« AnteriorContinuar »
them, and soon we shall bid them Courmayeur that evening, and we farewell. But I will leave you a prepared for our departure without remembrance; I will give you a
loss of time. The sky was clear, treasure which will serve for " and the air sharp; the first rays light to your feet, and a lamp to of the sun were enlightening the your path.” See, here is a New tops of the mountains, while all Testament, my dear friend ; this is beside was still in the shade. The the word of God; it contains the scene was as calm and grand as on glad tidings, and it will be your the preceding evening, In this delight if you examine it sincerely, desert place the return of day and if you receive all the truths brought with it no noise, or mark it contains as if God were speak- of animation. As before, we heard ing them to you himself. May only the torrent and the bells of it be blest to you and to many our young herds-boy's goats; for others, and may we one day meet he had led them out of the stable, again before the throne of the and there he stood, with his eyes Lord, and praise him together fixed upon us, saluting us with his eternally.'
hand, and watching our departure. The herds-boy received the We cried out adieu to him, and I gospel with respect. He seemed
He seemed added, "Remember us.' He anaffected by my last words, and swered me with a motion of his kept near us, as if it required an head. We set forward, and for a effort to leave us. It was time to long time we could see the little return. The air had become keen, goat-herd in the same place, folnight was coming on, and we bade lowing us with his eyes; at length adieu to the young goat-herd, the road turned, and we saw him This simple meeting, and these few
I retraced some steps to words exchanged with a poor boy, make him one more friendly sign, left on us a sweet and solemn which he returned again and again, impression, and a sensation of that and then I rejoined my companions. joyful hope which one occasionally As we proceeded I thought on his experiences, when one has been juvenile faith, which the reading of enabled to sow some seed of the the Word of God would donbtless word of life. We know that enlarge and strengthen. I said to wherever it falls, even upon a rock, myself, this poor child, destined if God blesses it, it will bear fruit, as he is to live among these and we intrust it to him. Thus it mountains, almost always alone, far is that the most trifling circum- from the corruption of towns and stances, when they are enlivened their temptations, needs as much by the expectation of what God as myself to know and believe that may do with
them, assume Jesus is “the way, the truth, and peculiar character, which gives the life," and the faith, which them an importance and a charm. is my compass in the midst of a
We passed a quiet night in our more stormy and rocky sea, is still little cabin, shaken as it was by indispensable as a guide to him, the winds. It consisted of only who has above all things to fear two rooms, a kitchen and a goat and to contend with his own heart. house; and the partition was so I seemed never to have better unthin, that beasts and men might derstood, that the gospel addresses have thought themselves lodged itself to all, and that, be a man's together. Our guides awoke us at situation what it may, he is in want day-break. We had a long journey of these glad tidings. before us, for we wanted to reach
THE TWENTY-THIRD ANNUAL ADDRESS, OF THE
MINISTER OF IVER TO HIS PARISHIONERS.
JANUARY 1, 1833.
MY DEAR FRIENDS.-When I how to meet and to defeat its violook back on the events of the past lence. Surely minds unaccustomed year, and call to mind that ap to acknowledge God's interference palling pestilence, with which our in the world, can hardly fail to country in so many places, and perceive, it was His doing, though our own parish amongst the rest, unseen. has been visited, -can I begin my
But the real Christian does not pastoral Address for the year, on acknowledge a providence only, which we are permitted to enter, by when he cannot assign a secondary a more suitable acknowledgment, cause : he would not the less see, than “ that it is of the Lord's mer nor the less own, the hand of God, cies we are not consumed, because had the cause and the cure of this his compassions fail not!” Can I fell disease been as well undercall you
to the exercise of a more stood, as they are confessedly seasonable duty, than to pour out unknown. The Most High works your hearts in thanksgiving to Him, by these very agents-air, earth, who has “ spared, when we de water ; but still it is not less His served punishment, and in His work, than if wrought by his immewrath remembered mercy ?” diate fiat, and He were heard in an
Yes, He who sent this awful audible voice to say to the disease, visitation, has himself arrested its Come, and it cometh : go, and progress: He, who commissioned
it goeth!” the destroying angel to go and slay Now, if under the pressure of through the length and breadth of such visitations, prayer to God the land, after a while, graciously were not a commanded duty, still repented him of the evil, and said the real Christian would instincin accents of tender commiseration, tively flee to prayer, as his relief “ It is enough : stay now thine and solace in the hour of calamity! hand !”
- how much more, when it is a Oh ! how can any one be so duty so affectionately urged upon blind as not to see, and so hard of us by God himself! and to the heart as not to confess, that the due performance of which the prodesolating Cholera was a scourge mise of His help is inseparably sent direct from the Almighty to annexed. “ Call upon me in the the guilty nations of the earth ? day of trouble : I will deliver Its cause is a mystery, and its cure thee." Psalm 1. 15. «Thou shalt a mystery still! We are as yet, make thy prayer unto Him, and and may perhaps for ever,
remain He shall hear thee.” Job xxii. 27. ignorant of its origin, and its
“ Is any among you afflicted ? let remedy. At one time its source him pray.” James v. 13. was thought to be in the air -- at prayer of faith shall save the sick.” another, in the water-at another, James v. 15. Many such prayers, in the earth! Many a time has a I doubt not, have gone up from sure and unfailing remedy been believing hearts, since this dreadful announced ; and just as often has visitation reached our shores - and it mocked the discoverer's hopes. from some, I would fain hope, whom And as we know not how it came, I am now addressing. . And who nor how it went, neither do we can say, that these prayers have not know, should it return upon us, moved Him, who moves the world,
to mingle mercy with his just judg- cut off in the midst of “sins going ment, and not to suffer His whole before them to judgment.” displeasure to arise ?
Others there were, a goodly But, if it was our bounden duty number I trust, to whom sudden and our best resource, to flee to death was sudden glory—who died, Him in the hour of danger--and as they had lived, resting calmly commend ourselves and all that on the only sure foundation. They were dear to us, to His guardian found, that “neither life nor death, care and covenanted mercy
in nor things present nor things to Christ; surely now, that the heavy come, could separate them from cloud seems to have passed away, that love of God, which is in Christ it is not less our duty, nay, it
Jesus our Lord.” Of one such I should be the delight of our hearts, can confidently speak -- a near and to fall low upon our knees before dear relative * who died of this his footstool, and to thank him fatal malady in thirty hours. She with a gratitude as deep and as found Him faithful to the last, intense, as if we had seen his arm “ whom not having seen she had stretched out in open day, to pro- loved,”—and when heart and flesh tect us and our families; or had failed, and all hope of life was heard his voice controlling the pes- gone, declared with her parting tilence, “ Thus far shalt thou go, breath, Jesus is precious, very, and no farther !”
very precious to me!'-Oh my Oh, let the fond parent, as he friends, what has the world to looks with delight upon his darling offer, compared with such a hope children, remember, by whose at such an hour ? sovereign grace it is, that, while And now let me put the quesso many were taken, his were left ! tion round to each of you, with the Let the husband bless the Lord, utmost solemnity, and as in the for sparing to him the wife of his sight of the heart-searching God! bosom; and the wife confess his How would it have fared with goodness, that she is not now you, had you been of the Twenty widow indeed. Let the families, thousand seven hundred, who fell where death has not made a breach, victims to this dire disease within encircle his throne with thanksgiv- the borders of our
own land ? ings, who suffered not the plague Were you prepared to meet your to enter their dwellings, but bade God, and answer at his bar for the the destroyer pass by their door. things done in the body? Had
Neither the Mortality, nor the you ever felt His Spirit at work Mercy, must ever be forgotten ! with your consciences; and con
Alas, how many dwellings, vinced of your guilt and danger, where health and joy had long as sinners, had you fled for refuge resided, were on a sudden changed to the hope set before
and into houses of woe! Hundreds, made your peace with God through nay, thousands were snatched, from the blood of the cross? Was your the enjoyment of life and the bosom life consonant with your profession, of their families, without any warn- and your conversation such as being, and if unprepared, undone for came the gospel? Then you might
A few days of writhing have faced the cholera with its agony, terminated the life of most; deadly hue and its frightful agonies, a few hours, the existence of some. without dismay: then you would Not a few awful to relate !- have had a good hope through were summoned into the presence grace, that your sins were forgiven, of a thrice holy God from scenes and your heavenly Father reconof drunkenness and revelry, from riot and debauchery. They were
* Mrs. Ward's sister,
çiled; and though your last suffer draw in contagion-the next drop ings might have equalled those of of blood that mounts to the brain, the martyr Stephen, you would, may break in on its mysterious like him, have fallen asleep in recesses, extinguish life-and hurry Jesus, and awaked to a joyful you into Eternity!
Oh, who can resurrection !
bear a miserable Eternity ! But, oh, I dare not indulge this Do you ask me, who will be bright hope of some, whom I am consigned to everlasting burnings, now addressing. God knows the and to the worm that will never sorrow of heart with which I utter die ?---I answer without hesitation, it; but my conscience compels me you, and you, and you—if you will to speak out! Are there not those not turn and repent, --if you persist amongst you, who are living with
evil ways—if you continue out God and without Christ in the to turn a deaf ear to the voice of world; and who, had they died conscience—and resist the strivings of cholera, would have died with of God's Spirit, and count the blood out hope, and gone where hope of the covenant an unholy and a never comes ? What would have worthless thing! become of the Sabbath-breaker, Oh think, how many have already of the blasphemer, of the drunk gone into eternity, who were shaard, of the dishonest, of the licen rers in your sinful excesses! Count tious ? Had death overtaken you the names of those, who lie in the in your career of wickedness, while burying place of the dead, whom sinning with a high hand against perhaps you were the means of God and your own soul, how would seducing into sin, or hardening in your last moments have been em their iniquity! Were you now cut bittered by the remembrance off in your present evil courses ; had reason and effection been were the blood that now flows in spared-of an ill-spent profligate your veins, chilled in its progress, life! What an agonizing review and suddenly stopped ; were an in the closing hour-to think of angel commissioned once more to privileges abused, warnings disre send a pestilential blast across the garded, the Bible neglected, Sab land, and to mark you out as the baths profaned, God's name in first who should sicken and die, sulted, his people mocked, heaven what would become of
soul slighted, hell deserved !
through this vast, this endless Do you now laugh at the threat eternity? enings of the Most High? Do you Oh, let not these solemn warnnow jest with your gay and thought- ings be disregarded : too many less comrades about the torments have been slighted already: these of hell ? Do you say, the cholera may perhaps be the last I may bas abated its fury, and a sudden give, or you receive! Be wise, death need no longer be appre
ere it be too late! Trifle not with hended ? and therefore you will convictions! If you now feel some return, as the dog to his vomit, to misgivings of conscience, stifle your guilty pleasures, saying, them not; rather seek some secret • To-morrow will be as this day, place, where you may weep bitterly and more abundant.'
for your past negligence, and your O foolish and unwise, do not many transgressions. But, mind, madly deceive yourselves - God bring forth fruits meet for repenthas many more arrows in his qui
Turn at once to God ver, beside the cholera ! Diseases through Jesus Christ our Lord ! innumerable await his bidding : in
besettthe midst of life you are in death! ing sins, though dear to you as a The next breath you draw, may right hand or a right eye! Pray
grace to renew your hearts and The alternative, remember! isto reform your lives!
Ruin! What a poor thing, after all, is Make then this Reform your that REFORM in Parliament, on chief concern ! I beseech
minds were so passion- so, by the mercies of that God, ately set, compared with the renewal who has so long borne with your of your hearts, and the REFORM neglect, and yet waiteth to be of your lives! and those ELEC- gracious-by the precariousness of TIONS,so eagerly contested through- life and opportunities - by the worth out the country,-can they bear of your immortal souls, and the competition with making, “ your terrors of the second death!- by calling and election sure ? "
the bliss of heaven, and the pangs We have, blessed be God, a of hell !-and, allow me to add, by representative in heaven, one who the joy which such a Reform will ever liveth to make intercession- cause to your ministers and godly one whom the Father heareth friends on earth-yea, to the spirits always; one who holds not his high of the just made perfect in heaven; appointment of Saviour by your and amongst these, to my own dear choice, but has bought it with his departed child,* who in the latter own blood !-Be it your grand days of her sojourning here, so ambition to be CHOSEN of Him, eagerly sought your spiritual weland your earnest desire to bear the fare,--and whose early, but happy marks of his ELECT! Renounce death, was hastened perhaps by her all, that is inconsistent with his affectionate zeal to win others to holy service --your evil principles, that Saviour, whom she had found your evil companions, your evil so precious to her own soul! practices. Flee from temptation. But, she, BEING DEAD, YET Shun those haunts of vice, those SPEAKETH! plague spots of the land, those Oh then, in the strength of abominable beer-houses ! Return Christ, make, like her, a wise, a to your forsaken church! Read happy, and a lasting choice ; and your neglected Bible! Bend your rather than enjoy the pleasures unaccustomed knee to God in of sin for a season, choose, if need prayer!
be, to suffer affliction with the Be assured, He willeth not the people of God; for, so doing, you death of a sinner, and would gladly will also choose their comforts on record of you, as of one of old; earth, and their glory in heaven! 5. This
Son was dead and is I remain, my dear friends, your alive again-He was lost and is affectionate minister, and faithful found."
servant in Christ, This would be indeed REFORM
EDWARD WARD. -the only REFORM that will
* Jane Ward, who died in the Lord, make your condition truly blessed. April 15th. 1832.
DEAR SIR,—You called the attention of your readers lately to the subject of selections of Psalms and Hymns for the use of churches; which are becoming very generally adopted, and to which the attention of every pious clergyman has been
more or less directed. The subject is so important to the interests of true evangelical religion, as to be worthy of the notice of a « Christian Guardian.' Perhaps your experienced correspondents will say more on this head, and