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you not perceive that two things, therefore, must be done for us? We require a medium to see by, as well as eyes to see with; to the revelation of the Gospel must be added the regeneration of the Holy Spirit; in other words, we must have in Christ an object for faith to see, and in faith we must have eyes to see Christ. Inhabitants of a Christian land, we possess one of these, -like the Hebrews in Goshen we have light in our dwellings; and so far we differ from the heathen, for they have neither light nor sight. They live in darkness so gross, that they do not distinguish purity from pollution. They have no more idea of the way of salvation, than the blind 'have of colours. They do not know God. Some worship a cow; some a serpent; some a stone; some the very Devil. In them, reason crouches to adore a beast; and man, made in the image of God, bows his erect form and noble head before a lifeless block. When, from the study of that instinctive and unerring wisdom with which the lower animals—the stork in the period of her migrations, the bee in the construction of its cell--act in their allotted spheres, we turn to this amazing, and all but incredible senselessness, and stupidity of man, what an illustration have we of the saying, “If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness !"
But we, who dwell in this land, as I have already said, live in light. Like the angel whom John saw, we stand in the sun. Comparing it with most other lands, we may, at least, call our island-home a Goshen. Let these boast their balmy air, and richer fruits, and sunnier skies! In our religious as well as civil advantages, we enjoy blessings that more than compensate for the gloomy fogs that veil these skies, and the storms that rage on our iron-bound shores. Our lines have fallen in pleasant places, and happy the land, nor to be rashly left, where the light of divine truth streams from a thousand printing-presses, and the candle of the Lord shines bright in its humblest cottages. May I not say that, with their multitude of churches, our cities are illuminated every Sabbath, to celebrate the triumphs of the cross, the great battle that was won on the heights of Calvary, and the peace his heralds proclaim between God and man? Men do perish, yet none need perish. There is no lack of knowledge. The road to heaven is plain. “ The wayfaring man, though a fool, shall not err therein." It is better lighted than any street of this city, or the rugged coasts along which our seamen steer, or the harbours which, over surf-beaten bars, they boldly take in winter's blackest night.
Notwithstanding the fulness of our light, what multitudes are wrecked and perish! They never reach the harbour,---nor, arriving in heaven, get home! And I am bound to tell you that, unless He, who gave sight to the blind, apply his finger, and touch your eyes with "eye-salve," their fate shall be yours. What though light streams on our eye-balls? We are in darkness till we are converted; because we are blind, and that not by accident, but by nature, -born blind. There are animals, both wild and domestic, which, by a strange and mysterious law of providence, are born in that state. Having eyes, they see not.” Apparently unripe for the birth, they leave their mother's womb to pass the first period of their being utterly sightless. But, when some ten days have come and gone, time unseals their eyelids, and they are delivered from the power of darkness. But not ten days, nor years, nor any length of time, will do us such friendly office. Not that we shall be always blind. Oh, how men shall see, and regret in another world, the folly they were guilty of in this ! Eternity opens the darkest eyes, but opens them, alas, too late ; “He lift up his eyes, being in torment.” He is a madman who braves that fate; yet it awaits you, unless you bestir yourselves, and, shaking sloth away, seize the golden opportunity to pursue the Saviour with the blind man's cry,“ Thou Son of David, have mercy on me !"
I can fancy few sadder sights than an entire family, parents and children, all blind—a home, where the flowers have no beauty, the night has no stars, the morning no blushing dawn, and the azure sky no glorious sun-a home, where they have never looked on each other's faces; but a blind father sits by the dull fire with a blind boy on his knee, and the sightless mother nurses at her bosom a sightless babe, that never gladdened her with its happy smile. How would such a spectacle touch the most callous feelings, and move to pity even a heart of stone! But a greater calamity is ours. The eyes of our understanding are darkened. Sin quenched man's sight in Eden; and, strange result! the event that revealed their nakedness to our first parents, shut, closed, sealed their eyes, and those also of their children, to the greater shame of spiritual nakedness. Thus blind to their blindness, and insensible of their need of Jesus, alas ! how many allow him to pass by! The precious opportunity of salvation is lost—lost perhaps for ever. Oh, for one hour of the sense and energy of the beggars that sat by the gate of Jericho! Stumbling, often falling, but always to rise, they hung on the skirts of the crowd, plunged headlong into the thick of it, and, elbowing men aside, pursued Jesus with the most plaintive, pitiful, and earnest prayer, “ Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou Son of David! Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou Son of David !” Be yours that cry. Follow your Saviour on their feet; hang on him with the vehemence of one who said, “My soul followeth hard after thee."
” Be turned by nothing from your purpose; but keep following, and, as you follow, crying ; and I promise you that that cry will stop him as sure as Joshua's pierced the heavens, and stopped the glowing axles of
That we may have a deep, and by God's blessing a saving, impression of our need of salvation, let us look at some aspects of our state by nature in the light, if I may say so, of its darkness.
1. Darkness is a state of indolence.
Night is the proper period for rest. When-emblem of a Christian at his evening prayers—the lark sings in the close of day, and leaves the skies to drop
into her dewy nest; when from distant uplands, the rooks, a noisy crowd, come sailing, wheeling home; when the flowers shut their beautiful eyes; when the sun, retiring within the cloudy curtains of the evening, sinks into his ocean-bed-nature, however some may neglect her lessons, teaches man to seek repose. So, with some exceptions, all honest men and women go to sleep in the dark. They that sleep, sleep in the night;" and this busy world lies hushed in the arms of slumber, till morning, looking in at the window, calls up toil to resume her labours. And thus, when we have been summoned at midnight to a bed of death, how loud the foot-fall sounded in the empty thoroughfare! With thousands around who gave no sign of life, with none abroad but prowling dog or houseless outcast or some guilty wretch, with the tall grim tenements wrapped in gloom, save where student's lamp, or the faint light of a sick chamber glimmered dim and drear, we have felt such awe as he might do who walks through a city of the dead. Yet, in its hours of deepest darkness and quietest repose, this city presents no true picture of our state by nature. it yonder where a city sleeps, while eager angels point Lot's eyes to the break of day, and urge his tardy steps through the doomed streets of Sodom. firmament hangs over all the unconverted; and there is need that God send his grace to do them an angel's office, saving them from impending judgments. Are you still exposed to the wrath of God? Rouse thee, then, from sleep, shake off thy indolence, and leap from