Obrazy na stronie

A dispute has arisen between Greece and Turkey which, it is to be feared, will result in war. The ambassadors have been ordered to leave Athens and Constantinople. We earnestly hope that, if war does ensue, the Lord may be pleased graciously to prevent our own and other nations becoming engaged in it. The Great Powers of Europe seem to be in a condition very much like a quantity of tinder-a spark would set them alight. May He who governs the nations long keep that spark away, if it be His will.

The gales which are common at this season of the year, have been renewed with more than usual violence. A large number of shipwrecks are reported, involving a great loss of life. The account of one shipwreck, that of the Hibernia, is perhaps one of the most sad and touching that we have ever read. Truly “they that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters, these see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep.” How thankful should we be who have not to encounter such perils, and how heartily should our sympathy be excited at such a time for those who are at sea.

It seems almost as if it were a matter of necessity that wherever the white man settles down, there the native black population must become gradually exterminated. War has again broken out in New Zealand, and between the settlers and Indians in the interior of North America, and it seems as if it must continue to do so until the native population in each place is destroyed. What a sad thing this is! The white man, vastly superior in cultivation and intelligence, settles down amongst a multitude of poor savages, not to elevate, to help and bless them, but to become their direst curse; he comes amongst them-often unintentionally

as a firebrand; he gradually becomes possessed of their land; and they, retiring as he advances, at last become completely exterminated. Thus, e.g., we read in the newspapers that an American general has just begun winter operations against the Indians by a "terrible blow;" with a regiment of cavalry, we are told, he followed the trail of a notorious Indian chief, and, after a desperate encounter, killed him and every one of his warriors. And then it is added, “There is little doubt that this process will now be repeated pretty frequently, and it is not at all unlikely that by the spring the “Indians of the plains' will be reduced to a few hundred harmless wanderers. In the winter the warriors are forced to fix themselves in their villages; and in villages they may fairly be said to be at the mercy of the troops. This seems to be a matter of necessity, but is it really so ? Must the white man's advance be the black man's doom? We do not think so. We fear that the former is verily guilty, guilty of gross injustice and want of consideration for his weaker brother. If the former were to show the latter that he really had his interest at heart, and were to endeavour earnestly to make him a partaker of the blessings which he enjoys, more especially the blessings of the Gospel, we think that not even the appearance of a necessity would arise for any such cruel deeds, but that civilized and uncivilized would live together in peace, mutually benefiting each other.

The poor of London ought to be happy people. The world was startled some three years ago, to hear of the splendid gift which had been bestowed upon them by Mr. Peabody, of a quarter of a million of money ; but even if possible it must be more surprised to learn that he has supplemented that munificent gift by a further one of £100,000, which is to be expended for their benefit in a similar way to the former sum, viz., in

[ocr errors]



providing them with cheap and comfortable dwellings. England indeed owes a deep debt of gratitude to this noble and generous foreigner.

A correspondent of the Rock furnishes a ludicrous, and yet at the same time a sad, illustration of the way in which the Papacy still endeavours to delude its votaries with lying wonders. When travelling in Palestine, he paid a visit to Bethlehem; there he says, he “saw, of course, the manger;' also a crack in the roof of a cave, under the church, through which an angel whispered to Joseph the command to go into Egypt; also another cave, in which through a grating some bones were dimly seen—the bones of the innocents! On returning to the upper air we were shown in the sacristy, among other relics, one more curious (for bones will keep a long time), viz., an innocent's tongue! reposing delicately on a cushion of white satin, very prettily embroidered with seed pearls, under a glass case. To my heretical eyes it looked very like the tip of such a tongue as one often sees on a dinner table. But, as I had it on the word of a monk and a priest that I was deceived, I had nothing for it but to hold my tongue. On a subsequent visit, in company with a very lively English lady (a sad heretic, I fear), the same treasure was exhibited. She, forgetting she was in a foreign land, where her best course, if she wished not to be understood, was to speak her own language, said to me in Italian, 'Innocents' tongues must have been much larger in the day of Herod the king” than now.' The poor padre's face showed plainly how well he understood what was meant only for me, and he speedily locked up the treasure in its place of safety. Not long afterwards I made a third visit with a fresh party, but the tongue was not forthcoming. However, by dint of earnest inquiries, whether he had not other valuables than those he had exhibited, the old monk at last reluctantly brought it out. One of the party asked what it was. This

answer, It is the tongue of one of the mothers of the Innocents, and it is very much swollen by crying !! Surely this was a 'lie in hypocrisy,' and this is the genuine fund of Romanism.''

There are now between two hundred and three hundred convents, male and female, in Great Britain, and every one of them is closed to inspection, even to the very highest authorities. The door of every baron's castle is open to the law; the door of every citizen's dwelling is open to the law; the door of every factory and workshop is open, that the law may enter, and see to it, that no oppression or cruelty is done to any one within. But, when the law comes to the door of the convent, it finds it shut-bolted ; and bolted by edict of Parliament; and let the oppression, cruelty, and crime which may be enacted within be what they may, law cannot enter either to prevent or to punish it. Every cathedral, Dissenting meetinghouse, and Jewish synagogue in the kingdom is open, and the law can enter any hour and satisfy itself that all is right. The door of the Popish convent alone is closed. Well does a contemporary ask, “ Are Englishmen aware of this ? Or, are they willing that an anomaly so unfair, so alien to the whole spirit of the British Constitution, and which is creating a new slavery on British soil, should be continued ? We have been spending our blood and treasure to put down slavery in distant lands. We pride ourselves on the sacrifices we have made for this great object, and certainly for such an object no sacrifice could be too great. We boast of our love of liberty, and that the instant a slave touches our soil he is a free man; and yet without lifting a finger, or uttering a protest, we have permitted Parliament to set a hedge, through which law cannot pene

was the

trate, around these two hundred institutions of the worst of all kinds of slavery."

It is rumoured that the Pope has ventured still further to insult our nation by dividing Scotland into a number of dioceses, and appointing over them some more of his titular bishops; and from the names of the bishops being mentioned in the papers, the rumour will, in all probability, prove to be true. If so, this is another step in advance which Protestants ought thoughtfully to notice.

Reviews and Notices of Books. The Sower and The Little Gleaner are excellent monthly periodicals, con

taining much sound truth. London: Houlston and Wright, Paternoster

Row. The Life-Boat.-Too great an interest in this quarterly journal of the

National Life-Boat Institution cannot be manifested, involving, as is

does, the well-being of so many thousands of our maritime population. The Shipwrecked Mariner.-An admirable publication, which deserves

support, to enlist the sympathies of the public in behalf of this noble

undertaking. Golden Hours.--Edited by Dr. WHITTEMORE, Rector of St. James's, New

gate, London.-The article entitled “The German Philosopher in Queensland,” will be read with special interest. The Irish Church; or, Come to the Rescue.-A timely tract published by

Mr. Macintosh. Merry and Wise. Edited by Old MERRY. Leaves from the Book and its Story.

By L. N. R. The Mother's Friend.—The new numbers of these works

commend themselves for the variety and force of their articles. The British Workwoman Out and at Home, and The British Jurenile are already

universal favourites. London: Tweedie, 337, Strand.

[ocr errors]


God had spoken words of promise to the people of Israel, and no matter if the cloud remained stationary twenty years instead of a few days, God had said, “I will take you into the land of Canaan,” and this ought to have been enough for them. Mark the impatience which these people exhibited on this occasion. And there is here much practical instruction to God's people. How often do you say, "I am as convinced as that there is a God in heaven, that God will stand by His promises; He is not a man that He should lie, neither the son of man that He should

t.'" You say this, and you say well; but, then, what do you do? You go upon your knees in the attitude of prayer, and by the light of God's

word, you ask for what you think you ought to ask for—that which is for the Lord's glory and your own spiritual good, and that which He stands engaged to give. All this is reasonable, and right, and scriptural. But, then, you go a step further, and you are not satisfied to wait God's time. You, like the people of Israel, want the Lord to go forth at your bidding. He must do what you require now, and in the way you choose. It is a great comfort to the Christian when he is enabled to say, I shall ask the Lord for what I want; the more faith I exercise in His promises the better, but I shall leave all in His hands. He will act as Sovereign in the matter.-W. H. Krause.






[blocks in formation]


"Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any

trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.”—2 Cor. i. 4.

[ocr errors]

DISTRESS AND DELIGHT. " And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up

your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh."-LUKE xxi. 28. There is so much in Matt. xxiv., and in the chapter whence the above portion is taken, with respect to the destruction of Jerusalem, that so resembles the end of at least the present dispensation, that one seems at a loss to know to which the predictions have reference. In either case, it is quite clear that the events were of the most solemn and awful character, enough to excite terror and alarm in the stoutest heart, where the grace and power of God are unknown. The facts recorded in history respecting the siege and destruction of Jerusalem are distressing indeed. Josephus tells us that 1,100,000 perished by sword and famine, and that 97,000 of its hapless inhabitants were taken prisoners. Whatever, however, were the distresses attendant upon the destruction of Jerusalem, the prophecies of Scripture lead us to the conclusion that the scenes at the close of the present era will far outvie them for magnitude and importance. We do not attempt to enter into or dwell upon them. It is sufficient that the Lord Himself has declared, in connexion with those scenes, that “There shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth : for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.” Our present object is to consider the kind and gracious counsel given by the Lord to His dear disciples, in reference to those events. Hence He says, in the words before us, " And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.'

[ocr errors]


Observe, first, beloved, the promptitude that is here enjoined: “ When these things begin to come to pass ;” as much as to say, Be upon your watch-tower, look out for the very first signs, tokens, and indications. And this was a principle laid down by the Holy Ghost, through prophet after prophet, with regard to the first coming of Christ, and the various things which should betoken that coming. The same principle was enjoined by our Lord, with respect to many events which were predicted, especially in regard to His coming again—" without sin, unto salvation.” Dear reader, when we contemplate the fact of how much time has elapsed, how many generations have come and gone, since these utterances were made by our dear Lord and Saviour, how well may we be on the very tip-toe (as it were) of expectation. If the apostle, in his day, used such language as this,'“ Upon whom the ends of the world are come,” what shall we say, living, as we do, upwards of eighteen hundred years later? And sure we are, that if this spirit of watchfulness were more characteristic of our condition, in a spiritual point of view, it would tend in no small degree to lessen the weight of the cares and anxieties and turmoil of life. Prompted by the glorious anticipation of a speedy issue to all trials and afflictions, we should, under the precious power of the Holy Ghost, regard them as of little weight and importance. We should feel more peace and blessedness in the testimony, “ This light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” This was precisely the apostle's mode of action, because he directly adds: “ While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal: but the things which are not seen are eternal.” Yes, beloved, it is this faith's looking at things that enables the possessor to hold all temporal blessings with a loose hand, and to regard eternal realities with additional steadfastness, and a measure of that all-absorbing attention and interest to which they are entitled. Who felt this more than the apostle, when he declares, " And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof." But, alas! alas ! on the contrary, we believe that there are few of the children of God to be found, who do not mourn over the sad and terrible influence which earth and its entanglements have obtained over them. The more marked line of distinction between the Church and the world having so long comparatively disappeared, the Church has drunk into the spirit of the world. Although the distinction is absolutely as real as ever-Christ and Belial are no more united now then they were in our Lord's day-still the lack of outward persecution has led

to a species of compromise and

« PoprzedniaDalej »