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by wealth or station to eminence, too often grow unmindful of their parents, and the guardians of their earlier days! We all owe debts of gratitude to our parents which no attention or kindness, however great, can ever fully repay.
We notice secondly, the unbounded respect she always paid to king Ahasuerus; which teaches at the same time our obligations to those in authority over us, and the duty of the wife to her husband. Although born of Jewish parents, and trained according to Jewish manners and customs; yet, whenever tested, we find her manifesting a proper spirit of regard to Persian laws and customs, with which she came into such intimate contact as Queen. In this she betrays that virtue which Paul commends, when he exhorts us to “be subject to the higher powers,” or “the powers that be,” and which Christ himself gave evidence to, when He said, "render unto Cæsar the things which are Cæsar's.”
In the third and last place, we cannot but be impressed with the disposition she manifested to serve the Jewish people; for, if need be, she was willing to lay down her life in order to save them from their threatened doom. And what better test can we possibly have of a true friend, a noble heart, and of a true christian spirit, as exemplified by Christ himself, than that one should be willing to lay down his life for his fellow men?
Here, then, we leave our subject—though but generally considered and hastily glanced at—with a parting request of the readers of the “Guardian” to give a careful perusal, in connection with these few reflections to the whole Book of Esther, wherein you will find a more minute and extended life of the “Orphan Queen,” in whom, we hope you have, by this time, become somewhat interested. It is certainly a history full of the deepest interest and of the most wholesome instruction.
THE ARROW AND THE SONG.
I sbot an arrow into the air,
LEARN TO ECONOMISE. Young men in our town and cities are constantly in danger of being too lavish in their expenditures. The temptations in this direction are numerous and often very difficult to resist. They are addressed to every sense, and he who has money on hand may permit it to escape from him in the pursuit of momentary pleasures, before he is aware of the inroads which have been made upon
Let every one, therefore, be on his guard against the impositions which the world is sure to practice upon him if he be not careful. He may be as effectually plundered by listening to every silly feeling or appetite, that craves for gratification, as when he falls in with the pick-pocket or the highwayman. He receives no equivalent for what he expends, and he is moreover destined to be the prey of the afterthought, that the deception has been carried on all along with his own free consent. Our funds, whether they are the product of our own industry, or the gifts of affectionate friends, are not properly our own, and we have no more right to misuse them than any other gift we receive from a bountiful Providence. If they have been accumulated by our own efforts, then how insane it is to waste them in an hour, when they may have cost us weeks and months of wearisome toil in gaining them ; if they have been placed in our hands by our parents or guardians, we commit à fraud upon them, when we suffer them to be employed upon objects which they would condemn, and the fraud becomes only so much the more glaring, when it is remembered that it is practiced upon those whom we should be the last to deceive, and who, it may be, would be the last to suspect any deception on our part. Everything that comes into our possession as patrimony, ought to be held as something sacred, which we are bound to respect, as we respect those from whom it was received.
Instead of contracting an evil habit of this kind, every young man should learn to husband his resources, and to practice lessons of economy. His future prosperity, his success in life, his happiness and his usefulness in the world, will depend very much upon the habit he forms in youth of living within his means.
The good financier of his own funds, will be trusted by the community in any enterprize in which he may embark, and the public will be willing to commit to his charge large and important interests; for it is felt, that he who honestly and conscientiously guards the springs of his own activity will also be capable of protecting the property of others when placed in his hands. To be a good financier, however, is not to be learned in a day or an hour, or at some indefinite period in the future. It requires the exercise of moral courage often times of the highest character, and is a point of practical wisdom, that is to be gained only by time and perseverance. The sooner, therefore, the lesson is learned, the better, and the more likely is the individual to retain for life the habits acquired in learning it. When habits of prodigality are once formed, the difficulty increases a hundred fold in magnitude. To retrench and learn to deny oneself under such circumstances, demands the fortitude that is necessary to pluck out a right eye, or to cut off a right hand, for the sake of some greater good. The best time that could be presented for the formation of habits of economy is youth. Character has not as yet been fully formed, or if formed, it is susceptible of improvement and change for the better. The young man is learning a trade, or preparing himself for some profession. All his activity has reference to the future. Why then, whilst he is making his preparation for the active duties of life, should he not pay some special attention to this subject, that when he is thrown upon the arena of life, and required to make his fortune by his own efforts, he may be prepared to take his place among others with the ability to take care of himself and of his own ? Penuriousness ought to be avoided, for the avaricious man has no more claims upon the respect of others than the spendthift. The love of getting and keeping may very easily grow into a passion, when the individual falls under the worst species of thraldom. But the man is not penurious, who sedulously watches the manner in which he expends every penny, refuses to give it up unless he feels persuaded that he has obtained a fair equivalent. The practice of keeping a neat and accurate account of receipts and expenditures cannot be too highly recommended to every young man. Nothing will be found to contribute more to the formation of a good habit than this. It will give him an opportunity to see where and how his funds have been expended, and if at proper seasons, say at the end of a week, month or year, a review is made, he may know precisely how far he has failed, and how far he needs to be corrected. It is presumable, that the severest reprimand which could be inflicted upon the prodigal, would be the exhibition of his expenditures in detail. The practice to which we have referred may be irksome at first, yet it will soon be settled down into a fixed habit, which will render the duty an easy as well as a pleasant one. If, moreover, in addition to such a habit of calling himself to account for the manner he uses his money, an individual endeavors to feel at all times, that he is responsible to his Maker, not only for every word he speaks, but also for every penny he spends, he will be able realize when in own case work the idea of the truly honest man, who is said to be the noblest of God.
THE MARYS. There is scarcely another part of Gospel History so intricate as that pertaining to the different Marys, mentioned in connection with the Saviour's life. It is difficult to ascertain exactly how many Marys there were, and how to distinguish them clearly from each other as they are from time to time referred to. We will briefly designate them:
1. Mary, the wife of Joseph. Math 1. 16, Luke 1. 27. She was the Mother of Jesus. Math 13. 55, Mark 6. 3, Acts 1. 14. She stood at the cross when our Saviour died. John 19. 25. After his death she continued among the disciples. Acts 1. 14. John took her to his own home at Jerusalem. John 19. 27. It is said that she died in the fifth year of the reign
the Emperor Claudius; also that she gave birth to our Saviour in her fifteenth year—that she dwelt eleven years in the house of John, and died in the fifty-ninth year of her age.
2. Mary, the mother of James the less, and Joses. Math 27. 56, Mark 15. 40, 47: 16. 1, Luke 24. 10. She is called the wife of Cleophas. John 19. 25. She was a sister to the Mother of Jesus. John 19. 25.
3. MARY MAGDLENE. Out of her Jesus cast seven devils. Mark 16. 9. After this she joined the followers of Christ. Math. 27. 56, and 61. 28. 1. Mark 15. 47. : 16. 1. Luke 24. 10, John 19. 25. Tradition says that she went afterwards to Rome to accuse Pilate before the Emperor for condemning Jesus—that, still later, she published the gospel in Spain, and that she there established an asylum or convent for sinful females, and labored for their reformation.
4. Mary, the sister of Lazarus and Martha. Jobn, chapter 11 and 12. She also anointed the Saviour's feet with ointment, and wiped them with her hair. John 11. 2. It is now however supposed that this anointing is not the same as that mentioned in Luke 7. 36.
5. Mary, the mother of John, whose surname was Mark. Acts 12. 12. Of this Mary nothing further is recorded in sacred history. That she was pious is evident from the fact that it said many were gathered together at her house praying.
THE SONG OF STEAM.*
Harness me down with your iron bands;
Be sure of your curb and rein,
As the tempest scorns a chain.
For many a countless hour,
And the pride of human power.
When I saw an army upon the land,
A navy upon the seas,
Or waiting the wayward breeze;
With the toil which he daily bore,
Or tugg'd at the weary oar;
The fligbt of the carrier dove,
Or the lines of impatient love;
As these were outstripp'd afar,
Or chain'd to the flying car.
Ha! ha! ha! they found me at last;
They invited me forth at length,
And laugh'd in my iron strength.
On the earth and ocean wide,
Nor wait for wind or tide.
Hurra! hurra! the waters o'er
The mountains steep decline;
The world, the world is mine!
Or those where his beams decline,
Or the orient floods divine.