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"I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it."-The Centurion (Matt. viii. 9).

"Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you."-Jesus (John xv. 15).

He who sits upon the throne, whose eyes are as a flame of fire, and his countenance as the sun shining in his strength, commands and it is done, speaks and it stands fast. He doeth as he will in the armies of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth. None dare stay his hand, or say, What doest thou? He has all at command, in heaven, earth, and hell, for the very devils are his servants. The world, both professing and profane, are servants to the King of kings and Lord of lords; and all obey his royal commands, but these are servants only, not sons. When it pleaseth the Eternal Spirit to take possession of sinners' hearts, and set up his throne therein, to show them their lost and ruined condition; cause them to cry for mercy, from a feeling sense of their need; take of the precious things of Jesus, and set the soul longing after them, longing to know that they have an interest in all that appertains to him-that he is theirs and that they are his; this is, indeed, a set time to favour them. When God the Father speaks to God the Son, God the Holy Ghost hears, receives, and testifies of it to the souls of the redeemed, for so said our precious Lord Jesus in the days of his flesh: "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth, for he shall not speak of himself, but whatsoever he shall (hear) that shall he speak, and he will show you things to come." This, then, is the office of God the Holy Ghost (as Jehovah's royal Servant-he is not a servant only, but) one with the Father and the Son, God over all, blessed for evermore. Holy angels are his servants, for they are "ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them that shall be heirs of salvation." The world is his servant, and must obey his commands, when he says, "Moab, let mine outcasts dwell with thee, and be thou a shelter unto them from the storm and a covert from the tempest." When God commanded the ravens to feed Elijah, they dare not eat neither bread nor meat, though they were ravenous birds of prey-a real type of the world. Balaam was his servant, and was obliged to speak that, and that only, which God, as a sovereign, put in his mouth, but never into his heart. Balaam never knew the sweetness, preciousness, and blessedness of the glorious truths he received from the mouth of God. This is a very solemn fact, seeing we may even receive divine communications from the Lord, and that divine truth may be blessed to others from generation to generation, yet we ourselves never know, taste, nor realize its blessedness, neither in this world nor in that which is to come. This is being a servant only, and not a son. Our blessed Lord says, "The servant abideth not in the house for ever, but the son abideth ever."

Men may even now be able to ascertain whether they are servants or



Our blessed Lord made this distinction: the servant knoweth not what his Lord doeth, but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Then lest any of the little ones amongst his dear family should be discouraged by the limited knowledge they may have of him, he kindly says, What ye know not now ye shall know hereafter." But in what does this knowledge which the sons have, differ from that of those which are merely servants? Let us see. Balaam had a knowledge of the security and blessedness of God's people; of God's unchangeableness in his love towards them; he had a knowledge in word only how God the Father beheld in Christ, the Son of his love, all Israel. "He hath not seen iniquity in Jacob, neither hath he beheld perverseness in Israel." He knew in the letter also, the unchangeableness of the Lord's purpose, for, saith he, "he hath blessed and I cannot reverse it. How shall I curse whom God hath not cursed? How shall I defy whom the Lord hath not defied ?" He would have done so if he could; but he could not, and why? He saw enough of God to know that he was not a man that he should lie, nor the Son of Man that he should repent." Hear his language, proceeding no doubt in rage from the enmity of his heart." Hath he said, and will he not do it? Hath he spoken, and shall it not come to pass?" Not a vestige of love is seen in him, neither towards the blessed Lord himself, nor to the highly-favoured objects of his love. No hatred to sin had he, neither any longing or crying to the Lord, when he saw their blessedness, so to let him be found covered, not in his own righteousness, but in the righteousness which is of God through faith; no entreating the Lord to let him see the good of his chosen, that he may rejoice with his heritage; no crying to the Lord to pardon his sin, because it was great. Though he saw he had sinned against the Lord, he nor Judas, never saw or felt their defilement and pollution, therefore never cried, "Wash me and I shall be clean." Poor Peter, when the Lord said, 66 except he washed him he had no part with him," cried out, "not my feet only, but my hands and my head." But how different in the cases just mentioned. Though Judas heard the blessed Jesus declare twice over, "Ye are not all clean,' yet he makes no effort to be cleansed, that he may have a part with Christ, because he had never been convinced of his lost and ruined state as a sinner, and therefore felt no need of it, as Peter, David, and Job did. No, the glorious light of God's countenance had never shone into his heart, as in Isaiah's, Daniel's, and the poor publican's, causing the latter to cry from sheer necessity, "God, be merciful to me, a sinner," "Pardon my sin, O Lord, for it is great;" "Save me, O Lord, for thy name's sake." Nor was any love manifested either in Balaam or Judas, as was in Mary and the poor Magdalene; the one wiping his feet with the hair of her head, when she had washed them with tears; the other seeking him early at the sepulchre, weeping. These were indeed strong proofs of love and affection to their divine Lord and Master, and all sprang from his great love to them. He having shed his love abroad in their hearts, they loved him in return, and thus manifested their love by their acts.

Now all these were sons and daughters of the Lord God Almighty, and not servants only; therefore great grace was shown them by God the Holy Ghost, making them vessels meet for the Master's use and in order to keep them fit for his use, a daily discipline is absolutely needful, for he says to all his royal nation (and especially to that part of them that

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he has designed for the ministry)" be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord." Now what are they to be clean from? Methinks not from the burden and plague of indwelling sin and corruption; for one of the sons said that he was " plagued all the day long ;" another said, "because of his foolishness his wounds were corrupt and stank ;" and another said (and a very eminent one too) "that in him, that was, in his flesh, there dwelt no good thing;" and another (even one that God himself had pronounced a perfect and an upright man, one that feared God and eschewed evil) called his Divine Master to witness that, "Behold, I am vile." These were not servants only, but sons of God-heirs, yea, joint-heirs with Jesus Christ. Another was favoured with a glorious sight of his Lord and Master, with his train (his Church) filling the temple, and the seraphims crying, "Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of his glory." And what were his feelings in this his best estate? Why, he mourns; "Woe is me, for I am undone; I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell among a people of unclean lips." But how did you know this, Isaiah? Let him answer for himself; "Mine eyes have seen the king, the Lord of hosts." And here he received pardon for all his sins, by a living coal being taken by one of the seraphims from off the holy altar, and laid on those lips that had so complained; then was the proclamation made to his soul, that his iniquity was taken away, and his sin purged. Hence when Jehovah asked, "Whom shall we send? and who will go for us?" He answered, rejoicing in the consciousness that his iniquity was taken away, and his sin purged, "Here am I, send me.” Now those that are servants only, never receive this precious knowledge of sins forgiven, iniquity taken away, and transgressions blotted out. They never know what it is to mourn over and confess their sins and ini.. quity before his gracious Majesty, and hear his glorious voice say, "Son, daughter, be of good cheer; thy sins, which are many, are all forgiven thee, go in peace." No, beloved, this precious knowledge is reserved and given to his sons and daughters only, that are to abide in his house for


Again, what are they to be clean from that bear the vessels of the Lord-for it is those that are prominently intended in the text quoted; not from temptation, neither from the world, the flesh, nor the devil; for the blessed Minister of all ministers was not free from these, and the servant is not greater than his Lord. We are told that he was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness, to be tempted of the devil; and that even when he was hungry, first he was tempted to gratify the devil by giving him an unnecessary proof of his sonship; for the devil well knew that he was the eternal Son of God. The next temptation was to commit suicide, and that on the ground of presumption; "If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down, for it is written he shall give his angels charge over thee, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone." As if he had said, if thou art the Son of God, God must take care of thee; therefore it matters not what you do, you cannot destroy yourself: but Christ repelled this temptation with, "It is written, thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God." The next temptation was to pay homage to Satan, on the ground of what he would give him; and he knew at the same time that he could give him nothing but what was his own already; yet he said, "All these will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me." Again he repelled him with, "It is written thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and

him only shalt thou serve." Now though through his being God and man in one person, he so valiantly and successfully rebuked Satan, yet Satan did not leave him till he had ended all his temptations, then he departed from him for a season. Now notwithstanding that he was such a glorious personage, and had all power in heaven and on earth, yet "he suffered being tempted." Here is one grand distinction between one that is a son, and he that is a servant only. However highly that servant may be esteemed and employed in the service of the temple, he does not "suffer being tempted." It is true, he that is a servant only is tempted, and falls by the temptation, as Balaam, Judas, and Saul, but he does not "suffer being tempted;" but all that are sons as well as servants, like their glorious elder Brother, "suffer being tempted," "for as he is so are we in this world ;" for he hath left us an example that we should tread in his steps and this, ye servants of the most high God, ye do, when the Holy Ghost, your glorious Teacher, leads you up into the wilderness dispensation to be tempted by the devil, either to give false proofs of your sonship, or to commit suicide, or to worship Satan, the god of this world, for what he will give. Ye are under the same blessed Guide, and treading the footsteps of your blessed Lord and Master; for as the Spirit Jehovah led up our glorious suffering Head into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil, so he leads forth all his suffering timid members into the field of conflict and strife, and then stands by to comfort, support, and cheer them on with his gracious "fear nots," saying, "Be strong and of good courage." Jesus also goeth before them to battle, shouting, "Fear not, I am thy shield and thy exceeding great reward;" and though through the clouds and darkness that may prevail in the field of battle, we may see neither our Guide nor Captain, yet they are always there, because he says that he will "guide us continually;" and our Captain declares that he will "never leave us," not even for a moment, much less forsake us; but will be with us even to the end of the world. What, then, have these sons of God to fear, since God the Holy Ghost is their Guide, and God the Son their glorious Captain to go forward and receive all before it can touch us? Well may the Church be called "terrible as an army with banners;" for the Lord is terrible when he cometh forth to battle; and he has declared that he will avenge his servants when he seeth that their power is all gone, that there is none shut up nor left.

Now this is one of the prominent things which they that bear the vessels of the Lord are to be clean from, that no flesh may glory in his sight. Hence the absolute necessity for all the cutting discipline under which they are called to pass, when God the Holy Ghost takes possession of their hearts, in order to bring down their fancied creature-strength and power; for from this vile root or tree all error springs, both in doctrine and practice. Hence it is at this high towering tree the Holy Ghost aims all his destructive blows, in order to prevent its flourishing and shooting forth its vile branches. By a variety of cutting dispensations, both in providence and grace, he hews down the tree, and takes away the fine spreading branches of creature uprightness, integrity, self-complacency, free-will, and pride; and like the holy watcher king Nebuchadnezzar saw in his dream, leaves nothing but the stump: but that contains the sap, and will be continually sending forth young shoots, which if allowed to remain on the stump, would very soon become injurious to the tree of life which the Holy Ghost has planted in the souls of all these sons; and

he will pull down the high tree of nature, in order to make room for the low tree of life to grow, and flourish, and spread forth its branches to the honour of the heavenly Planter; and thus adorn the garden of the Lord, and show forth his handywork.

R. S.


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He cannot cease to love


A searching reader of your Magazine having discovered many erroneous references in the letter of our brother Lane's, which appeared in your June Number, I have thought it right to examine and correct them; and if you will admit the enclosed, I think (although a repetition) this condensed view of such precious truths may be profitable and comforting to some of your readers, and will greatly oblige

Yours affectionately in gospel bonds,

All power in heaven and earth

Matt. xxviii. 18. Deut. xxxiii. 29. Isa. liv. 17.

Hence we are more than a match for all our enemies Isa. lix. 19.

The fulness of all wisdom centring in Him

Through Him made wise unto salvation, and to-
Know the power of his resurrection

This wisdom cometh from above, and we are
Made wise unto that which is good.
He is all love to his Church, and by this-

We are constrained to love Him in return

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E. S.

Rom. viii. 31-37.
Matt. iv. 1-11.

Col. ii. 3.

2 Tim. iii. 15.

Phil. iii. 10.

James iii. 17.

Rom. xvi. 19.

1 John iv. 16.

S2 Cor. v. 14.
1 John iv. 19.
John xiii. 1.
Mal. iii. 6.

Jer xxxi. 3.

John iii. 16.
Rom. v. 5.

He is the fulness of all grace and truth to and for John i. 16.

his Church

Phil. iv. 19.
Eph. iii. 8.

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