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did not turn away from him to do him good," but made “ all things to work together for his good.”
“ And I will make thy name great.". Perhaps no merely human name has been so widely_held in vêneration as that of Abraham: many Eastern nations, as well as the Jews, revere him as their progenitor ; and although differing in religion, vie with each other in doing honour to his memory. And, above all, he is distinguished in Scripture, by being called, " the friend of God."
“ Make thee a blessing.”-His determination to leave his country, had already been made a blessing to his father, as the means of inducing him to forsake his false gods, and to leave his idolatrous kindred. Lot was also spared in answer to Abram's intercession, Gen, xix. 29.
“ And in thee shall all families of the earth be: blessed."--The Apostle Paul explains these last words in his Epistle to the Galatians, where he says; (Gal. iii. 8.) that“ in them God preached the Gospel unto Abraham;" from which we learn that they were prophetic of Christ; and signify, that, in the seed of Abraham, ONE should come who should be a blessing to all nations, even the man Christ Jesus, of whom it is said, Ps. lxii. 17. “ His name shall endure forever, his name shall be continued as long : as the Sun, and men shall be blessed in Him.”
V.4, 5. This removal took place about three hundred and twenty years after the building of the tower of Babel, and we read in Heb. xi. 8. that it was " by faith that Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither be went."
Now how did Abraham's faith shew itself, in this instance? It showed itself in his giving up present advantages, for the sake of the future unseen blessings, promised to him by. God. The reason why so much is said about faith in Scripture, is because it is our faith that influences
our conduct. If Abraham had not believed that God would bestow the blessings He promised, he would have remained in Ur of the Chaldees; but he did believe it, so às, for the sake of it, to leave country, home, and kindred, and go he knew not whither, only knowing that God had called him to it, and would be with him. Abram's feelings were as acute as those of other men, but his faith enabled him to rise above them. Canaan was three hundred miles distant from Haran, and separated from it by great rivers, and a vast and perilous desert; and no doubt he felt as keenly as we should do, how absurd his undertaking must appear in the eyes of his idolatrous relations ; but, disregarding alike their persuasions and ridicule, and the dangers of a strange land, -upon the bare word of God, he went out, with those whose safety was more precious to him than his own, leaving all he knew and loved, for unknown friends, and untried scenes. And in the very leaving of our native country, there is something most painful. There are a thousand habitual pleasures connected with the scenes of our childhood, of which we are not even conscious till we have lost them. Unless you had tried it, you can scarcely conceive how the new climate, newanimals, new diseases, new customs, new food, strange countenances, and the strange language of a foreign country, press upon the
mind. How you look in vain for some fond familiar face, and long and listen for the well known sounds of your native language. But all this Abraham encountered, and he encountered it not on the favourable report of a fellow creature, or in expectation of any present advantage to himself, for we read in Acts vii. 5, that “God gave him none inheritance in it, no, not so much as to set his foot on, only He promised that He would give it to
* The writer of this, we know, speaks from experience. -EDITOR,
him for a possession, and to his seed after him," but he believed that God would be his portion, and “while he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.”.
“ Now whatsoever things were written aforetime, were written for our learning ;" and this history, of the calling of Abraham, among the rest. exhorted to walk in the steps of his faith. If you are now“ living without God in the world,” He calls upon you, to “ come out, and be separate.” Not actually and literally to leave your country, and kindred, and father's house: but to come out from your ungodly friends, in the spirit of your mind : like Abraham, to take God for your portion, and to live as a stranger and sojourner upon earth, having your affections set upon a better country, that is, a heavenly. And if you do this, He will be with you,
and bless you for ever.
T. B. P.
ON TRUTH. Thomas and Sarah Trueman were respectable cottagers who lived in the village of C in the north of England. They had been fellow-servants, many years, in the family of a farmer in that neighbourhood, and their good behaviour had so completely gained them the favour of their employer, that he and his wife (from the time they set up for themselves) had never ceased affording them every littie help that lay in their power,and shewing, by many kind offices, their approbation of their good conduct whilst under their roof. Often, when money was short, from some unexpected loss, or when times were somewhat hard with poor Thomas, did his former master help him out of his difficulties ; for, would he justly remark to his wife, “ Thomas has saved us many and many a pound, which an idle man would have wasted, or a dishonest one turned to his own account; and he shall never want for assistance so long as I have bread to eat or a shilling in my pocket; and then,
would Mrs. Halford say, "Sally was a careful hardworking girl as you'd wish to see ; I never found her gossiping with the flaunting girls in the village, nor spending the time she ought to devote to my business, in making up frills and finery for herself.” Thomas and Sally had, it is true, both enjoyed the great blessing of a good education, having been the children of honest, industrious, and religious parents, who had constantly endeavoured to instil into their minds steady principles of religion, and to impress upon them the necessity of conducting themselves in all the affairs of this world, as those whose hopes are firmly founded on the bright inheritance promised to the righteous, through the merits and intercession of their Redeemer, in a better. Was it surprising, then, that, in after life, their behaviour should bear the ample testimony it did to the truth of the Proverb,"train up a child in the way he should go, &c?"
But to go on with my story. Their Cottage was the neatest and prettiest in the village ; and, rich in the blessings of health and contentment, they envied not the larger possessions, or superior station, of some of their neighbours.
One child, a girl, was the only offspring of this humble pair, the object of their tenderest affection ; which was shewn, not by indulging her in every wayward humour, and caprice, but by early checking those inclinations to evil, which, if not constantly combated, “ grow with our growth, and strengthen with our strength;” and by teaching her, from the first dawn of reason, that the eye of God was always upon her, and to dread as the severest of punishments His displeasure, and the reproaches of her own heart. Sarah Trueman would have liked to have brought up her little girl without assistance; but, in her early days, the children of the poor had not the means of acquiring knowledge which they now possess, so that, though she was qualified to instruct her in needlework, (that essential branch of female knowledge in all situations) she was unable to teach her to read, and it was her earnest wish that her child should be capable of seeking information in the Sacred Volume, not merely for her own benefit, but also that of herself and her husband, who, (except what they acquired from the public service of the Church, which they regularly attended) had hitherto been entirely dependent, for the most important of all instruction, on the kindness of others. With this view, the child as soon as she was eight years old, was sent, for an hour or two every day, to the village school, where her general good conduct and obliging disposition, soon gained her the approbation
of her mistress and the love of her companions. But Jane's happiness was soon overcast by an unexpected stroke of affliction. Her father was attacked by the small-pox, which was quickly communicated to his wife; the disease, as is often the case when taken in the natural way, assumed suddenly an alarming character; and in the short space of three weeks, was poor Jane deprived of both her parents. She was herself preserved from infection by the precaution taken in her infancy of having her vaccinated; owing to this circumstance, she was enabled to have the comfort of attending constantly upon her parents during their illness, and the mournful gratification of receiving their blessings and their last advice.
As soon as the funeral rites were performed, she prepared to quit her late home, uncertain what her future destination might be. She was forlorn and distressed, (how, under her present circumstances, could it be otherwise) but not forsaken; for, who ever saw " the righteous forsaken, or his seed begging their bread ?” No sooner was her situation known, than the neighbours flocked from all quarters to offer good little Jane an asylum in their families. The offer of Mrs. Halford, the old and attached friend of her father and mother, was that which she felt most