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"Rejoice, 0 young man, in thy youth, and let thy heart cheer thee ia the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment." These words are tinged with the bitter irony of the Preacher, who places prominently before youth the smooth and enticing desires and ways of the senses, seemingly counselling him to follow them in all their fulness, and then concluding with an ominous— a terrible—but: "But know thou that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment." He, in the age in which he lived, could see and foresee the blinding net of false hope and expectation thrown far and wide to entrap the giddy and heedless victim, and his every word is replete with instruction and warning. Listen to the embodiment of wisdom proceeding from the same pen, young men—and young women, too—"Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth." What little heed is paid to this wise advice! Everything else in the shape of fleshly gratification—the latest fashionable garb, the neatest pattern of jewellery, the adornment of body from head to foot—is studied, carefully considered, and anxiously anticipated. The rigid forms of an affected etiquette, the pomposity of manner, the copying the ways and actions of their betters, are sought after with as much eagerness as if it were possible to enjoy their possession for ever, or to carry them into the sphere where neither riches, nor silver, nor gold is of the least value.
"Let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth," misguided soul; walk in the way that is pleasant to thine eyes, gratifying to thy tastes, and consonant with thy wishes; restrain not thy sensual, thy temporal, longings; curb not the unbridled lusts of thy flesh and the pride of thy life; strive not to tread in wisdom's ways and to follow on in the narrow road of eternal glory; and then, when too late, thou shalt find, deluded soul, that for all thy negligence of "these things God will bring thee into judgment."
"Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth," while the evil days come not (upon thee), nor the years draw nigh when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them." A seductive and dangerous notion exists among young men that there is plenty of time, and opportunities in abundance, for them to think about the salvation of their souls. They argue, if such a thing is mentioned to them as preparation for another world, "It will be time enough to think about that when we have given over the enjoyments ordained and specially intended for us, that we should not be for ever pining by reason of the straightlaced garb of religion being thrust upon us and most unwillingly worn." They seem to be possessed with the idea that even to.participate in a slight degree in the outward forms of religious worship is an unpleasant and an unnecessary restraint upon them. And probably, to a Christian reader, it will not be a little startling to be assured that numbers of young men—aye, and young women, too—if called upon, either by reason of the requirements of duty, or, perhaps, at the request of a friend, to find such a verse of such a book, have not known whether to turn to the Old Testament or the New for the portion sought. Alas! that whilst missionaries are scattered all over the world to guide and instruct the uncivilized nations and to introduce the light of the Gospel, there should be found amongst ourselves in abundance thp darkness and ignorance of which we need heartily be ashamed.
Another evil, and one that applies not only to the young, but, it is to be feared, to the aged, too, is the inability to bear the taunts and jibes of scoffers, who, perceiving the keenness of their weapons, smite right and left without distinction, bruising and cutting the dignity of the sufferer. And it must be admitted that it is, humanly speaking, galling and humiliating to be made the butt and ridicule of jeering despisers. But there is an example on record—a high, a holy, and a sinless example—the crucified Jesus—whose sufferings in this respect, as in all others, transcendently exceeded the tribulation, and exercises, and afflictions of the most sorrow-stricken being. See Him on the cross of shame, bleeding and agonizing in mortal throes, enemies for His guards and thieves for His companions; see Him in the judgment-hall; and then compare, if you can, your sufferings with His, the revilings of your enemies with His, their jibes and taunts and contumely with those of the Jews—and He the Saviour, and you but—what ?—a worm! Let the young men of the world, then, be careful in their selection of companions, slow to make the acquaintance of everybody or anybody who may throw themselves in their way, unhesitatingly refuse to countenance evil, and to strive diligently to obtain the divine blessing of an omniscient God, throwing their cares and resting upon Him, looking to Him for guidance, direction, and control through the intricate paths of a transitory life, praying to be delivered from the bondage of sin, the assaults of Satan, and to triumphantly conquer at the close of the strife.
THE PROGRESS OF POPERY.
Sir,—I send the enclosed that you may see what the Eomanists are doing. I am a railway official, to whom this was addressed. I am one of a body of about 200,000. Cannot the Evangelical party do something similar ?—Yours, &c.
The Railway Guild Of The Holy Cross. Object:—The spread of the Catholic Faith among the Members of the Railway Service. This Guild has been formed primarily for Railway Officers and Servants, but any person desirous of doing so may become an Associate. Further particulars may be had on application to
DEJECTED, BUT NOT DESTROYED.
When earthly shadows gather,
Stretch out thy hand to Jesus,
Why should we walk in darkness
When light is close at hand? Or why, with joy so near us,
Go mourning through the land? If earthly hopes can falter,
We have a hope in heaven; We took it from the altar,
Where life for sin was given.
What though our daily pathway
Christ can make smooth its roughness,
Oh, what a precious Saviour,
In sorrow's darkest day;
He still will be our stay.
Make soft our hearts, dear Jesus,
Fill them with love to Thee;
Let us be Thine!—and free.
Come darkness or come light;
Thy smile is ever bright. A. B.
Rectortes ixvfa (fadnuis.
SPIRITUALISM AND CHRISTIANITY.
We have, from time to time, denounced Spiritualism in the strongest terms we could employ. Still, "we regret to say, this new device of Satan, not only continues to exist, but that actually some persons who have stood high for years in the Church and the world have lately identified themselves with it. How a Christian could embrace this blasphemous novelty we cannot understand; yet such, we repeat, is the fact. Probably, few persons have seen more of Spiritualism, in what are called its manifestations, than ourselves; and therefore few are better qualified to speak of it: but we will not go into that point.
Our object just now is simply to impress on faithful ministers of Christ that it is their duty to denounce Spiritualism from the pulpit with all the earnestness they can feel, and on the editors of evangelical journals, that they are bound to warn those who have hitherto been regarded as bohovers in Christ, but have become Spiritualists—that Spiritualism is wholly incompatiblo with true Christianity.
We happen to be personally acquainted with the most intellectual men and women in what is called the Spiritual world—men and women who are the acknowledged leaders in the regions of Spiritualism; and wo assert that not one of those known to us is in the habit of attending any place of Christian worship. We say this as the result of answers given to questions which we have put to them. Can, then, those be Christians who never meet together to worship God in public through Christ Jesus? And, if not, how can anyone reconcile his conduct in holding Spiritualist views while he professes to be a Christian?
Wo sincerely hope that ministers of the Gospel and conductors of Christian journals will awake to a sense of their duty in relation to the blasphemous novelty of Spiritualism, in which imaginary spirits are substituted for God Himself.
Spiritualism is one of the most fearful tyrannies ever exercised over the human mind. Those who embrace it become its veriest slaves. Its influence over them is nothing short of demoniacism. Surely, then, the pulpits of our land ought to resound with warnings against this most recent master deception of the " god of this world," and our Evangelical journalism ought no less to raise its loudest and most emphatic voice in its denunciations of the new blasphemy.— Christian Standard.
A NOBLE-MINDED BOY.
I Was requested to meet some ministers to-day, in order that we might mutually consider what could be done on behalf of a brother clergyman upon whom the Lord had most painfully and distressingly laid His afflictive hand, he, at the same time, having a large family dependent upon him. By this affliction he is rendered so completely prostrate as at once to deprive his family of any further supply, as far as the poor head of it is concerned. Upon joining the brethren in question, the clergyman at whose house we met handed me a letter which he had just received from a youth at a college-school, a former member of his congregation, and where the sick and disabled clergyman had officiated as curate. The writer of the letter is a youth of fifteen years of age, and it
was to the effect, that having heard the Rev. was seriously ill, and
that a subscription was being raised for him, would the Rev. J. H. (his former pastor) kindly apply £5 of his savings-bank's money to the good cause? The letter was accompanied by the savings-bank book itself, with an order for the Rev. J. H. to receive, upon application, the said £5. Having handed me the letter, Mr. H. likewise handed me the bank-book itself, upon reference to which I saw the first entry of a deposit was made in December, 1864, the sum total deposited being a shade over £21. So that this dear boy, upon being made acquainted with the severe (and it is feared irremediable) illness of the respected curate of his former pastor, directly gave up nearly a fourth-part of the savings of his nine-years' pocket money.
Noble-minded youth, the God of heaven bless thee and keep thee! May He shower down upon thee of His richest blessings temporally and spiritually! May He, who hath declared that "not so much as a cup of cold water only, given in the name of a disciple, shall in no wise lose its reward," be mindful very specially in thy case of His own covenant word! May He be thy Guardian and Guide here, amid all the besetments and entanglements of a sin-polluted world; and may He be thy eternal Portion hereafter, when time, with all its trifles and its troubles, shall be no more! So prays your unknown friend and admirer, D. A. D.
THE TRAINING OF CHILDREN.
"Who knows," asks Bishop Beveridge, "but that the salvation of ten thousand immortal souls may depend upon the education of ono child?" Let no one be discouraged by the difficulty or the magnitude of the work. Emit does not always immediately appear. Cases have been known in whioh a mother's counsels, example, and prayers produced their effect many years after she was laid in the silent grave. "We cannot give our children grace," it is often said; but they who thus speak must know there is One who can—One with whom "all things are possible." "The God of all grace" has said, "I will pour my Spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring." What are difficulties before Omnipotence? What stiff neck cannot He bend? What hard heart cannot He soften? What refractory spirit cannot He subdue? What wayward prodigal cannot He reclaim?
It must be admitted, indeed, that in some instances faithful mothers nave been comparatively unsuccessful. A son may wander from the crue path which has been marked out for him. But these are the rare exceptions. The general rule is, "Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Dr. Clarke, commenting upon this passage, says, "The Hebrew of this clause is curious—'Initiate the child at the opening (the mouth) of his path.' When he comes to the opening of the ivay of life, being able to walk alone and to choose; stop at this entrance and begin a series of instructions, how he is to conduct himself in every step he takes. Show him the duties, the dangers, and the blessings of the path; give him directions how to perform the duties, how to escape the dangers, and how to secure the blessings which all lie before him. Fix these on his mind by daily inculcation, till their impression is become indelible; then lead him to practise by slow and almost imperceptible degrees, till each indelible impression becomes a strongly-radicated habit. Beg incessantly the blessing of God on all this teaching and discipline; and then you have obeyed the injunction of the wisest of men. Nor is there any likelihood that such impressions shall ever be effaced, or that such habits shall ever be destroyed."
CHURCH PASTORAL AID SOCIETY. On Sunday, 30th ult., the annual sermons in aid of this Home Missionary Society of the Church of England, which, for the last thirty-six years, has enabled clergymen to supply Gospel ministrations to the teeming populations of hundreds of parishes, particularly in the large manufacturing towns of the north—were preached in the Cathedral, St. Mary de Lode, and Christ Church, Spa. The Rev. Flavel Cook, of Clifton, advocated the cause of the society at the Cathedral. The rev. gentleman's subject in the morning was "Our Lord Feeding Five Thousand in the Desert" (Matt xiv. 16),—" They need not depart; give ye them to eat." The discourse was an able exposition of the rich and abundant blessings of the Gospel, to supply the spiritual necessities of mankind. Being Advent Sunday, the first special evening service was held in the nave. A large congregation assembled. The Rev. Flavel Cook again occupied the pulpit, and delivered a masterly sermon on the cardinal doctrine of Christianity—the Atonement—founded on the declaration of St. Paul in the 1st Epistle to the Corinthians, i. 23—"We preach Christ crucified." At Christ Church, in the morning, the Rev. Dr. Doudney, vicar of St. Luke's, Bedminster, set forth "the Gospel of the grace of God," as embodied in the striking passage in Isaiah i. 18—" Come now, let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as enow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." First, the condition of man—as totally corrupt, depraved, and helpless—was declared, on the testimony of God Himself; secondly, the compassion of God towards His fallen and rebellious creatures; thirdly, the cure for their moral and spiritual maladies, found in the absolutely finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the cross, irrespective of any works of man, or priestly assumptions, or sacramental efficacy. The finished work of Christ must be apprehended by faith, and applied to the heart by the power of the Holy Ghost. The preacher said, in these days, when the Blessed truths of God's Word and of the Reformation are being assailed and undermined, it is especially requisite that the pure Gospel of Christ should be boldly and unflinchingly proclaimed. In the evening, at St. Mary de Lode, Dr. Doudney took for the basis of his discourse a portion of the Epistle for the day (Rom. xiii. 11),—" Knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep," &e. which, he stated, contained the Apostle's exhortation and expectation. In speaking on the introductory words, "knowing the time," Dr. Doudney said that the spot where they were assembled, as well as the character of the times which had fallen upon them, might well lead to deep searchings of heart. There were those who had dared to pronounce as "unredeemed villains" such men .as he who had suffered martyrdom within a few yards of the spot where they were then gathered together, and who, like the Apostle,