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wonders of creation, as through a veil, which however thick and impervious to the prying research of unhallowed speculation, is still magnificent and beautiful, and adapted to arest the attention, to awaken and affect all the powers and feelings of the human soul. Here it is the first lesson is imparted of that knowledge, the perfection of which constitutes the fulness of heavenly felicity. The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth forth his handy-work; day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge; there is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard.* By things visible, by all that attracts the eye and meets the ear, by all that addresses itself to the understanding and gratifies the sepses, man is taught the “eternal power and Godhead of Him in whom he lives, and moves, and has his being,” so that he is without excuse if he renders not to him the homage of humble adoration and grateful praise. He that thus “ comes to God must believe that He is” but here he must pause. He is—but who he is and where he is be knows not, and who sball declare it? “We cannot order our speech by reason of darkness." - Behold I go forward but I cannot discern him; backward, but I cannot perceive him ; on the left hand where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see bim.” “Who can by searching find out God? who can find out the Almighty to perfection? It is higher than the heights of heaven, what canst thou do? deeper than hell, what canst thou know? the measure thereof is longer than the earth and broader than the sea.”+ He is—the great, the eternal God, almighty in power and consummate in wisdom, for these attributes, with an active energy unwearied, and a munificence unbounded, are displayed in all the operations of his hands; while goodness, inexpressible goodness pervades the whole. The nature, however, of this goodness, excepting as in “ causing the sun to arise, and the rain to descend on the
* Psalm xix. + Job xxxyii. 19-xxiii. 8, &c.—xi. 7, 8, 9.
the heat the Alman by search right han
evil and the good,” it takes the form of bounty, is faintly apprehended and imperfectly understood ; its exceeding beauty, its perfect purity, its holy harmony with all the other attributes of the great and glorious God, is hidden from the eyes of natural reason; nor can the utmost exertions of its unassisted efforts penetrate the clouds that roll their mysterious folds between the essential glory of the Divine Majesty and the creatures whom he hath formed, and whom he still upholds by the word of his power. - But the humble enquirer after God is not left in hopeless uncertainty to exclaim, “ O that I knew where I might find him!”-for the Almighty hath revealed himself in his word; a light more glorious than that of the material sun irradiates the pages of inspiration, and he, whom in the effulgence of his own upcreated essence, no man can look upon and live-he, who in the righteous distribution of bis vindictive justice, is a consuming fire, shines forth here in the beauty of his holiness, and in the milder rays of his mercy and his love; shines forth not to destroy but to save. The sun of righteousness arises bere with healing in his beams, that those who are walking in darkness and dwelling in the land of the shadow of death, may bebold and rejoice in the glory of their God, behold and live for ever. “For he who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of JESUS CHRIST.” Here it is he speaks, not in the thunder of his power, but in the still small voice of the gospel of his grace, and happy are they whose ears are opened to discern the voice of Him that speaketh.
IOTA. (To be continued.)
HYMNS AND POETICAL RECREATIONS.
THOUGHTS ON A STAR-LIGHT EVENING.
BEAUTEOUS sparklers! as ye roll
Yes, ye tell that power divine
Since the morn, when God's right hand
Ye have kept the track design'd
But can man, his image, say
No! that image once imprest
Now by pride and sin defild,
Yet a ransom has been paid,
Xisel ph! rise on wings sublime
TO A BIRD
So blithe, that wak'd the loit'ring day?
To wile thy captive hours away ?
'Twas not thy prison bars that still’d
The voice of pleasure in thy breast-
Thy note of melody suppress’d.
While one thou lov'st could list thy song
'Twas nought to thee the woodland shade Encaged, and captive as thou wert,
Thou still wert gay and still wert glad.
But now thy little breast is sad
And cold, since what thou lov'st is gone
No more--for now thou art alone.
From morn to night with restless wing
I see thee fit thy prison round,
Might somewhere even yet be found.
Methinks thy melancholy eye
Looks sadly on the cruel bar
In search of one that is afar.
But not a note has ever stolen
Forth from thy breast since she was gone,
From thee-for now thou art alone.
Poor prisoner! many a bosom bound
In earthly chains thy mourning shares
Is hush'd in solitude and tears.
They must not go, though fain they would
To be where those they love are gone-
To stay, where now they are alone.
We'll sing no more on earth, sweet bird,
Where none we love will listen now,
Return and take our sorrow too.
They'll open then our prison doors,
And we shall lay our fetters down-
Or mourn because we are alone.
THE LONELY STAR.
The lines of the cliff were distinguish'd no more-
That boil'd from the waves as they broke on the shore.
The wild winds were chasing the clouds through the heavens,
As in haste to be rid of the last gleam of light; And fleetly they closed o'er each tremulous orb
That essay'd to look out on so fearful a night.
When high in the heavens one pale, single star,
Flitting fast through the vapour was shining aloneHer faint lamp was burning so humid, so dim,
It seem'd she was weeping for those that were gone.
“And wherefore, thou lone one, thus loiter behind,
“In a darkness that yields not to beams such as thine ? “ What pity impels thee, that still thou art here
“Where nothing beside thee has courage to shine ?
“Methinks thou art like to earth's flattering hope,
“A thing ill-befitting the heart where it dwells, “ Which deaf to the reason that bids it away,
“Shines on through a darkness it never dispels :