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PAGE Directions for Colouring the Botanical Plates of the First Vol. .. 325 Ditto Second Vol.

327 LECTURES ON THE Lord's PRAYER. Lecture VII.-Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors 39

VIII.- Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us

from evil ..........................
IX.-For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and
the glory, for ever .

141 Concluding Lecture.-Amen .........

206 LISTENER, THE

..... 31, 87, 134, 198, 246, 312 MISCELLANEOUS SUBJECTS. Abstract of a Letter to a Studious Young Lady

266 Reflections in a time of Lingering Sickness

270 The French Gloves ...

287 PERSPECTIVE DRAWING .............. 54, 100, 151, 216, 259, 328 REFLECTIONS ON SELECT PASSAGES OF SCRIPTURE.

Luke ix. 54
Luke xii. 45
Luke ix. 23
Matthew v. 7
1 John v. 14
Luke xix. 41

......................
John xi. 10
John viii. 31
Psalm xe. 14 ...
Psalm ciii. 2 iro
Psalm l. 21. .
1 Cor. xv. 19

...............................
Malachi jii. 16

131 1 Thess. v. 22

132 Matthew xix. 30

133 Job xxxi. 2

196 Job xxxvii. 14

197 Psalm xxxiv. 8 Proverbs xii. 25 ...

244 Psalm xxxy. 4

........ ....................... Gal. vi. 22

245 ini...... Eccles. ix. 10

246 Psalm xl. 1

309 ioii......... Jean xiv. 27

310 i............... Psalm lxxii. 10 ..............

311 Rev. iii. 1

312 .............. REVIEW OF Books.

A Tribute of Parental Affection, &c. .........
Father Clement .....

227 Conversations on Botany ..............

228
First Steps to Botany, &c. ..........
Procrastination, or the Vicar's Daughter .
Memoirs of Eminently Pious Women
A Compendium of Algebra ............

286 The English Flora

338 .............:::• Franklin's Tour to the Copper-mine River

Kiver ................ 339

339

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162

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283

283

THE

ASSISTANT OF EDUCATION.

JANUARY, 1824.

A SKETCH OF GENERAL HISTORY.

(Continued from Vol. I. page 312.)

FROM THE DESTRUCTION OF THE EGYPTIAN FORCES IN THE RED SEA TO

The death OF MOSES. . The history of eminent men is the history of the world. It bas pleased the Creator, that at every period there should be some few persons rising so far above the mass of mankind, that by extraordinary talents, distinguished virtues, physical or mental powers, sometimes even by more dauntless wickedness, they should rule the actions and determine the fortunes of all the rest. And the names of these have come down to us, the only key, as it were, to the chronicles of the earth, whose millions and millions of millions have died and left no name, nor any mention of their fortunes or their deeds, but as they may perchance have been connected with the great ones of the earth. The history of a nation, therefore, is made up of the reigns of the kings that governed it—and the history of the world can only be traced by the lives of the distinguished persons who successively or contemporarily presided over its destinies. It is for this reason that we have chosen to divide our sketch of history by the lives of the great men of whom we have to speak, rather than by centuries or any other division of time; and that we proceed to conclude the history of Moses before we turn aside to other matters.

VOL. II.

New and unexampled in the annals of the world was the situation of this extraordinary leader. Forty years he had passed in luxury and splendour at Pharaoh's court-another forty at the sheep-fold - and now he was going forth, at the unexplained command of God, he knew not whither, to perform he knew not what: except in so far as be believed the promised issue of his labours without being informed of the means of obtaining it. He led forth as his army a concourse of men, women, children, and cattle, whom he was to guide through the vast Arabian deserts, never before, perhaps, trodden by the foot of man. They had not travelled three days forward from the borders of the sea, ere they began to feel the fearful strangeness of their situation. They were dying of thirst, and these dreary regions afforded them nothing but stagnant and bitter waters. A little further on, and they found themselves totally without food, in a waste and uninhabited country, bearing not so much, probably, as the wild fruits of the earth. But the earth is the Lord's, and all that is in it. He had determined, and he knew how to perform, in spite of all these natural obstacles. Forty years he fed his people in a manner that cannot be otherwise now explained, but that a substance of a nutritive and wholesome description was daily prepared for them and miraculously supplied. What the substance was we know not-probably nothing with wbich we are now acquainted. And the dry rocks of the desert were com. pelled to supply water at their Maker's bidding.

Three months bad not passed over, ere mortal foes appeared to add to the perils of the way. The Amalekites, descendants probably of Esau, of whom and his rejected race we long ago lost sight, attacked the children of Israel. They had become a nation, inhabiting the northern part of Arabia: the Israelites bad not invaded them, nor was it their land that was given to be their inheritance; but they were idolators and enemies of the God, of whom by tradition they must have heard as the God of Jacob, though Esau had forsaken him: the Lord had determined on their destruction, and commanded his people to perform his purpose. Moses, himself a legislator and a man of peace, appointed Joshua to command the army, and the enemy were defeated with the sword, though not without the evident interference of Heaven. It is difficult to perceive how the Israelites obtained their arms, unless, as is supposed, the bodies of the drowned Egyptians were cast on the shore and stripped of their weapons.

It is here that the first historical mention is made of writing. The Lord commands Moses to write it in a book that the Israelites were to wage war with the Amalekites till their total extirpation. The invention of written characters to represent our words and perpetuate what they represent, is so useful and curious, that some have thought it was miraculously disclosed to men, when God wrote the law himself upon tables of stone. But this command to Moses was given previous to that event: and it is more likely, we think, to have been invented as other things were, by the necessities of man, and to have been learned by Moses in his education at Pharaoh's court; the more, as letters were some time after introduced from Egypt into Greece. It is thought by some that Moses wrote the book of Job previous to this timebut we have no certain information of his having written it at all.

Meantime Moses began to form for his unmanageable multitude, something of a regular government, by choosing magistrates of different degrees to direct and judge them: himself retaining the supreme power, and leaving to Joshua the military command; and to - Aaron the priesthood, to which God appointed him. But though in all this there was much exercise of human judgment and acquired knowledge of the arts of government, he did nothing by the suggestion of his own wisdom; but in all things asked and received immediate direction from God.

The Israelites had all this time been going, not towards the country they were to possess, but farther and farther from it in the desert, till they reached the mount Sinai. It wa' here that about fifty days after their setting out from Egypt, God made that covenant with his people, for the account of which, and the awful manner of its delivery, we must again refer our readers to the holy scriptures.

The Creator in the beginning had made agreement with his new-formed world that they should honour and obey him, and he would be their Father and their God. This agreement had been broken even in Paradise, and men bad forgotten it over all the world. And now coming down again in fearful greatness to the earth, he made a covenant, pot with the world at large of them be took in this no note—but with this single nation of wandering slaves, assembled at the base of the mountain on whose summit he appeared to Moses, their leader, in the midst of a desert where no other eye was near to behold what was passing between this people and their Maker. By this covenant or charter, they were to be incorporated as a distinct people under the immediate government of God himself. Their laws, their mode of worship, their whole system of civil government as well as moral conduct were appointed by him: and on condition of their observance of them, he agreed to put them in possession of the land of Canaan, to defend them in it, and make it fruitful: neither would be leave off to be their protector and their king, till as a nation they rejected his authority. Why he chose this obscure people in preference to nations more numerous and powerful already established upon the earth, it is impossible for us to know; for all the earth was his to choose from ; and if we consider their past history, we shall find nothing in this people to recommend them to his choice. Their story is distinguished from others only by his favours and their own ingratitude. All that we know is, that he chose it, he promised it, and so long as the condition was observed on their part, be performed it-for not till the whole

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