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generosity and public spirit were roused within him by the cry as if from the very depths of his heart, “Where, now, are your Hengists and your Horsas? Where are those leaders who should be leading their people to useful employments, to distant countries, where are they? Preserving their game!” Before his withering indignation all false pretensions, all excuses for worthless idleness and selfish luxury, fell away. The word which he invented to describe them has sunk, perhaps, into cant and hollowness; but it had a truth when first he uttered it. Those falsities were shams, and they who practised them were guilty of the sin which the Bible, in scathing scorn, calls hypocrisy.
And whence came this earnestness ? Deep down in the bottom of his soul it springs from his firm conviction that there was a higher, a better world than that visible to our outward senses. All, whether called saints, in the middle ages, or Puritans, in the seventeenth century, or what you like in our own day, he revered them, with all their eccentricities, as bright and learned examples of those who "sacrificed their lives to their higher natures, their worser to their better parts. In addressirg the students of Edinburgh, he bade them remember that the deep recognition of the eternal justice of heaven, and the unfailing punishment of crimes against the law of God, is at the origin and foundation of all
the histories of nations. No nation which did not contemplate this wonderful universe with an awe-stricken and reverential belief that there was a great unknown, omnipotent, allwise, and all-just Being superintending all men and all interests in it, no nation ever came to very much, nor did any man either, who forgot that. If a man forgot that, he forgot the most important part of his mission in the world. So he spoke, and the ground of his hope for Europe of his hope, we may say, against hope was that, after all, in any commonwealth where the Christian religion exists, nay, in any commonwealth where it has once existed, public or private virtue, the basis of all good, never can become extinct; but in every new age, and even from the deepest decline, there is a chance, and, in the course of ages, the certainty, of renovation. The divine depths of sorrow, the sanctuary of sorrow, the life and death of the divine Man, were, to him, Christianity. We stand, as it were, beside him whilst the grave has not yet closed over those flashing eyes, over those granite features, over that weird form on which we have so often looked, whilst the silence of death has fallen on that house which was once so frequented and so honored. We call up memories which occurred to ourselves. One such, in the far past, may, perchance, come with peculiar force to those whose work is appointed in this place. Many years ago,
whilst I belonged to another cathedral, I met him in St. James' Park, and walked with him to his own house. It was during the Crimean war; and after hearing him denounce, with his vigorous and, perhaps, exaggerated earnestness, the chaos and confusion into which our administration had fallen, and the doubt and distrast which pervaded all classes at the time, I ventured to ask him, “What, under the circumstances, is your advice to a canon of an English cathedral ?” He grimly laughed at my question. He paused for a moment and then answered, in homely and well-known words; but which were, as it happened, especially fitted to situations like that in which he was asked to give his counsel—“Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might." That is, no doubt, the lesson he leaves to each one of us in this place, and also to this weary world—the world of which he felt the weariness as age and infirmity grew upon him—the lesson which, in his more active days, he practised to the very letter. He is at rest, he is at rest; delivered from that burden of the flesh against which he chafed and fretted: he is at rest! In his own words, “Babylon, with its deathening inanity, rages on to the dim innocuous and unheeded forever." From the silence of the eternities,” of which he so often spoke, there still sound, and will long sound, the tones of that marvelous voice.
Let us take one tender expression, written three or four years ago—one plaintive yet manful thought, which has never yet reached the public eye: “Three nights ago, stepping out after midnight and looking up at the stars, which were clear and numerous, it struck me with a strong, new kind of feeling: 'In a little while I shall have seen you also for the last time. God Almighty's own theater of immensity-the infinite made palpable and visible to me that also will be closed-flung too in my face and I shall never behold death any more.' The thought of the eternal deprivation even of this, tho this is such a nothing in comparison, was sad and painful to me.
And then a second feeling rose upon me: 'What if Omnipotence that has developed in me these appetites, these reverences, these infinite affections, should actually have said, Yes, poor mortal, such as you who have gone so far, shall be permitted to go further. Hope! despair not!' God's will, not ours, be done."
Yes, God's will be done for us and for him. The Lord gave, and the Lord taketh away.