« PreviousContinue »
precious to believers is the thought that He is ordering and contriving and settling all their affairs, that He is "ruling them prudently," and will bring all their matters to a successful issue. And how does it become them to submit to his righteous and wise government, and to seek to have every "thought brought into captivity to obey Him." Shechem also means a "load placed on the shoulder." Jesus is the great burden-bearer of his church." "Cast thy burden on the Lord; He shall sustain thee "-thee and thy burden too. A third meaning portion." "The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup." A goodly portion truly, "They shall rejoice in their portion."
is a "6
Hebron, from a root signifying joined, associated; hence companion, fellow. Christ joined himself to our nature, and became a partaker of our misery and degradation, that He might associate us with himself in glory. He stooped to be made our fellow, in the dungeon, that He might make us his companions on the throne: such too as He could find complacency and delight in.
Bezer, signifying a rock, or strong place. And "who is a rock save our God?" "He is the Rock; his work is perfect." He is a sure foundation, and a strong habitation. "Be thou to me for a rock of habitation, whereunto I may continually resort. And its being said, "Bezer in the wilderness," makes it peculiarly suitable. How needful that poor pilgrims, passing through this waste-howling wilderness, should have a "place of repair," "a hiding place, a strong habitation," to take refuge in, in storms and tempests.
Ramoth, signifying "high,"" above comprehension," " most precious." How forcibly does this name set forth unto us the Lord Jesus Christ, who is "by the right hand of God highly exalted," who has " a name above every name," whose "riches are unsearchable," and therefore "above comprehension;" whose "love passeth kuowledge," and who is to the believer "a stone most precious." It is said, Ramoth in Gilead. Gilead was the land of spices. The church says of Christ, "A bundle of myrrh is my beloved unto me." His name is most fragrant.
Golan, signifying a passage." Jesus says, "I am the way. No man cometh unto the Father but by me." Jesus is not only "our way to the Father, but He is the Father's way to us." He is the Daysman betwixt us, that can lay his hand upon us both. He is the ladder set upon the earth, whose top reacheth unto heaven." God could never have reached fallen, guilty, man but through Jesus, their Elder Brother. All grace, all glory, comes to them through Him, for of Him and by Him and to Him, are all things, to whom be glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
ONE THAT HAS FOUND FAVOUR.
66 CAST DOWN, BUT NOT DESTROYED."
How sweet it is my dear friend in the Lord, to trace a loving Father in every thing! every word written or spoken! Most conspicuously do I perceive His tenderness in disposing the hearts of many of His deeply taught and exercised children, to write to me, a poor pilgrim in the zigzag path. I thank you most sincerely for your truly kind letter-you tell me "all is well :" yes, I believe it. I have been brought through "great and sore troubles," and I shall be again. What a precious Psalm is the 71st! You are indeed right in saying that my "heart aches," but I did not think that you would have discovered it. I had scarcely any opportunity of speaking to you when you were here-the presence of others interfered; but even had that not been the case, I could not have said much; I find I can only tell my sorrows to ONE, even to Him who "is touched with the feeling of our infirmities:" and often when, even to Him I can scarcely open my lips, to know the truth of what David expressed—“ Lord, all my desire is before Thee, and my groaning is not hid from Thee," is very blessed.
I trust that your voyage was a happy one, and that you had the great comfort of finding your little ones well; how delightful it is to meet those we love even after a short absence-what unspeakable bliss hereafter, when the rough ocean of life is passed, "the redeemed of the Lord" meet on Canaan's shore! Sin and sorrow all over, and the consciousness of being for ever with Jesus, filling each soul with rapture!
I shall consider it a privilege to hear from you whenever you have time to bestow upon me; and when you are enabled to do so I trust that you will remember me in your prayers. When I am as it were possessed with "a dumb spirit,” it is a comfort to know that some are pleading for me.
Believe me, my dear Friend, yours faithfully in the hope of the glorious gospel of free grace,
LOVE TO THE BRETHREN.
August 28, 1847.
It appears a long time since I heard of you, and I feel disposed this morning to inquire after your welfare, being one in whom I am particularly interested from various causes; for oftentimes when my
heart is cold, shut up, buried in self to all others, if you come across my mind, instantly an interest is felt, and a warm, expanded, and forgetfulness of self is experienced, and the petition is mentally poured forth, Lord be with him, bless him, support and succour; stand by him, specially, very specially, for thine own name and mercy sake. My dear friend, I am persuaded it is love to Jesus that is the connecting link between the one family, chosen, beloved, and redeemed by Him. When a serse, a feeling sense, of this inexplicable truth is felt in the soul, the quiet it produces, the calmness that pervades the mind, the intensity of the love, the devoutness and sincerity of the adoration, and in deep soul feeling how prostrate are we at his feet; nothing like love to conquer our rebel thoughts, sighis, looks, words, tears, and actions; we are delighted captives, and yet free; nothing like love to produce real submission to his sovereign will, however painful and oppressive that will may be to our fleshly feelings. To believe in him, to trust him entirely, and implicitly for every thing, is the desire of my heart; for him to lead, and me to follow, for him to place me wherever he may see fit, for me to cheerfully give up all right in myself. But these lessons I daily find hard to learn,
Let me hear from you soon, and believe me, yours in love and affection for Jesus' sake,
HOPING AGAINST HOPE.
MY DEAR SIR,
In one of the sweet little tracts you enclosed, you remark that, "to meet with a fellow pilgrim in this wide wilderness is no small mercy ;" and, oh, how deeply I felt the truth of this when, on Sunday evening, your letter was handed to me, when I had anticipated hearing nothing but a discussion on the last Punch papers or Illustrated News, (arriving always just after dinner on Sunday evenings), forming a theme for conversation on that day. We would feel it our sweet privilege to be speaking, as the King's Sons, of our reserved inheritance, our Father, our Home.
Oh, in the midst of all this heart aching void around ine, how cheering to feel I was borne up in prayer before the Lord, still in fellowship with His dear children, though I was fancying myself so exiled; and how rejoiced I am to think not any longer the Unknown Messenger of the Lord bidding me, with fresh spirit, take up my cross, since it but leads to the crown; telling me these sore trials were but the envelopes of love. But oh, my dear friend, with such little, such dim faith, how shall I be able to read the writing, recognize that it is my Heavenly
Father's own hand addressing them to me.
That sweet hymn of poor
"'Tis my happiness below,
But with humble faith to see;
The whole of the hymn is so just in tune with what you tell me, and I do believe it; but with me it all hinges on Jesus being manifestly near them. Indeed, we can sing "the bitter is sweet, and the medicine is food."
May you, my dear sir, find it in your heart still to pray much, very much for me; I need it more than I can express, for often I seem unable to pray for myself. Oh, happy, happy souls, that are safely gathered from this terrible wilderness, where we are so driven about, so often quite losing the light of our Father's countenance, lest it seems as if it were to feel the bitterness of our fallen state, alienation from the life of God, such distance from Him in whom it is we live, move, and have our being. I do not know if this can be common to the Lord's reconciled, chosen ones; I am often afraid I cannot be one, though I love them so dearly; but surely the Lord would not half awaken and then leave me to my nature's blindness.
The sheep of Christ are to go in and out and find pasture, but how little can I enter into such a state of rest. I was thinking very much about the life abiding in Christ, the Temple of His people, from Revelations, then again, as the daily bread satisfied with goodness of His house. I see that Canaan is indeed a goodly land, but I cannot in spirit get possession; can, then, mine be any spot of the Lord's children?
H. E. D.
A GRIEVOUS OVERSIGHT.-A friend of mine was travelling in company with a Romish priest the other day. The air keen, and the journey long, all were glad at length to reach an inn, where provisions being spread, the whole party sat down with a good appetite. Pursuing their journey afterwards, something happened to transpire about the day or the date; when one present became almost paralyzed-it was the priest. By some means, he had forgotten himself, and eaten meat on a fast-day! Poor man! I need scarcely add, he was mute the rest of the journey. What can such a system make of the saying of our Lord, Luke vi. 1-5?
WAITING THE MASTER'S CALL.
To the Editor of the Gospel Magazine.
As standing in union to Him who is the Head of all living. Our venerable sister, Rebekah, having, by divine help, plucked a little more fruit from the "apple-tree," I feel desirous to throw them, not into your "waste-basket," as our incog. brother "Crispin" says, but would rather they were presented before those who can say, As the apple trees amongst the trees of the wood, so is my beloved amongst the sons "for which purpose, I would solicit your consent, in admitting the use of your handbasket of network for that purpose. The goodly dame has duly administered her "excellent oil" for my last bold act of publishing upon the house-tops what she had written under the apple-tree; and I smile at her aptitude in quoting Solomon, when her eye shall see this, "A reproof entereth more into a wise man than au hundred stripes to a fool." Willingly shall I bear all her hard words, which die with the voice, if it only provoke her to the good work of fruit-gathering, and now and then send me the tithe, which I cheerfully promise to divide amongst the tribes of Levi, to whom it pertaineth, "and the Levite (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee), and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow which are within thy gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; and there ye shall eat before the Lord your God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto ye and your household, wherein the Lord thy God hath blessed thee." The good Lord grant our venerable sister may, in the language of an ancient dame, say unto us, her servants, "Go on before, behold I come after you."
MY DEAR BROTHER IN THE LORD,
I find it is three months this day since I received your last kind epistle, and doubtless many hard thoughts have passed through your mind against your aged sister Rebekah, or it may be, you have concluded her Divine Master had commanded her to be brought up out of the city of David" to the house he had built for her, and all the redeemed of the Lord. But it is not so, for, although when your letter came to hand, I had been confined to my bed and room for some weeks, and for weeks after, so that both myself and friends thought it was the winding up of my school experience previous to being taken home, yet my heavenly Father, who is " wonderful in counsel and excellent in working," thought otherwise, and saw it good for me to have a little more training, seeing, no doubt, that I am always more ready to talk of the theory, than to carry out into practice, what I prefess to have learned, either for my own advantage, the good of others, or the glory of his holy name. Indeed, I was inclined to dispute the point with him, for, after all these years spent at school, I found that i have nothing, can do nothing, can receive nothing, and am nothing, without Him, and therefore hoped to be taken home to dwell with him for ever. This wow d eem presumptuous in me, in the eyes of so e, to think that such a poor worse than nothing creature should hope to enter that kingdom,