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what had since become of him. Oh, let praise the Lord with the instruments them not allow the confessional to be in which David had made--(1 Chron. xxiii. troduced into this country under any pre- 5); and of so much importance was this text. It was Satan's strongest engine. part of the service of the temple esteemed, But it was a painful fact that the confes- that it was maintained day and nightsional was being introduced into English (1 Chron. ix. 33); the Levites being churches; and he prayed that God might divided into twenty-four courses for that defend us from the consequences.
purpose.-(1 Chron. xxv.) The arrangements of Solomon were on a scale of equal magnificence. His own songs, we
told, were one thousand and five. And it OUR SCOTTISH PSALMODY. is remarkable, that, according as the suc
cessors of David and Solomon did good or
evil ‘in the sight of the Lord,' so did the The whole of Scripture is full of exhor music of the temple revive or decline. tations to praise, and supplies us with a We find that the good kings, such as Jehomost interesting history of the power and shaphat, Hezekiah, and Josiah, restored progress of sacred music.
the singers, the sons of Asaph, to their The first sound heard on earth was the place, according to the commandment of voice of praise; when the corner-stone David; and the same is recorded of Ezra thereof was laid, "the morning stars sang and Nehemiah after the captivity. together, and all the sons of God shouted In the New Testament, the spiritual for joy. (Job xxxviii. 7.) And when the priesthood take up the song, not now conwork of redemption, for which this earth fined to 4000 Levites, but the duty of the was created, shall have been finished, and whole Church, who are a royal priesthood, the temple of God, of which our globe is a holy nation, a peculiar people, that they but the scaffolding, shall have been com- should show forth the praises of Him who pleted, the headstone thereof shall be hath called them out of darkness, into his brought forth with shoutings, singing, marvellous light.'-(1 Pet. ii. 9.) Our Grace, grace, unto it. (Zech. iv. 7.) great High Priest himself set us the ex
In tracing the history of music, we find ample, by singing a hymn with his disits employment in celebrating divine rites ciples, on the night in which he was becommon to every nation, from the rude trayed. In the writings of the apostles, instruments and wild yells of the savage, frequent allusions are made to the use of to the entrancing tones of the organ, and hymns among the early Christians. In sensuous harmonies of modern Italy: 1 Cor. xiv. 26, Paul refers to the practice The most ancient composition in sacred of singing hymns when the disciples met poetry extant, is the hymn of praise sung together. And in writing to the Colosby Moses and Miriam at the Red Sea. sians, he exhorts them to teach and adWe afterwards meet with the song of De- monish one another in psalms and hymns borah and Barak, and with Hannah's and spiritual songs, singing with grace in thanksgiving, when her heart rejoiced in their hearts. He elsewhere declares his the Lord, and her mouth was enlarged own resolution to sing with the spirit, and over her enemies. Throughout the history. the understanding also. of the Jews, we have various instances of In the writings of the Fathers, various the important place assigned to praise as allusions are made to the value of sacred a part of the worship of God; and several music. Augustine describes how by it incidents show that their music was not ‘unbelievers were won to receive the truth, confined to the celebration of great events, the common people captivated, and the nor to thanksgiving for special mercies. faithful found it a way of mutual consolaIt was used as a vehicle of prophetic ut- tion and exhortation, terance. (1 Sam. x, 5; 1 Chron. xxv. 1-7; Coming nearer our own day, we have 2 Kings iii. 15.) It was also specially ap- the example of the Reformers, who vigopointed by the Lord to be used in battle. rously set themselves to redeem music (2 Chron. xiii. 12; xx. 21, 22.) Sacred from the neglect into which it had fallen, music, however, evidently held a subor- and used it as a powerful auxiliary to dinate place among the Jews, until the enable them to accomplish their great time of David; he it was who first ele- work. No man held it in higher estimavated it to that position which it occupied |tion than Luther. "The souls of Luther in the temple service. No one can read and his contemporaries,' says D'Aubigné, his history, as it is recorded in the Book | 'elevated by faith to the most sublime of Kings and Chronicles, without being contemplations, roused to enthusiasm by struck with the extent and magnificence the dangers and struggles which incess of his arrangements for conducting the santly threatened the infant Church, inservice of praise in the sanctuary. Out spired by the poetry of the old, and the of 38,000 Levites, 4000 were set apart to hope of the New Testament, soon began
to pour out their feelings in religious Paul and Silas sang praises to cheer their songs, in which poetry and music joined, hearts in prison. Luther frequently emand blended their most heavenly accents, | ployed music as an encouragement to himand thus were heard, reviving in the six self and his friends. On his way to teenth century, the hymns which, in the Augsburg,' D’Aubigné relates, every first century, soothed the sufferings of the man was aware of the dangers which threatmartyrs. Many were the hymns composed, ened the Elector, and hence many in his and rapidly circulated among the people, | escort marched with downcast eyes and and greatly did they contribute to arouse sinking hearts. But Luther, full of faith, their slumbering minds.
revived the courage of his friends by comWarton, in his history of English posing and singing with his fine voice poetry, tells us, that to Calvin belongs the that beautiful hymn, since become so merit of having, with the advice of Luther, famous established the singing of psalms translated into the vernacular language, as a
*Eine vaste burg ist unser Gott.
Our God is a strong tower.' prominent part of public worship. The version of Psalms published by Clement
This hymn was sung during the Diet, not Marot, formed an appendix to the cate only in Augsburg, but in all the churches chism at Geneva, and became a character
of Saxony, and its energetic strains were istic mark, or badge of the Calvinistic wor
often seen to revive and inspirit the most ship and profession. Our own Knox, too, dejected minds. was equally zealous in the cause of psalm
The Moravians, in their account of their ody, and compiled a work, an edition of missions in Labrador, testify, how frewhich, published in 1615, exists to this quently they were wont to solace themday. So great was the zeal with which selves with music, when their hearts were the Reformers cultivated sacred music,
dispirited, and well-nigh cast down, by that psalms and hymns are termed by their want of success. Again, it is a source Burney 'the opera songs of the sixteenth whence may be drawn much enjoyment century. Roger Ascham, writing from and real delight, whether social or solitary. Augsburg in 1551, says, Three to four Hence the injunction of David, which his thousand singing in a church at one time
own experience abundantly confirmed : is but a trife. And in our own land,
Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good : psalmody was wont to be equally popular,
sing praises unto his name, for it is pleawhen the voice of praise was heard daily
sant." So also the command of Paul, ascending from every cottage.
where, condemning at the same time thé The importance of sacred music is mani so-called enjoyment of sensual indulgence, fested by the power which it exerts over he says, 'Be not drunk with wine, wherein the feelings, in all the varied and trying is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; relations of life. The expression of speaking unto yourselves in psalms and sacred music comprehends every emotion hymns and spiritual songs, singing and which can agitate the human breast, and making melody in your heart to the Lord.' must be felt rather than described. The -(Eph. v. 18, 19.) Further, its power subdued tones of awful adoration; the im over the soul tends to increase devotion, passioned fervour of desire; the humility From the constitution of the mind, its of prayer; the wailing of penitential sor emotions are strengthened by exercise and row; the glad tones of thanksgiving, and utterance; more especially is this the case, the loud chorus of praise—all these must when the mysterious power of sympathy have their own peculiar utterance, and acts upon it, as in the house of God. must be pervaded by a depth and solem Doubtless, the emotions to which the nity which shall distinguish them from music of the sanctuary gives rise, may in the meaner affections of humanity. Its many hearts only prove spurious feeling employment as a channel of rejoicing, is and natural sentiment. Still all who have probably at once the most ancient and felt the grace of God must be constrained universal use attached to it. There seems to acknowledge the power of sacred music, to exist, in the heart of every man, an as a divinely-appointed means of elevating instinctive desire to sing when he is glad ; the spirit. But the tendency to abuse al. and the Apostle James, in allusion to this luded to, calls for constant watchfulness. propensity, points to the outlet through | Lastly, sacred music is one of the most which the feelings ought to seek vent: Is efficient means of realizing heaven. The any merry ? let him sing psalms. Equally liveliest emblem of heaven that I know potent is this divine antidote for the sor- upon earth,' says Richard Baxter, ‘is when rowing heart. It calms the troubled soul, the people of God, in the deep sense of his cheers the drooping spirit, and sheds á excellency and bounty, from hearts aboundhalo round the gloomiest picture. The ing with love and joy, join together both evil spirit which haunted Saul was expelled in heart and voice, in the cheerful meloby David's skilful lyre. At midnight, I dious singing of his praises.'
Sacred music, however, possesses other possess in a high degree, that which Cicero advantages, apart from those more di- declared to be the secret of the true orator, rectly connected with personal edification. “the power of self-excitement." The By praise, men proclaim the goodness of feelings of this minister have, we doubt God, and testify to his loving-kindness not, been often experienced out of the puland tender mercies; thus others are per- pit as well as in it. When the heart is suaded to taste and see that God is good. | full, its emotions will seek vent by expresMy soul shall make her boast in the sion. Hence it may often be observed, Lord,' says David : the humble shall hear that the last psalm of a service is the most thereof and be glad?—(Ps. xxxiv. 2); lively, and is sung with more animation and Paul, reprobating the custom of sing than the others. On the evening of a ing in an unknown tongue, does so on the communion Sabbath, for instance, who has ground of its thereby failing to edify not felt his soul elevated, by the loud burst others. 'How shall he that occupieth the of room of the unlearned say Amen at thy *How bright these glorious spirits shine! giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth
Whence all their white array ?' not what thou sayest?'-(1 Cor. xiv. 16.) It cannot be asserted that sacred music is sung to the stirring tones of St Asaph?
And who can listen unmoved to the swell a direct instrument of conversion; but of three thousand voices, at the close of assuredly it may be, and often has been, used as a means of arresting the thought- ration and gratitude singing,
our General Assembly, with fervent adoless, and making the careless reflect.
Numerous instances are on record of Pray that Jerusalem may have the profligate being allured to the house
Peace and felicity?' of God through the agency of psalmody. Such instances show the power of psalmody, It is related of Dr Bray, that, when he when the heart and understanding find utfound the young men in his parish were
terance in grave sweet melody; and doubt in the habit of loitering about the church- less, if grace always fed the flame, its yard, or sauntering in the neighbouring results would be oftener more apparent. grounds, till the service was far advanced,
But it must be abundantly evident to he used to order a psalm to be sung before any one who has given the subject the prayers began, wbich had the effect of slightest consideration, that sacred music making them come flocking, into the is treated with neglect, and that the end church, and obliged them to be present for which psalmody was instituted as both at prayers and preaching; Lastly, part of our church service, has not been the music of the sanctuary is calculated to accomplished ; and we must be constrained cheer and enliven ministers of the gospel. to acknowledge, after listening to the voice Not long since,' says a minister, 'we wor
of praise in some of our Scottish congreshipped in two congregations on the same
gations, that there exists in sacred music Sabbath. In one, nearly the whole con
an element which has never been devegregation united in singing the psalms, loped-an element which is capable of which were selected as appropriate to the producing the most powerful effects, and
The effect upon our feelings was fitted to give to psalmody an importance electrical. We entered the pulpit, feeling which, at least in our day, it has failed to that to preach was a task which we were
reach. Were the hearts and voices of our but little prepared to perform. By the worshippers duly attuned, Presbyterial time the second psalm had been completed, singing might soon eclipse the heartless so exhilarating and elevating had been its choir, and rival, nay, far surpass, the effect upon us, that that feeling had passed thunders of the organ. away, and preaching became a pleasure. The agreeable services of the morning led us to anticipate those of the evening with pleasure. Psalms appropriate to the occa- THE IMPERFECTIONS OF OLD sion had been selected, the congregation
TESTAMENT SAINTS. was larger than the one in the morning, but when the singing commenced, it was The Sacred Oracles not only speak of confined to a few voices in a distant gal- | God as essentially spiritual, but of man lery. The effect was chilling in the ex- as really human. All the great men of treme. We dragged through the services, Scripture are, with one glorious excepand retired to spend a restless night, in tion, but imperfect and erring beings. thinking over the unsatisfactory scenes There are some who delight to exhibit the through which we had passed. We have faults of these imperfect saints, who dea profound admiration for the man who nounce their errors, and question the can preach a solemn and impressive ser- | propriety of recording such" offences as mon, after the singing of two or three cold theirs in a book like the Bible. But it and heartless tunes. He must certainly is better that scepticism should have its
PREFERENCES DISCOVER PRINCIPLES.
bones to snarl at than that superstition remaining in these good men, but we must should have had its idols to worship. admire the grace which purged, pruned, and The biography of Scripture is only what chastened them; and admit that "it was we expect to find in any correct history better they should enter into life maimed,"
and the book that purposes to and learn in their experience the force of lay bare the anatomy of the haman heart, the Scripture admonition, 'Let him that and to illastrate its disease and its remedy, thinketh he standeth, taketh heed lest he must have many pictures calculated to fall.'. The great moral of Scripture biodisgust the mock purity of the sentimen-graphy is that the best may fall, and the talist. As it was intended, not only to worst may rise : it stands like a beacon light teach the way of righteousness to man, but to warn the presumptuous and encourage to point out the way of salvation to sinners, the penitent; and is but another evidence we needed, not only a perfect copy of the that all Scripture is given by inspiration law, and one perfect example to illustrate of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for it, but many other examples to exhibit reproof, and for instruction in righteousto us the deceitfulness of the heart, the ness, that the man of God may be comdanger of temptation, the evil of sin, and the pletely furnished unto all good works.' necessity and nature of repentance. He who has never felt the need of repentance will not find much to interest or instruct him in the biography of Scripture; but he
CRUMBS FOR THE CHILDREN. who is convinced of sin, and alarmed for his safety, will turn to the experience of others, and as he reads of their transgressions, their repentance, and their pardon, At the early twilight of an autumn day, he also will seek mercy where they sought before the cheerful beauties of an open and found it. He has there the example stove, sat Esther and Hope. Esther's of some who 'obtained mercy, that in them long visit at her uncle's, with its varied Christ Jesus should show forth all long- and interesting incidents, still formed the suffering and patience, for a pattern to them topic of conversation. She had been abwho should hereafter believe in his name.'
sent from home more than a year, and a We often form a false estimate of the month only had witnessed her return. character of Old Testament saints, by John sat in a low chair, close by the fire, forgetting that as they had neither our a sore throat and a bad cold having conprivileges nor responsibilities, they ought fined him at home all day; and, after all, not to be judged by our light, but by the it was not a very severe confinement, inaslaw of their own times; and if there much as both John and Nat greatly dewere any amongst them whose privileges lighted in the society of their sisters. Mr were so great that the common rule is no Hunter was still down in town, while Mrs standard for them, still we would require Hunter and Lizzie were on their way home. to know more about some things of which Here is an invitation to the Parkers' we are now ignorant, before we can be great party, for Thursday evening,' spake competent to give a right judgment on Hope, who had just answered a summons their character and experience.
We at the door. know that some of them were honoured to "To their great party! O, yes; why,
I reveal much of the will of God, and to be shall certainly go; shall you not, Hope ?? instrumental in forwarding his work on cried Esther, with great animation. the earth; but we do not know the influ- ‘But our missionary sewing-meeting is ence which such distinguished privileges, to-morrow night,' said Hope. on the pride of the human heart, nor 'O, we must go to the Parkers'; they their tendency to make men forget the will expect us, by all means.' necessity of a constant dependence on the 'Why must, Esther? We can say we power of their heavenly Father; and there are engaged—our meeting is prior and were few who, like Paul, had the privilege more important than the party, of a sinless infirmity, to keep them from sure we should not be missed in one of being 'exalted above measure.' We know their crowded routs. So urged Hope. that they all needed salvation, but we do ‘O, we ought to go. Everybody will be not know how far they went astray before there-it will look so singular for us to be they were afflicted, nor what kind of disci- absent. Yes, only for once, at any rate.' pline was best, adapted to sanctify their Thus argued Esther; and with precisely natures, and keep them near to God. We the same arguments does every pleasureknow that they were forgiven much, and seeker urge obedience to his inclination. that they loved much ; but we do not know Hope was not convinced. Affection whishow far the sense of forgiveness inflamed pered, "Go with your sister-it will please the ardour of their love. We may regret her. 'Duty asked, with august simplicity, to discover the evidence of depravity still l'Is it righi ??
Dear Esther,' began Hope, hesitatingly, 'I was only thinking,' answered John, 'I, a long while since, resolved never to nervously kicking his foot. give up a missionary-meeting, or any reli- Both Hope and Esther felt uncomfortgious duty, unless there was a very, very able, but from very different causes. good reason for it.'
A day passed away. "Would father or mother object to our 'I cannot decline now, I am sure, it will going, Hope ?" asked Esther.
look so,' repeated Esther to herself again 'Not if we wish it; but is it quite right?' and again. Then she spoke about the she queried, earnestly,
visit as a thing of course, and busied her. Only for once. We need not be in the self in the necessary preparation. habit of it, you know. Say Yes, this time, After tea on Thursday evening, the sisat least'-and Esther was conscious of ters hastened to their chambers; Hope's wishing to have the affair decided before toilet was soon made. In her blue frock, the arrival of her parents.
and plain white collar, she came to offer "Then I will say “Yes” for you, assistance to Esther, who was in vain Esther," said the sister, slowly disappear- striving to arrange some ornaments about ing at the parlour door.
her hair. Yes,' echoed from within the parlour 'I cannot for the life of me fix them to and Nay for me,' added Hope, without. my taste,' cried Esther, pettishly. Hope 'I formed my resolution in a clear light, succeeding no better, she angrily cast and I will abide by it.'
them aside. A thoughtful pause succeeded Hope's 'I must go now, dear Esther,' said the return to her chair. The eyes of the youngest, I wish we were going the three were bent upon the ever-varying same way: brightness of the coals; though the bright 'Go with me, then,' exclaimed the sister, coals evidently fashioned no part of their with visible asperity. thoughts.
Hope shook her head and sped down By-and-by the family circle gathered in; stairs; the entry door soon closed after toast and tea smoked upon the supper- her retreating footsteps. table; but though the whole aspect of The young ladies of the missionarythings looked as cheerful as could be, no- meeting had already assembled in Mrs body seemed disposed to conversation. Carpenter's little back sitting-room, into
Father, at length commenced John, which Hope Hunter was cordially welwho was sipping his gruel from his low comed by Fanny Carpenter. 'I knew you seat by the fire, when there is a party would not leave us,' she exclaimed, graspand a prayer-meeting both on the same ing her hand. night, which ought religious people to go Oh, no, no,' was the emphatic reply. to?
Behold this happy circle! One-twoWhich do you think, my son ?? asked three—there are eight. They gather about the father,
a large table, covered with lamps and a John blushed, and hesitated, and nestled green cloth-various kinds of work, in his chair. He found it was a delicate finished, half completed, just begun, are and unexpected point which he was called spread out. There is brilliant worsted work, upon to decide.
there a comfortable pair of woollen socks, Which, my son ? can you not tell?" and the prettiest imaginable cap. Some again asked the father.
knit, some sew, some embroider-how busy I think I know,' muttered John. are they! What diligence in every mo
'Well, sir, your opinion. I dare say it tion! They_look up, and question, and will coincide with my own,' said Mr talk. Then Fanny Carpenter reads. They Hunter, enconragingly.
seem occupied with the contemplation of 'Why, I should think, to the prayer- great realities; a thoughtful seriousness is meeting, and he stole á regretful and on every face-hearts are warmed and sorry glance towards his eldest sister hands fly faster. Evening advances—one
Why so, my son ?' Mr Hunter was and another put aside their work; a small famous for a reason, much to his children's round box is in the middle of the tableperplexity sometimes.
wherefore is it? See the money drop in! * Because God's cause is greater than Hope, Fanny, Sarah, Anne, are drawing any body's else; and the missionary cause near it! Half-crowns, crowns, shillingsis God's, my Sabbath-school teacher says,'| how the silver clinks! Bank bills are answered John, looking down.
there too_the fruit of labour, of pains* Very good, John; and our attachment taking, of resolute self-denial. Sweet to it should be strong enough to lead us to voices now float in music—a hymn is sung prefer its interests upon all occasions, they pause and kneel in prayer; a timid when other interests clash with it. In à voice breaks the stilluess in the language word, we ought to be faithful to it. But of earnest, yet subdued supplication. Then what suggested the question, my son ? they arise to go away. Will any one say,