscious grace ;
Which, even in shrinking, evermore discovers

He now beholds this seal of glory graven
The brightness on its face.

On all whom He redeems ;

And in His own bright city, crystal.paren,
Where God abides, Contentment is and Honour,

On every brow it gleams.
Such guerdon Meekness knows :
His peace within her, and His smile upon her,
Her saintly way she goes.

The white-robed saints, the throne-steps singing

under, Through the straight gate of life she passes, Their state all meekly wear ; stooping,

Their pauseless praise wells up from hearts With sandals on her feet;

which wonder And pure-eyed Graces, with linked palms come! That ever they came there.

trooping Their sister fair to greet.


Notices of Books.

Thoughts on Sabbath Schools. By Hugh lievers. From this piety, indeed, springs

BARCLAY. Pp. 121. Edinburgh: Paton what we cannot help feeling as the chief and Ritchie.

fault of the book, and one which may

have a bad effect on inany readers,—we This little book is a reprint from the mean, the very strict requirements from pages of this Magazine, with considerable a Sabbath school teacher. Unintentionadditions. It is one of the most useful ally, no doubt, but not the less surely, the of the many excellent pamphlets by standard for every candidate seems to Sheriff Barclay of Perth. Unpretending be, the assurance of an interest in Christ. and homely in its appearance and its The words used seem to us to be too style, its contains the well-digested ex- strong, even if meant for ministers of perience of thirty years of Sabbath the Gospel ; and we are not sure whether school teaching gathered by an observing the effect of them may not be to dismind. There is nothing in the book courage many from coming forward to which more impresses the reader than offer their services, and, perhaps, cause the evident adaptation of the writer's mind some already working to cease from their and manner to children. There is hardly labours. Making all allowances for the a page which a child might not under- state of schools where teachers are not stand. More than most men, he has a much needed, (which the author seems power of making thoughts, by no means to have chiefly in view,) and desiring, as simple, plain to the most unlearned; and earnestly as any one can do, personal the hundreds of happy similes through- piety, personal love to the Saviour, in out the volume give a peculiar piquancy all who teach the young, we yet cannot to what is said. There is much valuable accede to the strong terms used by Mr. matter, which cannot be too well remem- | Barclay in more than one page of the bered, in the chapter on the objects of volume before us. We would suggest, Sabbath school teaching, one of the most also, the need of supplying, in future practical, and, as we can testify from editions, (should they be called for,) one experience, one of the most needed por- omission in this otherwise pretty comtions of the book. A tone of piely plete manual. A chapter on infant classes pervades this volume, such as is rare, would be very useful. There are, perindeed, in a work from the pen of a man haps, no classes in a Sabbath school more of business, and which gives & practical difficult to conduct efficiently, pone more example of the truth (oftener met with needing a patient and loving spirit, and in theory) of the priesthood of all be. none which a book on Sabbath schools is more called upon to notice. We have This is a very carefully compiled anafound the Peep of Day, the Line upon lysis of an Act which concerns every inLine, and the Mother's Catechism, to be habitant of this country; and it is simply the best books for this purpose ; and by because it does concern every body, that means of them we have found children we would wish to turn 'attention to it. who could not read as much pleased and Acts of Parliament are, almost proinstructed in the Sabbath school as those verbially, difficult of interpretation; and of greater age.

the object of this Analysis is to lessen There is no part of this volume better these difficulties; and, by the avoidance or more important than the chapter on of legal or technical terms, to enable the the visitation of scholars at their own great unprofessional mass of the comhomes by their teachers. To visit those munity to understand (as far as registrawho have been absent even one night, tion is concerned) “ what they have to during the following week, is the only do, and how they are to do it." safeguard for the regular attendance of: We would especially recommend the the children. But, besides this, the im- Analysis to those who are generally the portance of a monthly visitation of every counsel of the poor- the country clergyscholur by his or her teacher, cannot be men of Scotland-for, as was well retoo highly estimated. It is most needful marked by the noble author of the meato become acquainted with the condition sure, it was emphatically a poor man's of the scholars' homes, to bring an in- bill. The rich and the great had their fluence to bear upon them, to secure deeds and their instruments, through which parental aid for the Sabbath school, and a pedigree might be traced, and a knotty to know what special admonitions or pointin somecase of succession solved; but encouragements to address to each one. a poor man, in endeavouring to establish The teacher or the pastor who speaks to bis right to succeed to property, frequentstrangers, is like a man drawing a bow ly failed, from the facts of imperfect regisat a venture, or like a physician pre-' tration, and of his having no such deeds scribing for a patient without inquiring to refer to. This measure, then, is the about his disease. These remarks ås to poor man's charter; and we are sure visitation apply, however, almost entirely that Mr. Seton's Analysis of it will be 'to children of the poorer classes. Much regarded as a boon by every one indeed, that is interesting on this subject will be to some degree, but especially, by every found in Sheriff Barclay's chapter on one like our country clergymen, whose 'this duty. We observe that nothing is advice is frequently regarded as a rule said about the rehearsal of the Sabbath for action. school lessons by the superintendent or But we anticipate not only an indivi. the male teachers, a practice becoming dual, but a collective benefit from the common, and, where practicable, at- Act. It will be the means of affording tended with good results; also, the in- most valuable statistical facts, and may, troductory chapter upon the history and by its warning voice, add many material importance of Sabbath schools, has some comforts to, and take away many destruchow lost its way, and stumbled into the tive elements from the homes and houses conclusion of the volume,-being too late of our land. for the train, we suppose it was put into It should be thoroughly understood by the last carriage by mistake. We press every one, that while perfectly gratuiupon all our readers who are personally tous, the registration of births, marriages, engaged in the work of Sabbath school and deaths, is now compulsory in Scotteaching, the perusal of this manual in land,* and it is well to bear in mind that its enlarged and amended form. It can- | the provisions of the Act are enforced by pot fail to be highly useful; and we trust penalties—from a fine of twenty shillings yet to see it, with several editions and to transportation for seven years—but additions, command a circulation in most for these in detail, and for the duties of of the Sabbath schools of Scotland. all officials connected with the Act, and

of parents at the births of their children,

and of other individuals at the other two Practical Analysis of the Act 17th and 18th

Bir great'epochs of being-one not compulVictoria, cap. 80 – For the better Registra

sory-the other most certainly, most rotion of Births, Deaths, and Marriages in lem

lemnly so—we must refer to the Act itScotland; with an Appendix containing self.

ning self, or, better still, to its Analysis. the Statute Tables of Sheriff doms, Burghs, &c.; and a copious Index. By GEORGE • Births must be registered within SETON, Esq., Advocate, M.A., Oxon, days; deaths, within eight days; and marriages,

within three days of the respective events occur. &c., &c. Edinburgh: Thomas Coo

ring; and they must be recorded in the parishes stable & Co.

(or districts) within thich they rei perticely occur. 3-VII


By the Rev. ALEXANDER RATTRAY, M.A., Minister of Camlachie, Glasgow.

“They go from strength to strength."-PSALM lxxxiv. 7.

In forming our ideas about Heaven, there features which are the crown and glory is no more impressive aspect under which of his being. Subjects of a law of sinit is possible to represent it, than that willing slaves of a cruel and despotic which is given in the text, as a state of master-living in the servitude of Satan, advancement and moral progress. Let us and the still more degrading servitude of consider for a little this subject of Christ our own lusts and passions--we have ian progression. I do not think that the bartered away our freedom — we have text refers to progression in knowledge. paralysed our energies, and rendered ourSuch a progression, no doubt, will char- selves incapable of a true and hearty obeacterize the mind in a future state. We dience. “But God, who is rich in mercy, are born with capacities for knowing ; for his great love wherewith he loved us, we have powers and faculties susceptible even when we were dead in sins, hath of an endless development; all experience quickened us together with Christ; and testifies to this truth, that growth is the hath raised us up together, and made us law of our intellectual as well as of our sit together in heavenly places in Christ moral being. Immortality preaches the Jesus.” Holiness, then, is not natural to same doctrine, and warrants us in enter- us; it is conferred upon us; it is the gift taining the largest expectations, in respect of God. And in the possession of this of that comprehensive grasp of truth, in boliness there is room for growth. It is all its exhibitions and relationships, which a progressive thing; it is self-developing. constitutes one of the grandest objects of It is planted as a seed in the heart of a human ambition. And what has the regenerated man-it is blessed with most Word of God revealed to us on this sub-genial influences — heaven's light and ject? “Now,” says Paul, “ we know in heaven's sunshine are poured upon itpart, and we prophesy in part. Now we the olden promise is fulfilled—“I will be See through a glass darkly; but then face as the dew to Israel ;” and day by day, to face: Now we know in part; but THEN under the fructifying power of the Holy chall we know even as also we are known." | Spirit, that seed springs and germinates,

The progression more immediately re- shoots upward into beauteous flower, and ferred to in the text is a moral progres- | finally matures into rich and glorious sion.

fruit. Here, therefore, we have a graFirst, consider what features of our dually unfolding process — a series of being are the subjects of progression, transition states, each conducting from which constitute a Christian's character, a lower to a higher stage of Christian exand therefore shall form the subjects of a cellency and perfection ;-"from strength Christian's growth. These are Holiness to strength.” and LOVE. We are commanded to be- What is a Christian's life, but the exCome holy, for God is holy. Holiness is hibition of perpetuated efforts and strivalso the demand and necessity of our ings to reach forward, to a yet more moral nature. How miserably short do striking and consistent imitation of Jesus we all come of fulfilling the obligations Christ; the putting off more and more that are laid upon us by the Word of | the old man—the putting on more and God and the testimony of conscience! more the new man—the attainment of Strange and deep is the natural aversion a closer walk with God-of a calmer, of man to exhibit in himself the moral , more heavenly frame of mind, temper, and disposition — the rising above the venly love is the moving inspiration of a world, and the realizing of God's presence Christian's conduct. Love is the mark and God's love ? Consider Paul. This and test of the growth of a child of God. man was a wonderful and glorious illus- “There is no fear in love; fear hath tortration of Christian transformation. But ment: but perfect love casteth out fear." his Christianity was ever expanding and Never can we say of a man that he is ever progressive. It was his grand aspir- growing in grace, till he can testify that ation, “This one thing I do, forgetting be strives after a holy life, not because those things which are behind, and reach- he dreads the consequence of sin, but ing forth unto those that are before, I because he hates sin as God hates it, press to the mark, for the prize of the and loves holiness as God loves it-till high calling in Christ Jesus.” We have out of a rich experience he can say, exnothing to do with the past, we are chil. / ultingly: “I am no longer the slave I dren of the future-we have entered on was-going about my Master's work in an endless career-we can never exhaust the spirit of a wretched drudge; I have the stages of Christian progression-we risen to the high conception of adopare destined for ever and ever to rise ; tion in Christ Jesus; I feel, and think, “from strength to strength ;" "from glory and act, as a child of God; and, in spite to glory;" for “the path of the just is as of weakness and besetting sin, I can look the shining light, which shineth more and upon His face in peace, and cry with demore unto the perfect day."

vout assurance, “My Father who art To illustrate this growth in holiness, in heaven.'Truly, brethren, of such a take but one instance. A man may be- man we can say that he is growing come holy, or rather moral; he may in grace, and rising from “ strength to strive to keep the commandments of God, strength." actuated simply by the fears which are We have said that Christian progreshis only motives to obedience. Let him sion includes a growth in love. Why but practise evil-let him but cherish the should we stop to illustrate so obvious a purpose of unholy action, and his con- | truth ? Love, from its very nature, is science is awakened; the terrors of the susceptible of an endless development. Lord are upon nim; notes of warning Who that has ever loved-loved as a sounded in his ear, of a future judgment mother, a sister, a husband, a wife, a -a future retribution; the man trembles friend-does not know that to love once -the man is arrested-he dares pot pro | is to love for ever? Years cannot change ceed further; and thus, through the affection, nor extinguish the sacred fires mercy of God, he is saved from sin. that burn impassioned in the human Many a Christian may be thus holy, but heart; or if there is change, it is only the it is holiness in its lowest conception, change which marks the progress of the based upon a wretched foundation, and risen sun, whose rays, as they shoot uptherefore in itselt weak and not to be de- ward to the zenith, kindle in intensity, pended upon. Observe now the advanced and augment in splendour, and diffuse Christian, the man who has passed over hill and valley a more genial heatthrough successive stages, and is rising a richer colouring—a fuller glory. to perfection. What are the motives Christian love is still more distinthat weigh with him in his holy walk | guished for its progressive character. and devout conversation? They are all Modelled after the love of Christ, it is comprehended and summed up in one word undecaying and everlasting. However -love. No man can be true-hearted and feeble, and mingled with grosser elements, sincere in his practice of obedience who as everything heavenly must on earth be is not governed by this principle. It is so alloyed, it will one day be purified love alone which can strengthen for the from the base admixture of worldliness performance of duty and the endurance and selfishness; it will emerge refined of trial. All duties are easy, and all and spiritualized; it will rise emanci burdens light, when devout and hea- pated from corruption, like the soul of which it is the life; it will glow into the precious gold. Love is the magnet that ore of seraphim, or, rather, in the view proves universally attractive the elecof that intensified flame, the love of sera- tric fire that forges everlasting bonds of phim will pale and expire, for they can- friendship and sympathy, and amalganot know the love which animates the mates into one the most opposite of throng of the redeemed who have washed natures. It is this maturity of love which their robes and made them white in the creates and perpetuates the vast distincblood of the Lamb.

tion between earth and heaven. Here, Farther, I remark, there are two fea- as we know in part, so also we love in tures of character as connected with love, part; there as we know even as we are in relation to both of which there is and known, so shall we love even as also we must be a marked progression. Chris- are loved. CHRISTIANS ON EARTH UNItian men may be said to grow, inasmuch VERSALLY LOVE THE SAVIOUR; CHRISas they become MORE LOVING and MORE TIANS IN HEAVEN UNIVERSALLY LOVE LOVEABLE. These aspects are not iden- EACH OTHER. Loving and loveable are tical. A man may love, and yet in him- the grand characteristics of redeemed self, alas, be uulovely. Is there any more and happy spirits. frequent phenomenon in human life? In further discoursing on this subject, I Everywhere about us are beings whose have to remark, that Christian progreshearts are the seat of strong attachments sion is a NECESSARY thing. The law of which are unreturned and unreturnable. progression, indeed, obtains universally Is it not the fate of many to appear to in the natural and moral worlds. Notheir fellowmen as a root out of a dry thing in the former is sure to be at once ground, without form or comeliness, and perfect and completed. All existences when they see them, there is no beauty are originally partial and fragmentary. that they should desire them? Nor is it The flower of rich and matured beauty always otherwise even with Christians. was once but a seedling in the ground. It is strange, but true, that the Gospel The oak that has waved in the forest for does not always make a man lovely, a thousand generations, was once but a There are natural characteristics which tender germ, embosomed in a despised are not obliterated by the transforming acorn. The child, also, is father of the power of God's Spirit. Temper and dis- man. How beautiful is childhood cradled position, habits and pursuits, may still in a mother's arms; but faint and imper. act as repellant forces even in the case of fect is that infantine grace and loveliness those who are drawn together by many in comparison with that which is afterties—one faith, one baptism, one Lord, wards unfolded. Thus, we observe, that and one hope of their calling.

everything on earth is brought under The religion, too, of men of peculiar and subordinated to the law of growth. temperament, is frequently distinguished And, as in the natural, so also in the by a spirit of austerity and asceticism al- moral world. Just as the body shoots together foreign to the scope and ten- upwards in stature, so does the mind exdencies of the New Testament. Hence pand in intellectual vigour and moral the spectacle of want of honour, harmony, character. Newton and Milton were once and brotherly charity, which separates children, ignorant even of the alphabet Christian from Christian, community of knowledge. The childhood of Paul from community. The growth of love, and John, probably, passed away without the development of the amiable virtues any indications of their future eminence and kindly sympathies, recommended by in the Church of God. the Gospel, can alone remove from our And, as it was with them, so also with Christian profession the stigma which all beings. There is this distinction, gives occasion to the enemy to blaspheme, however, between progression in the Love is the great glorifier of the human natural world, and progression in the soul. Love is the mighty alchemy that moral. In the former, we observe simply a changes the grossest metal into pure and fact; in the latter, a necessity. Not always

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