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and in deciding the happiness of their present and future life. How uncertain is this day! What unseen dangers are before me! What unexpected changes may await me! It may be my last day! It will certainly bring me nearer to death and judgment !--Channing.

LESSON XIII.

EVENING PRAYER. Let us now consider another part of the day which is favourable to the duty of prayer ; we mean evening. This season, like the morning is calm and quiet. Our labours are ended. The bustle of life is gone by. The distracting glare of the day has vanished. The darkness which surrounds us favours seriousness, composure, and solemnity. At night the earth fades from our sight, and nothing of creation is left us but the starry heavens ; so vast, so magnificent, so serene, as if to guide up our thoughts, above all earthly things, to God and immortality.

This period should in part be given to prayer, as it furnishes a variety of devotional topics and excitements. The evening is the close of an important division of time, and is, therefore, a fit and natural season for stopping and looking back on the day. And can we ever look back on a day, which bears no witness of God, and lays no claim to our gratitude? Who is it that strengthens us for daily labour,-gives us daily bread,

-continues our friends and common pleasures, and grants us the privilege of retiring after the cares of the day to a quiet and beloved home? The review of the day will often suggest, not only these ordinary benefits, but peculiar proof of God's goodness,—unlooked for successes,—singular concurrences of favourable events, signal blessings sent to our friends, or new and powerful aids to our own virtue, which call for peculiar thank. fulness. And shall all these benefits pass away un

noticed ? Shall we retire to repose as insensible as the wearied brute? How fit and natural is it to close with pious acknowledgment the day which has been filled with Divine beneficence!

But the evening is the time to review, not only our blessings, but our actions. A reflecting mind will naturally remember at this hour that another day is gone, and gone to testify of us to our Judge. How natural and useful to inquire, what report it has carried to heaven ? Perhaps we have the satisfaction of looking back on a day, which in its general tenor has been innocent and pure, which, having begun with God's praise, has been spent as in his presence; which has proved the reality of our principles in temptation; and shall such a day end without gratefully acknowledging Him, in whose strength we have been strong, and to whom we owe the powers and opportunities of Christian improvement ? But no day will present to us recollections of purity unmixed with sin. Conscience, if suffered to inspect faithfully and speak plainly, will recount irregular desires, and defective notions, talents wasted and time misspent; and shall we let the day pass from us without penitently confessing our offences to Him who has witnessed them, and who has promised pardon to true repentance ? Shall we retire to rest with a burthen of unlamented and unforgiven guilt upon our conscience ? Shall we leave these stains to spread over and sink into the soul? A religious recollection of our lives is one of the chief instruments of piety. If possible, no day should end without it. If we take no account of our sins on the day on which they are committed, can we hope that they will recur to us at a more distant period, that we shall watch against them to-morrow, or that we shall gain the strength to resist them, which we will not implore ?

One observation more, and we have done. The evening is a fit time for prayer, not only as it ends the day, but as it immediately precedes the hour of repose. The hours of activity having passed, we are soon to sink into insensibility and sleep. How fit that we resign ourselves to the care of that Being who never sleeps; to whom darkness is as the light, and whose providence is our only safety! How fit to entreat him that he would keep us another day; or if our bed should prove our grave, that he would give us a part in the resurrection of the just, and awake us to a purer and immortal life. The most important periods of prayer have now been pointed out. Let our prayers, like the ancient sacrifices, ascend morning and evening. Let our days begin and end with God.-Channing.

Lesson XIV.

THE SONG OF HEAVEN.
Harps of eternity! begin the song;
Redeemed, and angel harps ! begin to God-
Begin the anthem, ever sweet and new,
While I extol Him, holy, just, and good,
Life, beauty, light, intelligence, and love!
Eternal, uncreated, infinite!
Unsearchable Jehovah ! God of truth!
Maker, upholder, governor of all :
Thyself unmade, ungoverned, unupheld.
Omnipotent, unchangeable, great God !
Exhaustless fulness ! giving unimpaired!
Bounding immensity, unspread, unbound !
Highest and best ! beginning, middle, end.
All seeing Eye! all seeing, and unseen!
Hearing, unheard ! all knowing, and unknown !
Above all praise ! above all height of thought!
Proprietor of immortality!
Glory ineffable! Bliss underived !
Of old thou built'st thy throne on righteousness,

Before the morning stars their song began,
Or silence heard the voice of praise. Thou laid'st
Eternity's foundation stone, and saw'st
Life and existence out of Thee begin.
Mysterious more, the more display'd, where still
Upon thy glorious throne thou sitt'st alone :
Hast sat alone ; and shall for ever sit
Alone-invisible, immortal One!
Behind, essential brightness unbeheld.
Incomprehensible! What weight shall weigh?
What measure measure Thee? What know we more
Of Thee? what need to know, than Thou hast taught,
And bidd'st us still repeat, at morn and even ?
God! everlasting Father! holy One!
Our God, our Father, our eternal All:
Source whence we came, and whither we return;
Who made our spirits, who our bodies made ;
Who made the heaven, who made the flowery land ;
Who made all made; who orders, governs all :
Who walks upon the wind; who holds the wave
In hollow of thy hand; whom thunders wait;
Whom tempests serve : whom flaming fires obey;
Who guides the circuit of the endless years :
Sittest on high, and mak'st creation's top
Thy footstool ; and behold'st below Thee, all-
All nought, all less than nought, and vanity.
Like transient dust that hovers on the scale,
Ten thousand worlds are scattered in thy breath.
Thou sitt’st on high, and measurest destinies,
And days, and months, and wide revolving years :
And dost according to thy holy will;
And none can stay thy hand ; and none withhold
Thy glory; for in judgment, Thou, as well
As mercy, art exalted; day and night,
Past, present, future, magnify thy name:
Thy works all praise Thee; all thy angels praise :
Thy saints adore, and on thy altars burn
The fragrant incense of perpetual love :

They praise Thee now; their hearts, their voices, praise,
And swell the rapture of the glorious song.
Harp! lift thy voice on high! shout, angels, shout!
And loudest ye redeemed! glory to God,
And to the Lamb, who bought us with his blood,
From every kindred, nation, people, tongue,
And washed and sanctified our souls ;
And gave us robes of linen pure, and crowns
Of life, and made us kings and priests to God.
Shout back to ancient Time! Sing loud, and wave
Your palms of triumph! Sing, Where is thy sting
O Death? where is thy victory, O Grave ?
Thanks be to God, eternal thanks, who gave
Us victory through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Harp, lift thy voice on high ! shout, angels, shout!
And loudest, ye redeemed! glory to God,
And to the Lamb—all glory, and all praise ;
All glory and all praise, at morn and even,
That come and go eternally, and find
Us happy still, and Thee for ever blest.
Glory to God, and to the Lamb. Amen.
For ever, and for evermore. Amen.

Pollok.

LESSON XV.

THE INFLUENCES OF RELIGION.

It is in the affections of the heart, and in the conduct of the life, that the effects of the Spirit's influences display themselves in the loveliest forms and in the highest glory. Antecedently to the operations of that mighty agent upon the soul, the breast was the seat of carnal, depraved, and malignant passions, which, at the slightest degree of irritation, were ever ready to burst into a flame. The first fruit of the Spirit is love love towards

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