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for every ray of light that we may have into His own Word-for every drop of dew that may rest upon our own souls-for every particle of power with which He may be pleased to convey our thoughts to the minds of others.

Blessed Spirit, accept this our feeble testimony upon the very threshold of this year; and, whilst we thank Thee and adore Thee for any blessing which Thou mayest have condescended to impart in connexion with this work, we implore Thy teaching, and guidance, and unction, and power, for the time to come. o Thou Holy One-co-equal, co-eternal, and co-essential, with the Father and the Son-we entreat Thee to grant that the time

may never come when Ichabod shall be written upon these pages, because the glory of Thy sacred Person and work shall have departed from them. Lord, let this never be; but come down with fresh light, renewed energy, and Divine power, testifying of the preciousness of the love, the fulness of the grace, the efficacy of the blood, the perfection of the righteousness, the boundlessness of the mercy, the sympathy of the heart, the excellency of the person of Him who is made of God unto us, wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption. We pray Thee to grant that this year may be a special year—a blessed year for the “ GOSPEL MAGAZINE;" that our God may be glorified in it and by it; that souls, many and precious, may be blessed ; the dead quickened; the weaklings strengthened; the timid cheered; the doubting encouraged; backsliders reclaimed; the halting confirmed ; that there may be a portion for each in due season; and that our God, in all, and through all, and by all, may be abundantly glorified. Amen and amen.

Beloved, as to what reference this Scripture may have to the Jews as a people, we do not now propose to inquire. Doubtless the blessings promised in this precious portion, are in reserve for them; when the Lord shall take the veil from their eyes, and give them “ to look upon Him whom they have pierced, and weep and mourn, and be in bitterness as a man is in bitterness for his first-born." When the fulness of the Gentiles shall have come in, then, without doubt, great and glorious things shall be opened out in reference to God's ancient--and still peculiarly preserved and separated-people.

Our present object is to take up the subject as applicable to the Lord's people generally. It is one, at all times and under all circumstances, dear to them, but especially upon the threshold of a new year, and upon the entrance to fresh and altogether unseen and untrodden paths. The flesh may shrink in the prospect of such ; and a thousand fears possess the trembling heart, “What may this year disclose ?” may frequently be the mental whisper. “ How shall I stand ? What shall I do? What hope ? What prospect ?” Here, here, beloved, is the answer. “ And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones : and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.”

Come, poor timid one, be it thine to raise thy drooping head ; lift that languid eye, and read for thyself this gracious promise ; for if thou feelest thy need, doubtless it is for thee-yea, even for thee ! Our text embraces five things :1.- Protection. II.-Provision. III.--Progress. IV.-Pleasure. V.-Perpetuity.

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Now, as the Lord may help us, we shall touch briefly upon each of these.

I. And the Lord shall guide thee continually.Here is guidance, in which is involved protection; for where our God guides, He not only leads, but guards. Many a parent or friend may direct or lead, but cannot always protect or guard. They may have the will, but not at all times the power. There are thousands of positions in which they may be placed, fraught with countless dangers, the which no human eye could foresee, nor human arm ward off. The best of intentions may be attended with the most disastrous of consequences, proving to a demonstration, that “ it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.”

But with God there can be no failure ; with Him, no want of foresight; with Him, no after-thought. “ He is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working."

“ His love is as large as His power,

And neither knows measure nor end." His wisdom, and grace, and power, are all engaged on the behalf of His dear children and towards each and all He displays so much goodness and so much mercy, that to each it at times appears as though He had concentrated, we had nearly said, all that goodness and all that mercy.

Apart from themselves, and not unfrequently in direct opposition to their choice, the Lord leads them through such intricacies and protects and preserves them amid so many and great dangers, that their review (imperfect as it is) renders the whole most marvellous in their esteem. They are filled with the utmost possible astonishment. They see the Lord's kindness in a twofold way_not only in His preserving mercy, but likewise in His preventing goodness. He has preserved them in dangers seen, but how has He prevented and warded off and saved from that destruction into which their will and their way would have led them.

Reader, is it not so ? Hast thou not at this moment a vivid recollection of positions which rendered thy condition most critical ? What if thou hadst had thy way? What if the Lord had not, by an unseen but effectual hand, restrained thee ? What if He had not so wrought as to divert thy course, and to lead thee, as it were, by another route ? Again, has not the issue been a thousand-fold more satisfactory? What comparison will the way thou hadst chosen bear to the way by which the Lord has been pleased to lead thee? and with what delight canst thou now regard the wondrous doings of thy God. But we have not a review merely, but an anticipation. We have a shall

a to the text. “ And the Lord shall guide thee continually. It is future and perpetual. It is not for to-morrow only, nor even for the year upon which we are entering ; but it is for all the days, and weeks, and months, and years of our pilgrimage. Ah, believer ! that just suits such poor short-sighted, way. ward fools as you and ourselves, who cannot see a hand-breadth before us. What a mercy to feel that we are in such hands; that we are under the protection and guidance of such a wise, and loving, and gracious, and sympathizing Friend; a Friend that loveth at all times, and a Brother born for adversity. And, seeing that it is so, how little need have we for overanxiety; how little cause to take upon ourselves that which belongs to the Lord, and which He has engaged to take upon Himself.

“It is enough that He should care,
Why should we the burden bear?"

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If He has led us through intricate paths, is He less able to lead us through them? Is Jehovah's wisdom more likely to fail in 1859 than in any previous year? Is there a shadow of a reason to believe that he will be foiled in time to come any more than in time past ? Will He, who is declared to be " the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever,” cease to be other than He was, and is, and ever will be—God Almighty? Then what ground for comfort is this!

And satisfy thy soul in drought." Here is provision, and this not barely, but amply, even to a personal and heartfelt satisfaction. Naphthali, satisfied with favour, and full with the blessing of the Lord.” How sweet is this; and fully realized, too, by the Lord's people. It was recorded of Israel of old, with regard to the manna, " that they that gathered much had nothing over, whilst they that gathered little had no lack."

There was a sufficiency, and with it a satisfaction. Moreover, when our blessed Lord said to his disciples, “I sent you out without scrip and without purse,

but lacked ye anything ?” They were compelled to reply, “Nothing !” Again. Notwithstanding the number and the spleen of his adversaries, David could sing his love-psalm,“ The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures ; He leadeth me beside the still waters.” “ Thou preparest,” said he, a table before me in the presence of mine enemies; thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over; and then, in the sweet confidence of faith, finding in whose hands he was, and the security of the covenant in which he was interested, he adds, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.”

Brethren, what sure grounds are these to go upon. How blessed is this testimony, and how fully was it ratified and confirmed up to the latest moment of David's history. In sweet keeping with this was the language of the apostle Paul, who, though in his Epistle to the Philippians, he says concerning his embracing Christ, "For whom I have suffered the loss of all things, yet adds, in the same epistle, “But I have all, and abound.” He was satisfied-most thoroughly content-with his portion. Moreover, he testifies to his Philippian brethren, and in common with them to every partaker of like precious faith, “But my God shall supply

“But my God shall supply all your need, according to His riches in glory, by Christ Jesus."

Beloved, will not this suffice ? In connexion with the sweet portion under consideration, are you not satisfied to take the word of our Father and with it to venture forward into all the unseen realities of the coming

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year ?

Beloved, this promise is very full and very explicit-shall "satisfy thy soul in drought." But it consists not in a promise merely ; it is personally realized by the Lord's dear children ; for, in the depths of adversity, and in the midst of the most painful and self-denying outward circumstances, they enjoy, in and from the Lord Himself, that which abundantly recompenses them for all affliction or trial, and renders them so well “satisfied,” that they would have nothing altered. Be their struggles with unbelief and sin whatsoever they may-whatever their agitation of heart or drooping of countenance, there is, after all, that peculiar unearthly something operating within, that renders that expression in the 11th of the Hebrews applicable to their state, “not accepting deliverance.” They would not have it, if so be it were offered them, could they not be assureal that the offer was accompanied with the fullest conviction that it was of the Lord's own free mind and purpose ; and thus the soul, in these depths, does in measure learn that sweet lesson of the apostle, “ I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”

Arrived at this blessed point of experience, we believe that the apostle had nearly done with learning upon earth. It was not long after that he said, “ I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have kept the faith : henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing."

Beloved, be this your aim and ours--the seeking a simple recognition of our Father's hand, and an entire and unreserved acquiescence with our Father's will; then shall we not only know what it is to be “ satisfied in drought," but be indulged with the realization of a foretaste of that acqui. escence and admiration which the redeemed in glory enjoy,

Here, for the present, we leave the subject.

May our God, in the riches of His grace and tender compassion, bless our beloved readers this year in a very special manner. May it be a year of mercy indeed. The Lord the Spirit lead us, beloved, into larger, fuller, more glorious views of the person, work, offices, and character of our adorable Redeemer, this year, than those with which we have ever as yet been indulged ; then shall we pass a satisfactory year indeed.

Some-and the Lord alone knows how many—will have done with wilderness warfare before the year upon which we are entering shall have closed ; and such, as many of our beloved readers during the past year have done, will enter into the joy of their Lord, and so “be ever with the Lord.” Oh, could we assure our readers personally of this fact—that such would, in very deed, be their privilege and their mercy, individually and personally, how striking would be the effect! how dead would they instantly become to time and to time-things ! what a “ setting their house in order” would immediately follow !

Beloved, if this be not the year of your departure, that year is not-cannot be—far distant. It may be that five, or ten, or twenty years shall come and go before your summons arrives; and what are these five, or ten, or twenty years ? Learn what they are-how vain, how fleeting-by those which have passed away.

Be this, then, beloved, a stimulus why you should pray for grace in order to give heed to the exhortation of the apostle, “ Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you."

We are, yours to serve in the bond of peace, College Green, Bristol, Dec. 21, 1858.

THE EDITOR.

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The rock followed the Israelites. If God is with you, you will want Every believer has Christ at his back, neither company nor comfort.-Rutherfollowing him with strength as he goes, ford. for every condition and trial.-Gurnall. It is a terrible stroke to nature to

As Christ rises in your soul, the think of being stripped of all, and not world, the flesh, and the devil must to have a rag of duty or self-righteousconsequently fall.-Romaine.

ness left to look at.-Wilcox.

SEED-SOWING; OR, A WORD FOR JESUS.

-.

SPEAKING of a certain minister, a short ! from which he was, in a few short days, time since, a friend intimated that the transferred to his coffin, and thence to said minister never lost an opportunity his grave

e ! of speaking a word for Jesus; at the Now, when in conversation with him, same time she expressed her opinion and listening to his remarks about the that believers in general fell short in this work in which he intended to engage matter. I, for one, felt guilty. And this Christmas, had I been aware that perhaps this impression was deepened his days were so numbered, how different, by a circumstance of even more recent methinks, would have been the bearing date than the conversation to which I of my remarks. When I saw him rise have alluded.

to leave the room, 'could I have supposed Calling upon a dear aged friend, in he would have never entered it more, or the neiglibourhood of London, who has that I was beholding him for the last for a long season been a great invalid, time; how anxious should I have been her aged but most hale-looking husband to have spoken to him pointedly and entered the room, and we joined for some personally about Jesus. He is, I trust, time in conversation, more particularly now with Him; but the very circumabout the late venerable_Dr. HAWKER, stances in which we were placed, had I and the Rev. SAMUEL EYLES PIERCE, been fully aware of them, would, I think, with whom he had long been on terms have led to closer and more conclusive of closest intimacy. At the expiration intercourse. of some twenty minutes, the friend in Oh, how should these facts teach us to question left the room; and, as I found endeavour to “sow beside all waters." afterwards, was almost immediately

D. seized with illness-took to his bed,

THE RAILWAY CARRIAGE AND MY FELLOW-PASSENGERS.

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I Han hardly placed our wraps in the world.” But my lips were sealed. I carriage, ere a respectable-looking mid- had not the veriest opening for exdle-aged person, and, as I presumed, her changing a word. I took from my two little daughters, stepped in. Christ- pocket à copy or two of “OLD JONAmas was coming, their holidays, I sup- THAN,” which my wife handed to one of pose, had commenced, and cheerful they her little girls; still there was no recogwere; but their poor mother (for such I nition, on the mother's part, of this shall presume her to be) was the very trifling mark of attention. picture of sorrow. I never saw deeper The train passed on, and, arriving at dejection upon the brow of a fellow- length at a junction, we stepped into anopassenger. Her thick veil was drawn ther carriage. Our previous fellow-pasclose over her face, and hour after hour senger followed. The vacant seat next she sat without a movement or a word. mine was now occupied by a lady in deep Shall I say, my curiosity was aroused, mourning, who had just parted with a or my sympathy awakened? I think it similar

than was the latter. I longed to ask what herself. She appeared to be about forty. was the matter. I longed to pour into The train had not long started ere this her seemingly aching heart of the oil fresh passenger asked me if I had any and the balm of Divine consolation. I objection to lower the window a little ? thought she seemed smitten-I hoped of course I immediately complied. Upon sin-smitten; I hoped she was mentally looking towards this latter person, a crying, “What shall I do to be saved ?" few minutes afterwards, I saw her ap"God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” And parently in a fainting condition. I longed to point her to the Lamb of are ill,” said I, suddenly. This roused God, who taketh away the sin of the her, and she replied, “I am, but shall be

person somewhat younger

“ You

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