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“ Your uncle," said Mr. Perkins," is a wise man in bus way, and wishes to do good to all around him, and he has taken a prudent way to impress a very useful lesson on your minds, but the worst of it is that his good lessons are not pushed far enough; he is satisfied with our helping one another through this world, without helping one another on a way to a better.
“ This lesson of helping one another is a truly Christian lesson that we all ought to put in practice every day of our lives. Think, my dear children, of the difference between our hindering those around us in Divine things and our helping them.
Si When we read God's holy word together with reverence, we help each other; when we pray together to our heavenly Father, in the name of that Saviour who died on the cross for sinners, we help each other; when we encourage each other in the faith of Jesus Christ, and him crucified, we help each other. While, then, you bear in mind the lesson so kindly and prudently taught you by your uncle, try to make the very best of it, by helping one another, not for time only, but for eternity.
“ If we would really help one another, we must ourselves seek help from our heavenly Father. Let us, therefore, come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need,” Heb. iv. 16.
John and Henry Perkins never forgot the lesson taught them by their uncle Edward, nor the advice of their father to apply it, not to things temporal only, but to those that are eternal.
DREADFUL INSANITY. “ MADNESS," says the wisest of men, is in their hearts while they live. This is a very serious allegation. It is brought, too, against all sinners. They are accused of madness, and this during their entire lives. Of its truth there can be no doubt, for it is the word of Divine inspiration.
What are the symptoms?
When men become physically and mentally deranged, they become wild, irregular, and reckless of their best interests. The symptoms of moral insanity are.equally well defined. What are the true interests of man? Why, if there be an Almighty Jehovah, who hates sin, and will and must inevitably punish it with endless destruction, and who loves holiness, and
will reward it with everlasting bliss ; if this life be emphatically a vapour, and yet the only probation, then the great business of life is to be living so as to please God. His favour should be the unremitting study of man. But what is the truth? The vast proportion of mankind, even in Christendom, live as if the idea of a God were a fiction, and death an eternal sleep. Would it be madness in a person to abandon everything that was endearing in a loved home, to wander among outcasts in rags and destitution? What sort of madness, then, is that which sacrifices two worlds, barters heaven, and throws eternity away?
Another symptom is this :-Insane persons usually imagine everybody else deranged but themselves. “ Paul, thou art beside thyself; much learning doth make thee mad," was the accusation of an ancient sinner. But the truth was all the
“ I am not mad,” said the holy apostle, “ but speak forth the words of truth and soberness.”
Paul was sober, while Festus was in reality insane. A principle of universal application is here developed. Sinners vainly imagine that persons who are devotedly pious, who become singular on account of their religion, are fanatics. They accuse them of being excitable, partially deranged, or of having lost the balance of their minds; but the truth is, they themselves are actually giddy with the enchanting delusions of the world, they are delirious with worldly success and worldly hopes.
Insane persons often refuse all remedies.-Christ, the Great Physician, " was despised and rejected of men.” They have “ counted his blood,” which was the only remedy for guilt, " an unholy thing."
For eighteen centuries efforts have been made sufficient to have converted the world a.thousand times, if men had gladly received the gospel. The cup of salvation is presented to them with all that winning compassion and condescension of which a merciful God and a benignant Saviour are capable ; but they dash it to the ground, they spurn the offers of mercy, they madly rush into the jaws of death!
Deranged persons usually imagine their best friends their worst enemies.—Under the influence of this delusion, they will often murder their wives, their children, and their greatest benefactors. The Saviour of mankind was the sincerest friend and the greatest benefactor the world ever saw. He was the personification of infinite virtue and benevolence; and yet he was murdered by those very persons he came to bless
and save. Wherever his genuine spirit has been imbibed and reflected by his disciples, they have been treated in a similar
Millions of the best and holiest men, of the greatest friends and benefactors of the human species, have been hated, persecuted, exiled, imprisoned, or murdered. And for what? Simply for using their best endeavours to save men from impending destruction. Were you to lay hold of a man asleep in a burning dwelling, and rescue him from the devouring element, and should he then turn upon you, abuse you, beat you, and seek to kill you, would you not pronounce him insane? What, then, is to be thought of sinners who hate and often seek to murder those who are striving to rescue them from the eternal flames that are kindling about them? There is no hyperbole in the declaration of the inspired writer, “ madness is in their hearts."
Insane persons frequently destroy themselves. Sinners not merely reject all efforts to save them from death, but so intent are they upon self-destruction, that in multitudes of cases they cut short their lives. The deadliest poisons are administered for this purpose; duels, wars, and fightings are sought with avidity; fevers, consumptions, palsies, and other messengers of death are encouraged and invited, by intemperance and otherwise, to perform their office. Such fearful anxiety have they manifested, lest they should not secure their eternal self-destruction, that they do not suffer themselves to live out half their days.
Such, then, is the condition of mankind, such'is the state of this world. It is a true representation; it is not in the least overdrawn. In this view of the subject the world may be regarded as one vast insane hospital. It is filled with inmates who exhibit every shade of moral obliquity and spiritual delirium. Many have been restored ; some partially, others entirely.
There is a very simple remedy for this madness : it is the blood of Christ. This is the only remedy.-- Without the shedding of blood there is no remission.”- 26 Neither is there salvation in any other.” It is infallible.—“The blood of Christ cleanseth from all sin." Universal." He tasted death for every man.”
It is free - without money and without price."
The first lucid interval in the sinner's life is when he begins to see his guilt, and to feel that he is lost, ruined, wretched, and exposed to imminent peril; when he resolves, in his hopelessness and helplessness, to go, with all his sins
and cares, to Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, and cast himself upon
mercy.. The prodigal son is an illustration of the penitent sinner ; “ He came to himself. During his whole life, previous to this, he had been beside himself. The first lucid interval was when he made the resolve, “ I will arise, and go to my father.”
Reader, if you are yet unconverted, your whole life has been one of extreme madness. You may doubt, but be assured the light of eternity will discover it to you as a solemn truth. Will you make use of the only remedy? Will you be restored? The blood of Christ possesses power and efficacy, of which you have no conception. The most desperate cases have been cured. “He that believeth, though he were dead, yet shall he live.”
CHRISTIAN SCRIVER'S THOUGHTS.
A. RICH merchant who had received a sum of money, threw one ducat after another into a scale to ascertain whether it were full weight.
Gotthold, on seeing this, observed, “ I should fear the ducats would be too heavy."
6 How so?” said the merchant. “ Would you not,” replied Gotthold, “ consider that money too heavy on which hang the sweat and blood of the simple and hard-working, the tears of the poor, the widow, and the orphan, or the curses of the offended and deceived? I will not suppose, or rather I will not fear, that money so weighty and oppressive is to be found in this sum of yours; but do not take it amiss that I express the wish that your conscience may at all times be the balance in which you weigh every ducat and dollar you receive, in order to discover whether you
have obtained it honestly or not. Many there are, who only in the agonies of death perceive how difficult it is for a soul burdened with ill-gotten gain to pass through the narrow gate that leads unto life. Take heed, therefore, that your heart be not so burdened. The greater the load a man has to carry, the more must he tire and stumble in ascending a hill. On their deathbed those suffer most whose consciences are most heavily laden with fraud and dishonesty.
“Keep me, O God, from possessions on which hang the tears, sighs, or curses of the wronged. Better no possessions than such as these." - From the German.
PARENTAL EXAMPLE. He who despises his own soul will feel little disposition to attend to the souls of others. Destitute of principle, he will be determined only by circumstances; and his exertions, if he makes any, will be partial and rare. Having nothing to animate him from experience, his endeavours will be dull and cold. Where all is merely formal and official, a man will not go far even in the use of means; but what probability is there of his success, when he does use them? Who loves to take his meat from a leprous hand ? A drunkard will make a poor preacher of sobriety to servants. A proud and passionate father is a wretched recommender of humility and meekness to his children. What those who are under his care see, will more than counteract what they hear; and all his efforts will be rejected with the question, « Thou that teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? Thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal ? Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery?” To what is it owing, that the offspring of many professors are worse than those of other men? Inconsistency. Inconsistency is more injurious than neglect. The one may be resolved into a forgetfulness of principle; the other shows a contempt of it. You little imagine how early and how effectively children remark things. They notice them when they seem incapable of any distinct observation; and while you would suppase no impression could be left on such soft materials, a fixed turn is given to many a part of the future character. You must therefore reverence them, and be circumspect even in your most free and relaxing moments. You must do, as well as teach; and while you are humble before God, you must be able to say to them, “ Be ye followers of me, even as I am of Christ.”
It is commonly observed, that example does more than precept. But the young are peculiarly alive to example; and when example has the advantage of nearness and constant exhibition, and unites both authority and endearment, it must prove the most powerful and insensible transformer ; and quires in those who furnish it, and who will necessarily be imitated, that they “abstain from all appearance of evil.” We only add here, that they who constitute your moral charge, are not so much affected and swayed by any direct and positive urgings, as by the presence, and exemplification, and sight of
whatsoever things are lovely and of good report." The force of the hot-house is not to be compared to the genial