صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

neglecting to use the light, the feast, the riches, so freely placed within my reach?

LOST TIME. It is a solemn inquiry; because the Lord will not pass over the neglect of one, while It is a hackneyed subject, but one of he marks the diligence of another, in re- such growing importance in the history of spect of his great gift.

each individual, that too much stress And what a plea is here for increased can hardly be laid on it. The simple fact zeal in circulating this blessed book! A of a past hour being totally irrecoverable, few pence in the purchase, a little thought would alone stamp it with awful interest; and exertion in the giving of a Bible, may but when to this is added the equally cerbring life to the dead in a whole family--- tain truth that it has not passed unmarked a whole district. Ask the poor, toil-worn or unrecorded by the Most High, and that labourer, who has found in those pages what is our loss is also our theft, a robbery wine and milk without money and without committed against Him,—we may well price, what he will sell them for? Ask mourn the past, and watch unto prayer for the desolate widow, who there has found a right use of the future. a heavenly husband--the sorrowing mo Time-losers form a very considerable ther, who has learned there the way by majority in the upper classes of society, which she may surely go at last to the and no small proportion even among those child that cannot return to her---the trans-on whose daily labour their daily bread gressor, who had long felt bis sins to be a depends. The former, by late rising, by burden too heavy for him to bear, and lingering at the toilet and over the breakwho has received in the Gospel the rest fast and dinner-table, squander so many which Christ alone can give to the weary hours, that they may almost be said not and heavy-laden,---ask these the same to live out half their days, such inaction question, and then judge what you are being unworthy of the name of life. When withholding from their companions, in sor to this is added the frivolous employments row, by neglecting to give, yea, to force of what are termed morning calls, the opon them, the blessing which as yet they needless lounging in shops, and the utterly know not, or value not. Recently, I was useless occupation of writing letters full reproved by my own earnestness in per- of gossip and egotism, it is fearful to calsuading a person who had received some culate the amount of the robbery. TI. trifling hurt, to apply a remedy, the effi- humbler sort of people appear, on a comcacy of which I greatly confided in. The parison with these, to pass a life of incesthought would occur, « This poor creature sant labour ; but they too are chargeable has a far deeper and more dangerous with much sinful waste of what they are wound, which admits but of one cure; I equally bound to improve, though haphave the recipe, I know its infallible pily exempt from many of the temptations power; and why do I not with equal, or that assail others. Are we, then, to stiggreater importunity, press its application matise as criminal the occasional relaxahere ?" O that we could number our sins tion of mind and body, that experience of omission, remembering that “to him shows is necessary to the health of both ? that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, By no means: we do wrong when negto him it is sin.” A multitude of these lecting to ensure it to ourselves, and to transgressions are not even acknowledged, those under our authority, or within our infar less repented of, so much is the heart | Auence. Rest and recreation too are hardened and the conscience seared among the blessings provided for us, and through neglect of that command so re- which we have no right to reject. Unbepeatedly, so solemnly enforced, “Watch.” lief alone can lead us to sacrifice them to How can we suffer one poor fellow-sinner an over-anxious care for the morrow's to lock the treasure which would enrich us supply; and I do not consider the time so in the giving, as well as him in the receiv- spent as being lost, any more than the ing of it?

moments which the mechanic sets apart for sharpening the tools necessary to his especial work, are lost to him. Deduct from all unemployed hours a fair propor

tion for such rest and refreshment, and ac- sus,” in a three-fold light, is the remedy. count only for the remainder,-it will look to him as an example; watch his prove a formidable arrear.

course when on earth, going about doing “I am always employed in one way or good; speaking words of heavenly truth, another," is the remark frequently heard warning, invitation, consolation, to all from busy idlers, who fancy that, so long around; finding it meat and drink to do as their bodies are not stretched on a the will of his Father. Look to him as couch, or their hands folded before them, able to supply all your need, to overcome they may be said to be up and doing. your besetting sin, to strengthen and But what is it to be employed ? Johnson cheer you in the struggling race. Look defines the word “business," object of la- to him as the end and object of that race; bour. We have, therefore, only to in- as the great arbiter, holding forth the quire, what is men's business in the crown of life, not as a reward for the vicworld? what is the object pointed out to tor's exertion, but as the free gift of his them as most worthy to be laboured for? own grace, the purchase of his merit, the If they be of the Israel of God, the answer token of a love for which the devotion of is given by him, “This people have I every energy, feeling, word, and thought formed for myself, that they may show forth to his service, is so poor and mean an acmy praise.” If they be not of that Israel, knowledgment, that the same mercy O how awfully startling is the cry of every which impels him to confer the boon, can squandered hour while they linger un- alone induce a reception of our praiseful mindful of the thrilling call, “ Escape for thanksgivings. thy life ; flee to the mountain!” That is lost time in which the follower of Christ does nothing to glorify his Master; and THE CANADIAN LAKE. that is lost time, involving a lost eternity too, wherein the soul that has not yet During a very severe winter in British found peace through the blood of the North America, I was much delighted to cross, does nothing towards seeking and trace all the splendid phenomena of frost finding it. That the angels of God take and thaw. The intensity of the first was a lively interest in the concerns of our inconceivable by any who have not expeworld, is unequivocally shown in Scrip-rienced it; consequently a description ture; and often do I think with what won- would, to some readers, be incredible. der and indignation these heavenly crea- The beauty and magnificence displayed in tures, who, for ages that we cannot num- many instances through the operation of ber, have been serving the Lord day and the latter, were captivating. On one ocnight, with an eternity of such joyous casion, I was watching the struggle beservice still before them, must look on tween a full volume of water flowing in man. Limited, at the ulmost stretch of from the sea, through the channel of a nohis mortal existence, to a few fleeting ble river, and the blocks of ice that, years, to work out his own salvation, and though broken, still disputed the passage; to glorify God, who works in him both to and tracing the process by which, as I will and to do, man, who might be ex- knew, the grand rivers of that region were pected to number his moments as a miser cleared of their obstructions, I called to numbers his golden pieces when com- mind a small, beautiful lake, embosomed pelled to deal them out, will fling away in the woods a few miles from my dwellhours, days, months, years, as though he ing, and so completely land-locked, that it too had an eternity in possession, with no was impossible for the broken ice to find object but to gratify his own capricious an outlet. I also knew the depth and sowill. Surely these two words, lost time, lidity of the congealed mass, and that it will be found engraven on the gates of must require a length of time to dissolve hell.

such a body where woods and hills overWhat is the remedy? For the past, shadowed it from the sun's ray. Mentionnone, save in the cleansing stream of a ing this difficulty to a friend, he gave me Saviour's blood, washing out the sin. For the following solution :the present and future, “looking unto Je “ The lake of which you speak, and

others like it, are frozen more deeply and to despondency, the offspring of unbelief, firmly than you suppose ; and if no me when a thought of the Canadian lake has thod of removing the ice, except by dis- revived my confidence, and enabled me to persion or solution, had been provided, the cast anew all my care upon Him, who has dwellers in their vicinity would be in a given me proofs, as unnumbered as the pitiable plight. But a most extraordinary sands, that he careth for me. Almighty phenomenon, such as you would never to deliver and to save, there is no restraint imagine, is connected with the subject, with him; but, without causing events to and I will endeavour to describe it. As diverge from the wonted calm and orderly the season advances for setting the waters course of his providential government, be free, the surface of the frozen lake is ob- puts aside whatsoever menaces the secuserved to become porous; and this increa- rity of his people'; forcing them to acses, until it almost resembles a honey- knowledge that glorious proclamation of comb. Some indications are then per- his name and attribute, “I am the Lord: ceived round the edges, so well understood I change not." by the surrounding people, that they can And if in the temporary difficulties of calculate with tolerable exactness when this life, how much more strikingly does the expected event will take place, and the type apply to that which is of eternal many assemble to witness the singular moment! Tied and bound in the chain spectacle. It usually occurs in a bright of its sins, the soul lies pressed under that day, when the sun is high. With a ponderous burden; no way of deliverance mighty crash, the ice at once separates open, no hope of casting off the frozen from the banks to which it had adhered; fetter. The sun may shine on all besides, the water bubbles up through thousands and all other things may fill their sphere and thousands of the little apertures that of usefulness; but the spirit, conscious of I have described; and the ponderous its own hopeless imprisonment, can neimass, thus broken from its hold and over-ther itself rejoice in the light of heaven, whelmed, sinks, with a sound resembling nor minister refreshment to those around. no other that I ever heard, to the bed of "Who shall deliver me from the body of the lake.

this death ?” is a query that could never “It is a moment of great joy to thc be answered, had not the Lord provided spectators, who have suffered many in- a way inconceivably wonderful, perfect, conveniences from the lengthened frost; and sure. He speaks the word, and the and the blue waters, dancing freely in the setter falls: the dark and heavy burden sunshine, seem to participate in their de- of sins is "cast into the depths of the sea,” light. You may imagine what a change no more to be seen or remembered but in passes over the face of the country; bird connexion with the stupendous deliverand beast hastening to quaff the tide, ance wrought. The freed spirit swells while the Indian prepares to launch his and sparkles in the gladsomeness of uncanoe, and the hunter exchanges his clouded day; and hastens to glorify the weary circuit for a light paddle across God of its salvation, by communicating to the lake. I have stood for an entire day others, as a good steward, the manifold enjoying the scene, -not one of the least gists received from him,—this its present wonderful in this land of wintry wonders.” and never-failing theme of gratitude and

Had circumstances allowed it, I should confidence: “Is there any thing too hard have been found among the watchers for for the Lord ?” this enfranchisement of the waters; but I was disappointed. The description, however, made an impression on my mind

THE CARDINAL. that I could not afford to lose. Obstructions have often been thrown across my There lately came into my possession path, as insurmountable by any power of a very fine bronze medal, of exquisite mine as the deep, thick, solid body of ice workmanship, bearing on its obverse the was unremoveable by human hand; and bust, en profile, of a man of noble lineaI have looked around, and seeing no way ments, robed, with the tonsure, and, susopen, have been on the point of yielding | pended from his neck, a crucifix. The



legend runs thus: HEN . IX. Mag. Brit. Protestant bishops were prisoners in the FR . ET. HIB. REX . FID . DEF.CARD. EP. Tower of London, for daring to be true

The reverse is singularly beau- to their first and highest duty; so beautiful. A female figure appears supporting tifully expressed by their spokesman, the a losty cross: in her right hand is a book, venerable Archbishop Sancroft: “We at her feet a lion couchant; while care are bound to fear God and honour the lessly scattered around lie a royal crown, king; we desire to do both; we will a cardinal's hat, and the insignia of vari- honour you; we must fear God.” In ous orders. In the distance is seen the 1788 is chronicled by this singular medal, city of Rome, with St. Peter's rising the infatuation by which the last of his majestically above the mass of buildings. direct line became a tonsured ecclesiastic, On this side the legend is: NON . DE- voluntarily incurring the prohibition to SIDERIIS . HOMINUM . SED . VOLUNTATE . perpetuate, in legal descent, that royal

At the base is recorded the impres- and renowned family. sively instructive date, An. MDCCLXXXVIII.

God hath laid in Zion a chief cornerIt is needless to add, that this medal com- stone, a sure foundation, expressly dememorates him who was called the Car- claring that whosoever should fall on that dinal Duke of York, and who here stone must be broken. The Stuarts fell assumes the regal title of England,—the on it; and they are broken, and dispersed, great-grandson of James II.

and blotted out from the regal tables of In contemplating this medal, it is difficult to Europe. Through unbelief, they atarrest one among the multitude of thoughts tempted to supersede that divine foundathat rush in a rapid current through my tion-disclaiming Christ as the rock, and mind; but the date is, however, the most putting in his stead a sinful mortal, and striking particular, inasmuch as it marks the assuming to build, not on Peter's Lord, revolution of a perfect century from the pe- but on Peter himself, or rather on the riod of the last open attempt to overthrow phantom of a darkened understanding, the Protestant religion in England; and invested with Peter's name. Not content declares, more emphatically than words with personally apostatising from the could do, the righteous retribution of the faith, James II. sought to involve a Most High. It is impossible to avoid an mighty empire in his sin, drawing the immediate recurrence to 1688, the year of sword of persecution on such as resisted England's extremest peril, and most the endeavour; and here I see the poor providential deliverance-the year when memorial of his descendant given over to James, baffled in his desperate enterprise the strong delusion which he and his of prostrating our country once more be- fathers loved, and finally immolating, in neath the footstool of the papal antichrist, his own person, the race of Stuart on the abdicated the throne. The consequence altar of their false faith. of his attempt was, to use the powerful In no instance since the blessed and glolanguage of Dr. Croly, that the princely rious Reformation has a leaning towards race of Stuart were cast out, “ they and popery, on the part of England's rulers, their dynasty, for ever: that proud line escaped some open mark of the Lord's of kings was destined to wither down into righteous displeasure. Does not this oba monk, and that monk living on the alms ject speak to us, as a Protestant nation, in of England, a stipendiary, and an exile.” the language formerly addressed to the

That monk is before me; and I cannot, Jews: “Behold, therefore, the goodness without deep sorrow of heart, contemplate and severity of God: on them which fell, the effigies of the unhappy prince. His severity ; but towards thee goodness, if great-grandsire, in the pride of power, thou continue in his goodness: otherwise intoxicated by the contents of the golden thou also shalt be cut off.” An humcup with which the mother of harlots is ble and obscure individual cannot, indeed, represented as making drunk the kings of influence the acts of public government; the earth, raised a sacrilegious hand but have I no personal interest in the matagainst those faithful bishops of our ter--no individual duty to perform ? I church whom the Lord raised up to de-have, and so have you, whosoever you fend his heritage. In 1688, the seven may be perusing this page, within the con



fines of free and happy England. We low and around, it spreads on every side, tread the soil over which once ruled and and the cry of Christian alarm is met by triumphed, in unlimited dominion, the the scoff of hoodwinked liberalism, laugh"man of sin,” the “ antichrist,” by whom ing to scorn the peril which it has incapathe blood of the saints and martyrs of citated itse! from descrying. O that the Jesus was shed, and beneath whose soul- Lord may be gracious unto his land, and destroying yoke we, even we, should at pity his people! They who can do nothis moment be bowed in helpless and thing more, may surely utter that prayer: hopeless thraldom, only for the sovereign but more may be done. The duty of each mercy of the Lord, in working for us a de- individual is, first to inform himself on this liverance that we could never have subject

, and then to deliver the warning achieved. Nations are composed of indi- wheresoever his voice or pen can reach. viduals; and in summing up the amount In the domestic circle, and throughout the of national guilt, each one is separately range of private correspondence, all may regarded with a view both to present and do this. When the cholera invaded our future retribution. Sinning as a nation, shores, none hesitated to caution his we must as a nation suffer here; because neighbour, or to recommend a preventive God will not be mocked, but will openly remedy, if he knew of such. Protestants recompense, in the sight of the world, the of England ! in your Bibles you will learn indignity cast on his holy name. But the nature of the poison, and find its only there is a beautiful and most striking pas- antidote ; while the history of your counsage in the ninth chapter of Ezekiel, which try, particularly those pages of it which cannot be too closely or too practically are written in flames and blood, will furstudied in these times---times of fearful de- nish an awful application of the subject to parture from the straight line of Protestant yourselves and to your children. The duty---times marked by the daily advances storm is rising--the vessel is beginning to of popery in the church, in the senate, and reel under it. “ What meanest thou, O in other high places of the land; while be- I sleeper ? arise, call upon thy God!"


« السابقةمتابعة »