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When some kind shepherd from his fold
Has lost a straying sheep, Through vales, o'er hills, he anxious roves,
And climbs the mountain's steep :
But 0 the joy! the transport sweet!
When he the wanderer finds;
And to his shoulders binds.
Homeward he hastes to tell his joys,
And make his bliss complete :
The joyful shepherd greet.
Yet how much greater is the joy
When but one sinner turns; When the poor wretch, with broken heart,
His sins and errors mourns!
Well-pleased the Father sees and hears
The conscious sinner weep; Jesus receives him in His arms
And owns him for His sheep.
Nor angels can their joys contain,
But kindle with new fire: “A wandering sheep's returned,” they sing,
And strike the sounding lyre.
The Fourth Sunday after Trinity.
O GOD, the protector of all that trust in Thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy; Increase and multiply upon us Thy mercy; that, Thou being our ruler and guide, we may 80 pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not the things eternal: Grant this, O heavenly Father, for Jesus Christs. sake our Lord. Amen.
" For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” -Rom. viii. 18.
world is evident, and it is vain to deny it. The apostle (Heb. xii.), while insisting on the advantages of
affliction as a means of discipline, admits that no chastisement for the present seems agreeable, but painful, however happy its results may prove. Loss of friends, loss of property, despite to our reputation fame and character, or the anguish of bodily sickness, are evils so distressing, that few are disposed to rate them too lightly; and, least of all, the immediate sufferers. Everyone is apt to consider his own burden the hardest to bear, and many would willingly compound with death itself, for a release from the severity of their trials. Let us hear the judgment of one who had seen both sides of the question. We are commonly anxious to catch the least intelligence which may reach us from the other side of the grave, and the revelations of a departed spirit on such a question would generally be regarded as decisive. The testimony of the text is that of one who experienced, on the one hand, as much of this world's misery as most of us are likely to encounter-stripes, fastings, imprisonments, persecutions, and all that we are accustomed to consider as filling up the measure of human suffering ; and, on the other hand, experienced the full foretaste of the glory which he describes : for, whether in the body or out of the body, “we know that he was caught up into the third heavens, and heard unspeakable words which it is not lawful for a man to utter.” This man, upon a deliberate calculation of both sides of the ques
tion, gives us the result of his reckoning, by which we are informed not merely that there is a balance of excess on the one side above the other that the distress is overmatched by the felicity, but that there exists no proportion or comparison between them ; "that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” So it will appear to our own enlightened eyes, when death is swallowed up in victory ; and so it should to our sober judgment now, were not flesh and blood too obtuse to receive it. We see all things now as through a magnifying glass, which swells the dimensions of what is really insignificant, and gives a comparative importance to things in themselves inconsiderable. But the enlightened eye of the saint will be astonished, when he looks back upon the wilderness, to see the objects which filled him with interest dwindled down, almost annihilated, to their real proportions. The loss of our worldly concerns will appear like the forfeiture of a child's plaything; the pains and privations of earth will be forgotten at His right hand, with whom there are pleasures for evermore; the loss of friends will be forgotten in the tears of joy with which they shall embrace us before the judgment-seat, and those tears shall disappear when wiped away by the loving hạnd of a Father, who shall wipe away tears from every eye.
The names which have been slandered before men shall be acknowledged before the angels in heaven ; and the
sons of God," when proclaimed before their peers, and heralded as the co-heirs of Chirst, will wonder at the importance they attached to the sneers of an ungodly world, and the disparagement of the comparison of their glory with a temporary eclipse among an evil and adulterous generation." This is the joy of our Lord, and these are the good things which God has laid up for those who love Him. Oh that, by the
. gracious influence of His spirit, they were now more completely realized by Faith! Thus we might rear sonably expect that the trials of this transient scene would sit lighter upon us, and we might be enabled to receive all the dispensations of Providence, not only with resignation, but with thanksgiving, knowing that the "sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”
“ Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”-LUKE yi. 42.
REPROOF is the duty of friendship and the office
of love. “Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thrine heart; thou shalt in anywise rebuke thy neigh