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to set a mark on the men who sighed and cried for the evils that were done around them? Was it because they were not, or because they were, in sympathy with Holy God and holy heaven? I tell you plainly that a Heaven of Indifference, moving for ever in the circle of its own satisfactions, and not grieving for the evils and sorrows of others, is not a Heaven that I can respect. God, in the Man of sorrows, teaches me a very different lesson about God and His heaven. I fancy your conception will be found to be that of some sublime Hindoo heaven, and not at all of a Christian Heaven. Know you not that Jesus was crucified, because in spirit God had been crucified from the foundation of the world? The fallen universe is God's Cross; and all Heaven is in sympathy with Him. God's joy and rest in Himself have never been disturbed, but His joy and rest in His creation have been greatly disturbed, yea changed into sorrow and labor. The manifestation of God in Heaven, quite as much as on earth, is Innocence, suffering, and "as it had been slain.”
ARE Hindoos more deeply devoted to their idolatry than Englishmen are to theirs?
Englishmen could abandon the worship and service of the only living idol, they would find it comparatively easy to get the Heathen to cast their dead idols to the moles and to the bats. But if the authority of the grand idol, (self,) were to be repudiated in favor of pure Christianity, (selfsacrifice,) what would become of English society? From centre to circumference, would it not break up, and be no more? Is not the British Empire as grand and proud a development of self-will, as the world ever saw? If self-will were slain, English society would be found, (in much the same condition as a man with his back bone taken out,) not bordering on chaos, but chaos itself. It would be Genesis over again: "In the beginning English society was without form and void." I will not bring down on me the curses of all Englishmen, by saying, that a totally new beginning of this sort is desirable; and yet if one had the opportunity, it might be well to whisper into the ear of each, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, thine own self-will is the bar that threatens to separate thee from the Life of Jesus, which is the Eternal Life.
WHOLESOME fruits and deadly poisons have
in them the same properties; but they differ in their proportions. If the proportions are right the thing is good if the proportions are wrong the thing is evil.
ASHES are born in the fire: yet nothing presents greater resistance to fire, or will quench it Query Is not all matter spirit-born? yet it is matter that resists and quenches spirit.
"NATIONAL literature is now rather an unmeaning term; the epoch of World-Literature is at hand, and every one must strive to hasten its approach."
THE three methods of relieving the spirit from the dominion of the flesh.
1.-" Sow your wild oats." Let the flesh have its day. In due time sensualism will exhaust its resources. The worn-out flesh will give up the ghost, and the noble soul, delivered from her base partner, will be free to pursue her own purer life.
2. Give your flesh no quarter. Indulgence will feed its strength.
3.-"Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh."
The first prescription has great authority, (namely, that of the world, the flesh and the devil,) but it is positively bad. There is some truth in it, but a lie is hidden in the truth. It is quite true that the indulgence of the flesh will weaken, and, in the end, destroy it; but it is also true that the spirit which yields to the government of the flesh, will be an earthly, fleshly spirit, when the flesh is dead. The flesh does not indulge itself from itself, but from the spirit. The spirit indulges itself, by the flesh. If the spirit by nature is carnal and at enmity with God, and hence a child of wrath, at the end of a carnal life it must be confirmed in its carnality, and, therefore, be more fixedly at enmity with God, and, therefore, more utterly a Ichild of wrath.
If the second prescription is better, it is, nevertheless, altogether inadequate. Force may suppress, but it does not convert. A living power suppressed, secretly accumulates energy.
The third prescription says nothing about either indulging or restraining the flesh; but proposes a new life. a new sphere for the spirit. Find
occupation for your spirit in a world that is above the flesh. You have a spirit, inquire for its own kingdom, enter it, and become a citizen. Enter it again and again, walk in it, and by degrees, new tastes, and indeed a new nature, will grow in your spirit, corresponding with the new world in which you live and walk. You will find less and less difficulty, in abstaining from the lusts of the flesh. Another class of affections will be awakened in you, and a higher class, and inferior desires will abate. Your chastened spirit will be powerfully drawn to its own satisfactions, and will not only not consent to the violent solicitations of the flesh, but the flesh itself, under the calm, subduing influence of your purer spirit, will become a dignified servant in waiting upon its superior.
Good gardeners know a better way of conquering the wild thorn than by uprooting and destroying it, namely, by setting it in their garden and inoculating it with some queenly rose, by which it expends its energy not upon itself, but contributes it to that which is above itself; and, as a reward, is crowned with a glory which it could not produce.