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THE LORD'S MESSENGER.
What dost thou here, Elijah ?" Like the tide
THERE is a promise in the last chapter of the Old Testament, which may lead some persons to expect that Elijah will appear on earth, to give warning of the second coming of the Saviour. “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord : and he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” * Let us inquire whether Elijah has not already appeared again on earth, and given warnings which have not been regarded.
One of the most zealous labourers in the Lord's vineyard in Germany, Dr. William Frederick Krummacher, has written some very beautiful works, which have been translated into English by the Religious Tract Society. One of them is a most edifying and instructive commentary on the life of Elijah the Tishbite. I read it about twelve years since, and as I was not rich enough to purchase it, I made the following extract from it, thinking at the time, that it was a very remarkable fulfilment of the promise that the name of Elijah should be an instrument in the hands of another of the Lord's servants, to warn parents against continuing the unne. tural system of separating so much from their children, as the schools and colleges with which Europe is crowded are an evidence of. “When Moses, looking upon Israel, exclaimed with delight, Behold how wise and understanding they are, and a glorious people, none will be disposed to question the truth of these words, but those who are acquainted with no other education than what was taught in the schools of Athens, and who know not any higher standard of judgment, than that which is afforded by the show of heathen wisdom and genius. God had reserved to himself the education and instruction of the people of Israel. In their divinely appointed institutions we see the groundplans and models, according to which, the Almighty in the Jubilee, or Millennial age of his kingdon, will call into being that grand renovation which awaits the earth, and all that is upon it, whether animate or inanimate. And as, in the history of this great people, all the institutions of human society find their best models, so do those of instruction in particular. Scholastic institutions, according to the modern system, do not appear to have been known in Israel, at least until the Babylonish captivity. But instead of these, home and school were one, and in the place of paid teachers, instruction was poured forth from the tender hearts of father and mother. The child learned to lisp the name of Jehovah, under the vine and the fig-tree, before the door of the peaceful dwelling. There the sacred histories of antiquity, recounted with the eloquence of affection, passed before its admiring soul. There the ideas of God, and of the great ends of human life, were gradually impressed upon the tender mind—there it early learned that which is eternally true and beautiful, and good for the human mind to know; and this was learned, in the animated imagery of sacred historic record, by many an Israelitish child, almost before it had become conscious that its years of tuition had arrived. Thus it was pleasantly initiated into Israel's wisdom, hopes, and prospects, and guided into a way of thinking, feeling, and anticipating, which penetrated upwards through the clouds of heaven, and forwards through the bounds of time. Having enjoyed the benefit of such a popular education in the highest sense of the word, many a young Israelite came forth from the paternal dwelling, vigorous in body and in mind, with an eye open to everything that is worth observing; susceptible, like good ground, of the best cultivation ; and carrying in his hand, from his very home, the key of scripture, of history, and of nature. The stars of heaven, the trees and flowers of the field, preached to him; and the instructive voices of the Levites and Prophets, which were constantly heard through the country, found in his mind a ready attention.”
* Malachi iv. 5, 6.
Were Elijah again on earth, could he use more appropriate language than the following, taken from the Word of God, to fulfil his mission of turning the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers.
" Give ear, O my people, to my law : incline your ears to the words of my mouth. I will open my mouth in a parable ; I will utter dark sayings of old, which we have heard and known, and our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, showing to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done. For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make known to their children : that the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born, who should arise and declare them to their children : that they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments.*
William Cowper, whose beautiful poetical works have occupied shelves in the libraries of all the nobility and gentry of England, for the last half century; Las in his “Tirocinium, or a Review of Schools,” given many well founded reasons for giving a preference to private tuition, instead of sending boys to schools or colleges. In the poem alluded to, he describes the pleasures of parental instruction.
“A father, blest with an ingenious son,
With what intense desire he wants his home.” Now let us inquire what is the object of this banishing system of education amongst the nobility and wealthy commoners of Great Britain.
I once read a very well written novel, called “Reginald Dalton;" and that book enables me to answer:
that it is to make those young men, on whom the coronets and lands of Great Britain are entailed, from generation to generation, the most experienced gamblers, drunkards, horse-racers, and cigar-smokers, the civilized world can produce.
Now let us take a glance at what are called the “ Learned Professions," into which the younger sons of the nobility and gentry of Great Britain are obliged to enter, to obtain a livelihood, unless they prefer being trained to break the sixth commandment.
I never learned Latin, but I find on referring to Henry Butter's Etymological Spelling Book, that the word “Doctor,” means “a man that has taken the highest degree in Divinity, Law, or Physic, viz : D. D., L. L. D., or M. D., and that it is derived from a Latin verb Doceo, I teach.”
Now concerning the privilege of putting D. D. after a man's name, I have searched the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation, and I have not been able to find that any of the servants of God, of whom that book gives the history, ever had D. D. after their names.
The law is a profession, which derives its chief support from the crimes committed by what are called “the lower classes of society.” And if those confirmed christians, who have promised the Bishops or Archbishops, (who “laid their holy hands” on their heads, during the confirmation ceremony,) that they would “renounce the pomps and vanities of this wicked world,” never “ laid up treasure in earth,” to tempt“ thieves to break through and steal,” there would not be so much occupation for lawyers and judges in criminal courts.
Lawyers are also enabled to live in splendid mansions, and to travel about in magnificent equipages in England, because the people who possess the land in