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Divinity is exhaustless. The love of Jesus is immeasurable, surpassing human knowledge. Without beginning, it is likewise without end. As His love, so is His sympathy, which is the expression of that love. Both are inexhaustible. In every time of need, the brotherliness that brought tears into the Redeemer's eyes, is available for the sustenance of those whom He loves. It is true He is not bodily with us. But, just as the eagle surveys, from her lofty elevation in the air, her young lying in their nest down deep below, neither keeps her eye from them, so Christ beholdeth from heaven, the wants of His saints, and cares for them. And as the giant bird descends and relieves the wants of her young, so He who, by His Spirit, is never absent from us, communicates out of the fulness of His love all the sympathy and compassion that we need to awaken joy in our hearts, and to restore to us the delight of salvation. Embedded in Christ's sympathy, as gold is buried in the earth, only to be discovered and utilized by man, is a wealth of hope for the poorest. Poor weary hearts, realize His promises, live on His grace, trust in His word!
It may be that Christ wept because of the human misery that sin had wrought ; that He contemplated something higher than the grief of the mourners. Christ's thoughts and words had reference to deep, underlying principles. Perhaps at the grave of Lazarus He contem. plated the wide-spread misery of sin, the root of that which caused the grief He was witnessing. It has been thought that there was indignant anger in Him when He groaned in His spirit-holy indignation because of the prevalence, of the havoc of sin, and wrath against death, the wages of sin. Perhaps if this anger formed a component part of His grief, it was because of the unbelief by which He was sur. rounded. He came to the grave to show His power over death, to bring immortality to light, to prove by the resurrection of Lazarus that He was the “Resurrection and the Life." Yet among the mourners there were those--and He knew them—whose sinful minds could not grasp the great truth of the resurrection, who denied it altogether, who might witness the miracle He was about to perform, but would go to His enemies, and in their rage and impiety accuse Him before them of being a deyil, of doing miraculous deeds through Beelzebub the prince of devils. What grief must such brutal ingratitude have caused His sacred heart! He came to heal, but the supercilious, sin-poisoned, hell-drugged, diseased ones, profess they are whole, and need no physician, abominate His mercy, trample on His grace, and hound Him to a felon's cross. Such was the prevalence, the intensity, such the frailty of human guilt. He bore the full force of this anger. And yet He weeps !
He wept, I think, as an example. A stoical, hard-grained creed of unbending sternness may suit the unloving, who are indifferent to human woes ; but there is everything in the gospel of love that binds together the brotherhood of man. To weep with those who weep, and to mourn with those who mourn, is at once a privilege and a Chris tian duty. And Christian sympathy has a very high ideal in Christi “ Jesus wept."
To the Christian :-Did Christ bring His love to bear on our common troubles ? Surely then we should read every afflictive dispensation of His providence in the light of His love and sympathy. That sympathy is extended to us on other than great occasions--in the lesser and more common griefs, as well as in the greater troubles. And, lastly, if Christ thus manifested His oneness in practical sympathy with His people, surely here is an incentive for us to cleave closer to Him. The nearer we live in communion with Him the closer will His. sympathy appear.
A NARROW ESCAPE.
A CHILDREN'S STORY. Many of the dear little children | readers will look at the map of have asked me to write them a story; America, and the state of Vermont, and so I will tell them about how a little north-west of Montpelier, God hears and answers the prayers they will see a river called the of little children as well as older | Winooski, or Onion river, which persons.
runs to the north-west, and empties Some may think that children are into lake Champlain. On the south too small or too poor to be noticed side of this river, in the town of by the great God. But that God B- , stood the little brown cottage has sent His dearly beloved Son where I spent my childish days with into this wicked world to save little my widowed mother, who sought to children. And when Christ was on guide me in the fear of God. earth, He called the little ones to His The banks of this river were my arms and blessed them,- not the favourite resort; here I used to good children or the rich children watch the little speckled trout and only, but just such children as we other fishes, sometimes catching the see about us every day, roguish and little fish in my hands, and at other wild and sometimes "disobedient, times dipping my bare feet in the yet Jesus loves them all.
water, picking up shells and pebbles, How blessed it is to think that and making cakes of mud, and doing Jesus loves us, and hears us when as all children do who have a chance We pray! We may be in trouble to play by the water-side. sometimes, and be blamed for some My faithful mother used to watch thing wrong which we have thought over me with an anxious eye, and lessly or carelessly done; and we often cautioned me to be careful may be tempted to deceive to escape about the water, lest I should fall reproof; but Jesus knows all about into the stream and so be drowned. it, and if we carry it to Him in But one day when I was playing on prayer, He will work it all out for the shore, picking up the pebbles our good. Have we done wrong? and skipping them along the water, Let us tell Jesus about it, and He two of my brothers, who were much will give us strength to confess the older and larger than I, came along truth, and will protect us from all where I was, and wading the river at
a shallow place, crossed in safety to Now I will relate what the Lord the other shore. Then they climbed did for me once, when I was a little up the hill-side and were soon out of geri six years old. If my little sight, and I was left alone.
Now you all know that little girls aged to keep my face mostly above do not like to have their big brothers water. run away and leare them alone; and A few rods below me, a large, high so I cried some time about it, rock jutted out into the bed of the and all the more because I knew stream, forming a kind of promon. that orer on the other side there was tory, abore which the current swept a hill where checkerberries were round in a dark and deep eddy. I plenty, and where the children often had often sat upon this rock and went to gather them. I knew, too, watched the foam upon the dark it was time for the berries to be red waters, and had seen shrubs and and ripe, and I supposed my bro flowers and leaves, and sometimes thers had gone to pick some; and the dead animals, floating upon its surmore I thought about it, the more I face, beneath the solemn shade of a wanted to go there too.
huge overhanging elm, which was And now came the temptation. corered by a large grape-vine. I I reasoned with myself, If my bro had always feared this dark and thers could wade across the river shadowy place, and now the current safely, I could do the same; and so, was hurrying me swiftly towards forgetting the warnings of my kind its depths, and I had no power to mother, I rentured out into the escape. stream, I did not fear any danger, Well, “in my distress I cried unto and walked boldlr on. The water the Lord," and besought Him to rose higher and higher about me, hare merer upon me, and to save as step after step brought me nearer me. But still the stream bore me and nearer to the strongest part of | on, -quicker than I can tell the tale, the current in the middle of the the strong current shot past the corstream, Br this time the water was ner of the rocks promontory, and up to my waist, but I thought I the eddy was behind me, and the could cross orer if it did not cover current was yet carrying me on. mr month. But when the mater I still prayed the Lord to save me, came up to my shoulders my little and when a little farther down, the heart began to futter with fear, and stream swept me back towards the then I remembered what my mother shore from which I started, and had told me about the danger of carried me under some overhanging being drowned, and I tried 10 turn Walloors which skirted the river nack to the shore, but found the bank, and whose bending branches Current was 100 strong for me 10 go brushed against my face. Wasn't 1 either backward or forward.
I glad to see them? And didn't I Distressed and frightened. I began stretch up my little hands to grasp to call Mother mother, but them and didn't I cling to them mother was ont of hearing, and no or dear life: Holding to those one olse was near to resove me from branches. I soon drew myself on the waves. Then I remembered shore and ran home, glad that I had what my mother had prerions.r ' escaped from death, but trembling told mo, that * God wonld hear the with the fear of a whipping, which 1 sinner's praver," and I Kfted mr knew that I deserved, and expected heart and roica, crying. * () God. that I shonld surely receive. savo me! God, sate me and In At first I thought I would tell my merer do so again." Rot just as I l mother that I had accidentally fallen began to pray my fat slipped from into the water, and wet my clothes; hemanth me, and awar I weni. swont but I remembered how the Lord had hr the smini artemi, bring on my saved me, and did not dare to tell 8 hack, and the waters dashins vel wicked he. So I concluded to own my hond at times, though 1 mart the truth, and as I remembered how
God had heard my prayer in the to pick checkerberries,” said I, “and water, and delivered me from death, I wanted to go with them, and I went I prayed that He would keep my into the river. I am sorry, and I mother from whipping me when she will never do so again,” said I, heard the story of my fault.
bursting into tears. Being afraid to go in with my wet My mother looked surprised and clothes on me, I crawled in at my frightened, and said, “Oh what a little bedroom window, and got some naughty girl! How did you dare dry clothes, which I put on, and then disobey me? Now you have come hung my wet ones out to dry. I very near being drowned, just bethought at first I would wait for my cause you disobeyed your mother. clothes to dry, but I feared it would You deserve a good whipping for take too long, and so I prayed about this, and if I wasn't in such a hurry it, and concluded to go at once and to get out this web of cloth to-night, tell mother the whole truth. So I you would get it. But if you ever went up stairs, where my mother sat do so again, you won't escape.” weaving at the old loom.
I turned away, and tripped down "What have you got those clothes stairs with a light heart, forgetting on for?” said mother.
all my troubles, and believing that “Because I have been a naughty | the Lord had heard my prayer, and
had helped me to be honest and tell “What have you been doing?" the truth, and had kept my mother said she.
from whipping me. "The boys have gone over the river And this is the end of my story.
THE SLANDERED MINISTER. The position of those who are called to take oversight of the Church of Jesus Christ, and labour therein in word and in doctrine, is one of much danger and delicacy. Exposed to special temptations, confided in and trusted as no others are, bearing a standard which makes them targets for Satan's fiercest darts, they have need of the prayers, the sympathies, the admonitions, and the reproofs of the people of God, while for themselves they must watch and pray lest they enter into temptation.
And while the servant of God must be blameless and well reported of without, he must not thus think to escape reproach, for the more closely he walks with God, and the more eminently useful he is in the world, the more certain he will be to be aspersed, maligned, and accused by the enemies of God and truth.
Doubtless Satan is sometimes allowed to set forth his brood of lies as a warning to some unwary soul, for God only knows how often men have been saved from actual sin by the alarmed and watchful circumspection which some cruel slander has caused them to exercise; and He only knows what blessings have been tasted by His stricken ones, who in their hour of trial have hidden within the secret of His presence from the strife of poisoned tongues.
The Lord has ever been careful of the rights of the aspersed and the accused. To Israel He said, “ One witness shall not rise up against a
man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established” (Deut. xix. 15; Heb. x. 28). And the apostle, when referring to the rumours of misconduct at Corinth, declared that the same rule must govern the admission of evidence there. “In the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established" (2 Cor. xii. 1). This rule he specifically applies to the accusations which may be brought against those who preside in the Church of God, and who labour in work and doctrine therein, when he says, “ Against a presbyter receive no accusation except on the testimony of two or three witnesses ” (1 Tim. v. 19).-Conybeare's version.
The proper course then for the servant of God who can wash his hands in innocency before God, is to keep to his work and leave his accusers in their shame. If he drives fast on the heavenly road he will soon get out of the dust of the devil's wagons. And the people of God are bound to reject those unsustained rumours which are not supported by competent evidence, according to the word of God.
Sometimes, however, it occurs that a servant of Christ is placed in ecclesiastical connection with men who disregard the express precepts of the word of God in regard to this matter, and then upon the testimony of a single witness he is accused and condemned; men of influence giving the weight of their names and position to establish an accusation, which, of itself, should be rejected as the assertion of a single witness, instead of the concurring testimony of two or three.
In such a case, the servant of God can only appeal to the Judge of all the earth, and seeking forgiveness of the Lord for having been entangled in unscriptural alliances with men who dare go contrary to the word of God in the administration of the affairs of the Church, he must await the course of Divine providence, which will eventually plead his cause and bring the truth to light.
Blessed is he who in such an hour can lean upon his God and trust Him to the end. A death-bed sets many things right,—the day of judgment will reveal the rest. But often in this world, a prayer-hearing God interposes on behalf of His trusting ones. A writer relates the following incident in illustration of this principle.
A clergyman, whom I personally knew, was charged, by a woman, with crime. A council, consisting of seven clergymen, with other per sons, was convened. Two days were consumed by a long detail of cir. cumstances, all of which bore the semblance of guilt, and which were sustained by the solemn affidavit and oath of the accusing party Some time about ten o'clock on the closing day, the evidence being al adverse, although the minister solemnly protested his perfect innocence a resolution was introduced to depose him. To this he requested sim ply that the action upon it might be deferred till the next morning which request was granted. He then proposed that the night shoul be devoted to special prayer, saying, “I believe there is a righteou God in heaven, and who, in His providence, governs upon earth. believe I am His servant, and am willing to commit my case to Hin