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which will last for centuries, and carry the author's name down to distant generations. Indeed we are inclined to regard these as Newton's best and most enduring memorial. His sermons have many of them much merit. They have about them a directness, pungency, and lovely simplicity, which must have made them often powerfully effective. They glow throughout with evangelical spirit. To the higher graces of rhetoric they lay no claim. The utterance is plain and unstudied, but there is not a little of pithy expression sometimes bordering on quaintness. The Christian will find these discourses eminently practical, and will read them with profit, nor will he love the truth the less, presented as it here is in unadorned simplicity.
But yet in our judgment there is more vitality in one of his Olney hymns, which we could readily select, than in all his discourses. Those which commence with the lines,
"How sweet the name of Jesus sounds." "He who on earth as man was known." "One there is above all others." "Safely through another week.”
And many others have long been regarded as classic among our sacred lyrics, and will live after the last edition of the sermons has been published.
Newton's labours in the great metropolis were not the least important of his life. Here he prepared the way for the evangelical movement
in the Established church, which commenced at the opening of the present century. What Simeon was at Cambridge, Newton was in London. He was the patron and friend of piety in the Establishment. He was a friend of all. He was bound to make himself useful to all. Hence his series of religious correspondence, which occupies a considerable portion of his works. It is the correspondence of a devoted, patient, sympathising, pains-taking minister of the Gospel, who, with some oddities, had not a little good sense, and an inexhaustible fund of good advice. He was never more at home than in solving a religious difficulty, removing some doubt, confirming a weak faith, or consoling an afflicted spirit. This was his recreation. He asked nothing more.
Thus, in a ministry of nearly half a century, yet a ministry only commenced at the ripe age of 38, he accomplished much. He was not a scholar. He never had even a common school education. His overlate diligence must have left him deficient in classical attainments, yet he preached with acceptance and even admiration for nearly thirty years in the great Metropolis, and exerted an influence which has been felt around the globe. The grace of God made him what he was. His heart indited his sweetest lines, and the Christian church, in making account of her lyric treasures, can never afford to speak, save in terms of respect and affection, the name of JOHN NEWTON.
The Sunday School.
DUTY TO PARENTS. HONOUR thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land.-Exodus xx. 12. Ye shall fear every man his mother and his father, and keep my Sabbaths.-Leviticus xix. 3. Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well-pleasing unto the Lord.-Colossians iii. 20. Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.-Ephesians vi. 1. Let them learn first to show piety at home, and to requite their parents.-1 Timothy v. 4. The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out.-Proverbs xxx. 17. Jesus was subject unto them.-Luke ii. 51.
The commandment to honour and obey our parents is very solemnly given in the Old Testament, and as solemnly in the New. Our blessed Lord shows us a perfect example in this, as in every other duty. We are told very little about His childhood; but we are told this, that "He was subject" to Joseph and Mary. He, the holy God, was, as man, subject to His mortal, sinful parents. O what a reproof to us, when at any time we are tempted to disrespect or disobedience! Some are, no doubt, more favoured than others in this relation; but duty is the same in every case, to honour and obey in all things, as far as can be done without disobeying God, and to requite to our parents in their declining years the care and pains we have cost them in our years of helpless
ADVICE TO BOYS AND GIRLS. WILL the boys and girls try to remember a few brief sentences?
Give your hearts to Jesus Christ. Attend punctually the church and Sabbath school.
Respect and love your pastor and teachers.
JUPITER AND THE SHEEP. THE sheep was doomed to suffer much from all the animals. She came to Jupiter, and prayed him to lighten her misery. Jupiter appeared willing, and said to the sheep, "I see, indeed, my good creature, I have made thee too defenceless. Now choose in what way I may best remedy this defect. Shall I furnish thy mouth with terrible teeth, and thy feet with claws?"
"Ah, no," said the sheep, "I do not wish to have anything in common with the beast of prey."
"Or," continued Jupiter, "shall I infuse poison into thy spittle?"
"Ah, no," replied the sheep," the poisonous serpents are so hated."
"What, then, shall I do? I will plant horns in thy forehead, and give strength to thy neck."
"Not so, kind father. I might be disposed to butt like the he-goat."
And yet," said Jupiter, "thou must thyself be able to injure others, if others are to be aware of injuring thee."
"Must I!" sighed the sheep. "Oh, then, kind father, let me be as I am, for the ability to injure, I fear, will excite the desire; and it is better to suffer wrong than to do wrong. pray thee, let me be as I am."
Jupiter blessed the good sheep, and from that time forth she forgot to complain.-Lessing's Fables.
A GOOD ANSWER.
A YOUNG lady in a Sabbath school a few mornings since asked her class, "How soon a child should give its heart to God?" One little girl said, "When thirteen years old;" another "Ten;" another "Six." At length the last child spoke:-"Just as soon as we know who God is." Could there be a better reply?
CLOSE the door lightly,
She wishes to stay,
Down from the dome;
The sweet welcome home. Come, stricken weeper! Come to the bed, Gaze on the sleeper-Our idol is dead!
Smooth out the ringlets,
O'er the white breast,
Strayed from the biest: Bear her out softly, This idol of ours, Let her grave-slumber Be 'mid the sweet flowers.
LONGING FOR OTHERS.
It is recorded of the devoted John Welsh, that he used to keep a plaid upon his bed, that he might wrap himself in it when he rose at night for prayer. Sometimes his wife found him on the ground weeping. When she complained, he would say, "O woman! I have the souls of three thousand to answer for, and I know not how it is with many of them." Possessed with such a responsibility to God, and to the people of his charge, how can any true minister of the cross withhold himself from an earnest devotion to his work of arousing souls, and pointing them to Christ? He feels his momentous responsibility during the
LET little children learn to pray, When first they learn to talk ; And let them learn to love the Lord, And in His statutes walk.
Think not you are too young to pray, You are not too young to die; Then in the cold and silent grave Your little form shall lie.
Oh! do not think He will not hear,
Because you are young and small; Without His knowledge, you have read, A sparrow cannot fall.
Then learn to call upon that God Whose power beyond the grave Can cast the soul in darkest night, Or in bright glory save.
The Fragment Basket.
Then, little children, won't you pray,
week, while preparing the beaten oil for the sanctuary. It covers him like a garment. It haunts him in the silent watches of the night. It absorbs his thoughts, and breathes out in every fervid utterance of his closet.
SCEPTICAL SAILOR CONVINCED.
A careless sailor, on going to sea, replied to his religious brother in words like these; "Tom, you talk a great deal about religion and Providence; and if I should be wrecked, and a ship were to heave in sight, and take me off, I suppose you would call it a merciful Providence. It's all very well; but I believe no such
thing. These things happen, like other things, by mere chance, and you call it Providence-that's all." He went upon his voyage, and the case he put became literally true: he was wrecked, and remained upon the wreck three days, when a ship appeared, and seeing the signal of his distress, came to his relief. He returned, and, in relating the case, said to his brother, "Oh! Tom, when that ship hove in sight, my words to you came in a moment into my mind like a bolt of thunder, of which I have never got rid; and now I think it no more than an act of common gratitude to give myself up to Him who pitied and saved me.'
The father happening to awake about the same time, looked at his child, and while looking, a lion came to the opposite side of the fire. The child, ignorant of its danger, was not afraid, but spoke to it, and sportingly threw live cinders at it, the lion growled, and approached nearer: the child seized a burning stick, and playfully thrust it into its mouth, and the lion scampered off as fast as it could run. The father witnessed all this, but was afraid to interfere, lest he, as well as his child, should have been torn to pieces by the ferocious animal.
Thus we, in life's sweet spring-time, Find flowers beneath our feet, Thronging, in wondrous beauty, Our loving looks to meet.
THE FOUNTAIN OF CONTENT.
The fountain of content must spring up in the mind; and he who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition, will waste his life in fruitless efforts, and multiply the griefs) which he purposes to remove.Johnson.
As the years roll on, the verdure
There will come another morning, When breezes, fresh and free, Will kiss the leaves returning
To the reft and naked tree; But we must wait the harvest, And the Angel-Reaper's time, Ere hills of summer beauty
For us shall rise sublime.
In the home to which we hasten,
Or dim the amaranth flower;
In strength without decay,
In the land of cloudless day.
THE connexion of this passage will be generally understood. The reader will know to what the bow in the cloud, and the cloud in which the bow is seen, relate. It will be remembered that in process of time man's sin had overcome God's forbearance on the earth, and as the result of this a deluge of waters was employed to sweep away our guilty race. Noah and his family found grace, and were preserved; and when the calamity was past, and these favoured ones came forth out of the ark—immediately a covenant was made with them and their seed, between God and the earth; and of that covenant, thus instituted, the rainbow was pointed to, as the token thereof. Many things may be said of this bow in the cloud. Its position-being placed in the heavens, whence the rains descended which drowned the world-its position made it suitable as a sign of what had happened to man.
And again, the time when the bow is usually seen may teach us something of the goodness and the goodwill of Him who appointed it. Commonly it is beheld in seasons of much rain, so that when the fears of men begin to be excited by the apprehension of Divine judgments, then appears for their relief this token of preservation and peace. Other thoughts are suggested by the colours of the rainbow. By the watery hues which are seen in it is represented the overwhelming rain which is past-never to return; and by the fiery appearance which it wears, is prefigured the final destruction of the world, when all shall be burned up, and when the elements shall melt with fervent heat. And last, but not least, may we not regard this bow in the cloud as a pleasing and lively type of Christ? For in Him-who is seen in the midst of the throne with a rainbow about His head-in Him all the promises of God are yea and amen; and whatever the evils which befall us, whatever the darkness that surrounds us, we have only to look on Him, and we shall be lightened, and our faces shall not be ashamed. "It shall come to pass (saith God) when I
THE BOW IN THE CLOUD; OR, THE JOY THAT
"And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud."-GEN. ix. 14.