Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

DOES GOD DWELL IN YOUR HOUSE ?

Do YOU READ HIS HOLY WORD MORNING AND EVENING, AND PRAY WITH YOUR FAMILY ? God has made you the head of your house for the purpose of training up your family in his ways and for his service. Of Abraham he said, “I know him that he will command his children and his household after him, that they shall keep the way of the Lord.” Gen, xviii. 19. Joshua said, " As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Josh. xxiv. 15. God constituted the family relation, “that he might have a godly seed.” Mal. ii. 15. The everlasting happiness of your family depends on their being servants of God. You must be destitute of the best of feelings, if you do not desire the welfare for time and eternity of your wife, children, and servants. God says, “ These words which I command thee this day, shall be in thy heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Deut. vi. 4-9; and by Jeremiah, "Pour out thy fury upon the families that call not on thy name.” Jer. x. 25. Philip Henry used to say, “ If the worship of God be not in the house, write, ‘Lord have mercy on us,' upon the door, for there is a plague, a curse in it." His son Matthew said, “ A family without prayer is a house without a roof, open to every storm, and exposed to the wrath and curse of God."

DO YOUR CHILDREN AND SERVANTS REGULARLY ATTEND UPON FAMILY WORSHIP? It is of the greatest importance to form a regular habit for them. To do so, you must be very particular in requiring their attendance. Neglecting this duty to your servants, by their influence and example they may undermine the principles you would cultivate in your children, and defeat all your exertions. Few persons properly estimate the influence of servants upon the children of a family: it will be felt by them until they die.

DO YOU MAKE CONSCIENCE OF SECRET PRAYER? It is a good plan, not only to pray for yourself, but for each member of your family by name, for whatever you think they need. Pray for the church you attend, its minister and members, and always that the Spirit of God may accompany the word preached with power to the hearts of sinners. Your love for, and practice of secret prayer, is one of the best tests of the honesty and sincerity of your religion. God does not forget secret prayer. Matt. vi. 6. You can. not wish ill to any man, if you sincerely pray, “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” Ministers of the gospel need your prayers. They want praying people. By prayer we bring God to our help. No money, however liberally given, can buy the gift of the Holy Ghost; but prayer enters heaven and draws down the gracious influences of that blessed Spirit. A poor praying member of a church is a greater blessing to it than the influence of many rich ones. Urge your children and servants to pray in secret for the influence of the Holy Spirit to renew and sanctify their hearts. Endeavor to teach them the true nature of prayer, that it is not any form of words, but the offering up of the desires of the heart to God, in the name of Jesus Christ, for things which are agreeable to his will. Give each of them a Bible for their own use, and urge them to read a portion of it every day. Teach them about God-his true character, and their duties to him. Do not let any child or servant go out of your family without a Bible.

How Do YOU AND YOUR FAMILY SPEND THE LORD's Day? It is the Lord's time. It is the hem of the week. Don't waste it. It is more precious than other days. Do you rise as early on it as on other days? Do you use diligence in improving its sacred hours ? Let no unnecessary work be done. Leave none of your Saturday's work that may delay you in entering upon the sacred duties of this holy day. You cannot rob God of his day without loss.

Get all your family ready, and take them to the house of God in good season. Require all to go that are able. Don't let trivial excuses keep any away, and while there keep them under your own charge. Some secure themselves a seat in the house of God, but care not where their children or servants are. A parent or master's duty is as binding in the church as at home.

TEACH YOUR CHILDREN TO REVERENCE AND LOVE God's house? It is the place where he has promised to meet and bless his people. We should love to be where God has said he will be, and should be anxious to appear before him. “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Matt. xviii. 20. The Psalmist said, “ Lord, I have loved the habitation of thy house, and the place where thine honor dwelleth." "One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.” * My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord.” "Blessed are they that dwell in thy house." "A day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wicked. ness." Psa. xxvi. 8; xxvii. 4; xxxiv. 2, 4, 10.

Is THE SERVICE OF CHRIST YOUR DELIGHT ? Do you desire for yourself and children an interest in him, more than all earthly good? You labor to provide food and clothing for yourself and them: do you use as much diligence in seeking the Saviour and striving to lead them to him? All labor for your bodies will soon be over: what have you done, and what are you doing for your souls ? O, what thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.

re that wil days of remple."

Should you neglect to provide food for your family until they died from starvation, you would rightly be judged guilty of their death. How much more guilty, and how much more terrible will be the judgment due to you, who, as a parent or master, have made no provision for the eternal welfare of the souls of your children and servants! In that great and dreadful day, when they shall stand before God, and charge their ruin upon you, what answer will you be able to give? Will you be able to call God to witness how you longed for their salvation; how diligently, and carefully, and regularly you trained them in the knowledge of the way to heaven? Will you be able to point to the days and nights when you plead with him for a blessing upon them? Will they bear witness for you, remembering the family altar, the prayers, and the example which you set before them? Will they say, “We were taught the knowledge of God, to reverence and keep holy the Sabbath-day; were prayed with, and prayed for, and entreated to seek and serve the Lord, and prepare for heaven ?" Or will they, in that day, stand before God your judge, to upbraid you for your unfaithfulness and neg. lect of their souls ?

If their souls are cast into hell, under the wrath and curse of God, how aggravated will be your anguish, to hear one and another charging you, their parents and masters, before an assembled universe, as being instrumental in their damnation ! "Oh, if it had not been for you, this would not have been our place. You never prayed with us, nor for us. You never taught us to read God's word, or to keep his holy Sabbath. You never led us to the house of God, nor taught us that we must worship him. You did not pray with us nor for us, either in your family or in your closet. You never told us that we should prefer eternal things to the perishing things of time.” Some may then say, “ We saw you read the Bible at times, and go to the house of God, but you never urged it upon us. One single word from you as parents and masters, might have kept us out of the evil company into which we were led, and one word from you might have directed us to the Bible, and the Sabbath, and the house of God; but you never spoke to us one word about God and our souls. Now all these opportunities are over; now it is for ever too late. We are ruined, without hope. We chose our own wicked ways and our wicked companions, and you never restrained us. Now, warnings can do us no good. We are lost; LOST FOR EVER, without remedy. But our blood is upon you. A visit to your Family.

NATIONAL PREACHER.

No. 5. Vol. XXVII.]

MAY, 1853.

[Whole No. 317.

SERMON DXCVI.

BY REV. W. A. SCOTT, D.D., New Orleans, LA.

THE WORLD'S FAIR; OR, THE GREAT EXHIBITION OF THE INDUS

TRY OF ALL NATIONS, IN 1851, IN LONDON.* “ Blessed of the Lord be his land,

For the precious things of Heaven,
For the dew, and for the deep that coucheth beneath,
And for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun,
And for the precious things put forth by the months,
And for the chief things of the ancient mountains,
And for the precious things of the lasting bills,
And for the precious things of the earth, and the fullness thereof,
And for the good will of Him that dwelt in the bush.”-DEUT. xxxiii. 13-16.

I propose on this occasion, my brethren, to trace out and read to you some lessons from late events, especially from the great historical act of the year--the Crystal Palace in London, as the exponent of the state of the world up to 1851.

Suggestion is one of the most active principles of the human mind. It ministers greatly to the pleasures of existence, and gives to men of enlarged intelligence the means of various and extensive gratifications. I trust, therefore, that some thoughts on the great event of the year will not be found unappropriate or uninteresting, nor fail to call forth your gratitude to the Creator for his manifold blessings. Associations retrospective and prospective, commercial, national, romantic and religious, cluster around the Palace of Glass. The first of May last ushered in an event unparalleled in the history of the world, and long will it be remembered, and for centuries to come it will inspire the pen of the advocate of commerce, and of peace. The day bas passed away like other days, but the consequences still live.

It was an appropriate time for the opening of the great scene. Every people, from the cold North to the glowing South, has regarded May-day with peculiar interest. It was a festival in olden, as it has been in modern times, and it was the fittest day to inaugurate the triumph of Art. The bright flowers, and the light breeze, and the sweet perfumes; the splendors of earth

• Delivered in the Church on Lafayette Square, New Orleans, Nov. 27, 1851.

--complicated as is its mechanism, every part is adapted to ensure the utmost efficiency in its use ; and so of the arm and bones of the shoulder, and the position of the hand in its relation to the body, legs and feet, and the obedience of the whole body to the mind, on the due exercise of which our elevation is instrumentally and entirely dependent. Inferior creatures possess astonishing powers of instinct. But that power is at once perfected. With them there have been no inventions, no discoveries, and consequently no Great Industrial Exhibition.

" The winged inhabitants of Paradise
Wove their first nests as curiously and well

As the wood-minstrels of our evil day." The comb of the bee, the dwelling of the beaver, and the web of the spider, were as perfect in the days of Noah and Methuselah as in the days of Washington. The dog and the elephant in the days of Nimrod as sagacious as they are now. But man's destiny is progression, through a career of indefinite advancement. The motto of humanity's coat of arms is “ onward, onward," Man has a hand to write and a mind to direct it, and his mind is moved and developed by circumstances, and the result is art and manufacture. The history of the arts, therefore, is the history of mans's physical and intellectual progress. One art arises after another before our view, as the successive memorials of a triumphant course. No instinct, animal or superani. mal, or even angelic, could have produced the Crystal Palace; it is the aggregate of many influences, rising in such developments as educatable mind, gradually increasing and unfolding powers of genius, only could produce. It was a victory of the highest order of intellectual effort over matter--the shrine of mind's loftiest aspirations. Expositions of art have taken place for the last fifty years in the French metropolis, and in the larger towns and cities of the Continent and of Great Britain. As early as 1723 an exhibition of National arts and manufactures was established in Ireland. The Industrial Exhibition in Hyde Park is not then like its own Crystal Palace, the design of one mind and the work of a few weeks. On the contrary, it was like those cairns which are memorial mounds that every passer-by helps to build. Art-unions and trade-sales, and fairs in the large cities of Europe awakened and prepared the public mind-sowed the seed and this is the harvest. The Great Industrial Exhibition is like the aloe, which, in the most favorable circumstances, requires the culture of half a century to bring it to perfection. Never, unless in Milton's Eden, and certainly not there, was there ever seen such a gathering into one place of earth's products, as in the Hyde Park Bazaar. It was a city. like mart, an immense assemblage of shops beneath one crystal roof; such as Bagdad, Cairo, Damascus, Constantinople--nay, the globe itself never contained before. Embosoming in its

« AnteriorContinuar »