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indeed they are. As for the rest, who are not endued with faith, they shall perish, raging and blaspheming, as you do now. But, say you, "these doctrines open a door to ungodliness." I answer, Whatever door they may open to the impious and profane, yet they open a door of righteousness to the elect and holy, and show them the way to heaven and the path of access to God. Yet you would have us abstain from the mention of these grand doctrines, and leave our people in the dark as to their election of God-the consequence of which would be, that every man would bolster himself up with a delusive hope of a share in that salvation which is supposed to lie open to all; and thus genuine humility, and the practical fear of God, would be kicked out of doors. This would be a pretty way indeed of "stopping up the gap " Erasmus complains of. Instead of closing up the door of licentiousness, as it is falsely pretended, it would be, in fact, opening a gulph into the nethermost hell. Still you urge, "Where is either the necessity or utility of preaching predestination?" God himself teaches it, and commands us to teach it, and that is answer enough. We are not to arraign the Deity and bring the motives of his will to the test of human scrutiny, but simply to revere both Him and it. He who alone is all-wise and alljust can in reality (however things appear to us) do wrong to no man -neither can he do anything unwisely or rashly. And this consideration will suffice to silence all the objections of truly religious persons. However, for argument sake, let us go a step further. I will venture to assign over and above, two very important reasons why these doctrines should be publicly taught. First, for the humility of our pride, and the manifestation of divine grace. God hath assuredly promised his favour to the truly humble. By truly humble, I mean those who are endued with repentance, and despair of saving themselves; for a man can never be said to be really penitent and humble, till he is made to know his salvation is not suspended, in any measure whatever, on his own strength, machinations, endeavours, free will, or works, but entirely depends on the free pleasure, purpose, determination, and efficiency of another-even of God alone. Whilst a man is persuaded that he has it in his power to contribute anything-be it ever so little-to his own salvation, he remains in carnal confidence; he is not a self-despairer, and therefore he is not duly humbled before God. So far from it, that he hopes some favourable juncture or opportunity will offer, when he may be able to lend a helping hand to the business of his salvation. On the contrary, whoever is truly convinced that the whole work depends singly and absolutely on the will of God, who alone is the Author and Finisher of salvation, such a person despairs of all selfassistance; he renounces his own will and his own strength; he waits and prays for the operation of God; nor waits and prays in vain. For the elect's sake, therefore, these doctrines are to be preached, that the chosen of God may being humbled by the knowledge of his truths-selfemptied, and sunk as it were into nothing in his presence-may be saved in Christ with eternal glory. This then is one inducement to the publication of this doctrine-that the penitent may be made acquainted with the promise of grace-plead it in prayer to God, and receive it as their own. Second-the nature of the Christian faith requires it. Faith has to do with things not seen; and this is

one of the highest degrees of faith-stedfastly to believe God is infinitely merciful, though he saves (comparatively) but few, and condemns so many; and that his is strictly just, though of his own will he makes such numbers of mankind necessarily liable to damnation. Now these are some of the unseen things whereof faith is the evidence. Whereas, was it in my power to comprehend them or clearly to make out, how God is both inviolably just and infinitely merciful, notwithstanding the display of wrath and seeming inequality in his dispensations respecting the reprobate, faith would have little or nothing to do. But now since these matters cannot be adequately comprehended by us, in the present state of imperfection, there is room for the exercise of faith. The truths therefore respecting predestination, in all its branches, should be taught and published: they, no less than the other mysteries of Christian doctrine, being proper objects of faith, on the faith of God's people."


John in the Wilderness sendeth greeting to his venerable and aged sister under the apple-tree, with an earnest desire for a little of the first-ripe fruit, for the refreshment of those whose head is sick, and whose heart also is faint, yet desiring the sincere milk of the word, that they might grow thereby.


Upwards of a month has expectation been on tiptoe, that with a twig from the well-known apple tree my worthy friend would inflict the "forty stripes, save one (Deut. xxv. 3; 2 Cor. xi. 24) upon the young "Stripling," who, from not having the fear of it before his eyes, did exhibit her "basket of summer fruits," from the land of Judah (Jer. xl. 12) to the cold and nipping frosts of a January month, and to the gaze of all who look upon the city of our solemnities (Is. xxxiii. 20), yet is he not without hope that, though exposed, through his anxiety, that "the ploughman should overtake the reaper" (Amos ix. 13), no ill effects arose, nor has any injury been sustained, as it is well known the fruit this ancient dame is engaged to gather, is better than the most fine gold (Prov. viii. 19), and partaketh of the nature of the tree of life (Prov. xi. 30); and being a monthly fruit (Rev. xxii. 2) with medicinal properties (Ezek. xlvii. 12), it cannot be subjected to the state of "naughty figs" (Jer. xxiv. 2). Thus in laying up now and then a sample at our gates (Song vii. 13), it not only tends to call forth admiration, but an unqualified recommendation oft bursts forth from the lips of those that are asleep (Song vii. 9). "As the apple trees amongst the trees of the wood, so is my beloved amongst the sons" (Song ii. 3); and one thing is desired and earnestly sought after (Ps. xxvii. 4), that with our sister we might sit under his shadow and share in the sweetness of the fruit. Surely then, if I have erred beyond the benefit of clergy, I have not outstepped the bounds of my

venerable friend's "bowels of mercy" (Col. iii. 12), but in carrying out my future desires to go down and salute the children of the king, and the children of the queen (2 Kings, x. 13), I shall be so far favoured as to have an handbasket portion to take them, and not my own head put in a basket, as the kings sons of old (2 Kings, x. 7). David was honoured when he slew Goliah, but what honour would arise to Rebekah, if she slew "A Stripling?"

Solomon speaks of one who in "the greatness of his folly shall go astray" (Prov. v. 23); and it might be my case, in anticipating quite the reverse of my venerable friend, who, so far from treasuring up wrath against her "little brother (who in his childish act drew attention to her fruit basket) has been so fully engaged in the orchard amongst the trees, as not to have had time to make a selection, and draw attention towards "a basket of summer fruit." Well, well, we will patiently wait for the appointed time, being fully persuaded the word cannot be in error, when it says, "They shall bring forth fruit in old age" (Ps. xcii. 14); and, no doubt, after you have made a judicious selection, the spirit of a Jacob will move you to take of "the best fruits of the land" in your vessel, and in the enlargement of your heart, send "the tenant of the wilderness" "a little balm, and a little honey, spices and myrrh, nuts and almonds" (Gen. xliii. 11), which shall be distributed to the best of my judgment amongst the poor of the land, who, if thou set too high an estimation upon him, must present himself before the priest (Lev. xxvii. 8).

The wilderness is not the place for a dense population, yet those who dwell therein are, more or less, subjected to the aboundings of tribulation, and the sufferings of Christ in them (2 Cor. i. 5, Rom. v. 3), to whom a few more fruits of the valley would be acceptable (Song vi. 11), who, from the effect of the anointing (1 John. ii. 27), are constrained to call to remembrance the songs of the night, and in the communings of heart to make diligent search (Ps. lxxvii. 6), whose sickness is not unto death (John ii. 4), but the fruit of that mysterious act, when the skirt was thrown over them (Exodus xvi. 8). Nor have you any need to be apprehensive that any of the things you may send will be needless, for, amidst such pressing wants, we never are enabled to keep a stock on hand. The balm will do for those with us, between the joints of whose harness the well-directed bow has entered (1 Kings xxii. 34), causing in this view a grievous and incurable wound (Jer. x. 19), seeing they were the king's enemies (Ps. xlv. 5), the honey, because of its goodness (Prov. xxiv. 13), will, with the mixture of a little butter (Is. vii. 15), be of great service to those left in the land (Is. vii. 22), whose discernment needs to be improved, that they may refuse the evil, and choose the good. The spices and myrrh combined will form a royal draught for those who are privileged, when the north and south winds blow, to welcome the beloved into his garden (Song iv. 16; v. 1), at the time of the lilies feeding (Song vi. 3). And, as we have here and there one amongst us, from whose jaws the yoke hath been removed (Hosea ii. 4), who, being of full age (Heb. v. 14) and having their senses well exercised in the contingencies of a wilderness tenancy (Heb. xiii. 14), often go down to the gates to rehearse the righteous acts of the Lord (Judges v. 11), to these your

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nuts will yield pleasure, when in the enclosed garden they are refreshed with streams from the sealed fountain (Song iv. 12). And even our children, who are "playing on the hole, with their hands on the cockatrice's den" (Is. xi. 8), will rejoice to see the almonds which the rod yielded (Numbers xvii. 8), and patiently wait the fulfilment of that word upon which they hope (Rom, xv. 4), yet be not too sanguine respecting the results which may arise, nor in haste shut up your bowels of mercies" against us, but bear in mind that, as nature's Goliah, we had stood defying these things, rather than yielding under the reign of grace, our feeble assistance as "A Stripling."


We are taught from frequent lessons (alas! too soon forgotten) that neither the "fruit-bearing orchard" or "the perils of the wilderness" are to be with us "fixtures," the whole of this world's goods and chattels bearing the broad mark of "moveables." Thus it might not be unlikely that our venerable sister Rebekah has been called for a season to vacate the shady retreat under the apple-tree, to take upon herself the more onerous duty of a nurse, and act towards us in the capacity of a Naomi. We hail thee as our 66 nursing mother," and do trust from the well-known knowledge you have of the helpless state of all "new-born babes," you will not be slack in performing towards us the duties of your office. Do favour us with some account of those things which form the groundwork of your highly-interesting "nursery tales," such as the famine which first drove you and all your family from the "house of bread," into the "land of Moab," with all particulars of the Chilions and Mahlons which did there overtake you; for how often is the pearly tear like the dew-drop, seen sparkling in the eyes of our nursery plants, while the good matron rehearses over those things in which the hand of the Lord is seen, and the more so, when his renewed visitations are accompanied with the gift of bread (Ruth i. 1, 6).

Come then, Naomi, come, and let not thy new office lose its charter in becoming a sinecure. What if you have gone out full, and have returned home empty, you have no less enjoyed a pleasure in being emptied, and anon filled, we would sympathize with you in thy full cup of Marah's bitter waters that have been wrung out to you (Ps. lxxiii. 10), but they have been of "thine own cistern" (Prov. v. 15); and no less rejoice also in the springing well which has followed thee through all the intricate paths of this in-and-out world, but thy Husband's Kinsman is near unto thee, and of great wealth. We are fond of gleaning in his fields when his smiles and approbation give us authority so to do, and even in the night season a visit to his winnowing floor has amply repaid us for so doing, while his hand has measured out to us the needful grace to sit still, and see how the matter would fall out, that concerns us so much. Seeing thou art so conversant with his ever-stirring and indefatigable mind not to be in rest until he shall have ended the matter, we do, in the sincerity of our hearts, promise that, whilst favouring us with your "nursery tales," should the day dawn break in upon us, we will tell thee all that is done by the good man for us, and when called in the gate to bear witness that all that was Elimelech's, and Chilion's, and Mahlon's, with poor Ruth, the Moabitess, has been purchased by Boaz, we will, with the worthy woman of Bethlehem, unite, in congratulating our venerable sister in

her new character of Naomi, the nurse, saying, "Blessed be the Lord which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel," for shall not this kinsman be unto thee" a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thy old age?" (Ruth iv. 14, 15).

Will not this be found a more honourable employment for one of those few honourable women of this day, than chastising thy little brother for distributing the fruit you sent amongst the wandering tribe who, like the sons of Rechab (Jer. xxxv. i. 10), can neither build houses, sow seed, or plant vineyards?" Wot ye what I say, and the Lord give you understanding that we of the nursery might profit in these things which thou shalt communicate, and no heart will be more gladdened than thy fearful and timid brother, “John in the wilderness," who, after great care, and much kind nursing, remains to this day but Newick. A STRIPLING.


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To the Editor of the Gospel Magazine.


I doubt not you will have as much pleasure in receiving, as I have in sending, you the following testimonial, and its answer, from our beloved minister and friend, the Rector of W—. at which place for the present I am a resident, and truly experience


"God moves in a mysterious way;"

and if you turn to page 183 of "Heart-Breathings," and in mind revert to that happy morn, when, by the Providence of God we met in the loved School-room of A- L-, you may imagine it was neither more nor less than the arm of Omnipotence which uprooted me from that loved abode, occasioning "heart breakings" as well as "heartbreathings," which, in turning over this moment the leaves of your book, under that title, I find described in part, at page 119. Yours in truth and sincerity,

W. A. M.


"As a token of their esteem and affection; and to prove their value for the preaching of the free-grace gospel (committed to him by the great Bishop of the Church) by which, through his instrumentality, their souls have, from time to time, been fed, strengthened, comforted, and edified. And they pray that the rich unction of the Holy Ghost may abide upon his heart, watering and invigorating his own soulrevealing to him more of the abounding fulness that is in Christ Jesus -and leading him daily more and more experimentally into the "length and breadth, and depth, and height of the love of God, which passeth knowledge" that he may come forth before the Church, and give out that which he has received, to their joy and edification, and to the glory of the Triune Jehovah-Father, Son, and Holy Ghost."

To which the following answer was returned :—

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