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and medicine for future disease; give opportunity to talents, and scope to goodness; go among the multitude, and see if you can drag from the oblivious heap some child of God, some gift of heaven, whose mind can burst through the secrets of nature, and influence the destiny of man. This is the dignified and religious use of riches, which, when they cherish boyish pride, to minister to selfish pleasure, shall verily doom their possessor to the flames of hell. But he who knows wherefore God has given him great possessions, he shall die the death of Lazarus, without leading his life, and rest in the bosom of Abraham, though he never stretched forth his wounds to the dogs, nor gathered up the crumbs of the table for his food.
The best mode of guarding against that indirect flattery, which is always paid to wealth, is to impress the mind with a thorough belief of the fact; and to guard, by increased inward humility, against the danger of corruption from without. The wealthy man who attributes to himself great or good qualities, from what he conceives to be the opinion of the world, exposes himself to dangerous errors; on the most important of all subjects, this source of selfjudgment is for him most effectually poisoned; he must receive such evidence with the utmost distrust, weigh every circumstance with caution, court animadversion and friendly candour, and cherish the man by whose polished justice his feelings are consulted, while his follies are repressed.
For the pride which is contracted by the contemplation of little things, there is no better cure than the contemplation of great things. Let a rich man turn from his own pompous littleness, and think of heaven, of eternity, and of salvation; let him think of all the nations that lie dead in the dust, waiting for the trumpet of God; he will smile at his own brief authority, and be as one lifted up to a high eminence, to whom the gorgeous palaces of the world are the specks and atoms of the eye; the great laws of nature pursue their eternal course, and heed not the frail distinctions of this life; the fever spares not the rich and the great; the tempest does not pass by them; they are racked by pain, they are weakened by disease, they are broken by old age, they are agonized in death like other men, they moulder in the tomb, they differ only from other men in this, that God will call them to a more severe account, that they must come before him with deeds of Christian
charity and acts of righteousness, equal to all the opportunities and blessings which they have enjoyed.
Let the rich man, then, remember, in the midst of his enjoyments, by what slight tenure those enjoyments are held. In addition to the common doubt which hangs over the life of all men, fresh perils lie hid in his pleasures, and the very object for which he lives may be the first to terminate his existence. "Remember thou art mortal," was said every day to a great king. So, after the same fashion, I would that a man of great possessions should frequently remember the end of all things, and the long home, and the sleeping-place of a span in breadth; I would have him go from under the gilded dome down to the place where they will gather him to the bones of his fathers; he should tread in the dust of the noble, and trample on the ashes of the proud; I would heap before him sights of woe and images of death and terror; I would break down his stateliness, and humble him before his Redeemer and his Judge. My voice should ever sound in his ears, that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for & rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven.
TRIBUTE TO SIR SAMUEL ROMILLY.*
AND let me ask you, my brethren, we who see the good and great daily perishing before our eyes, what comfort have we but this hope in Christ that we shall meet again? Remember the eminent men who, within the few years last past, have paid the great debt of nature. The earth stripped of its moral grandeur, sunk in its spiritual pride. The melancholy wreck of talents and of wisdom gone, my brethren, when we feel how dear, how valuable they were to us, when we would have asked of God, on our bended knees, their preservation and their life. Can we live with all that is excellent in human nature, can we study it, can we contemplate it, and then lose it, and never hope to see it again?
Can we say of any human being, as we may say of that great man who was torn from us in the beginning of this winter, that he acted with vast capacity upon all the great calamities of life; that he came with unblemished purity to restrain iniquity; that, con
From a sermon on Meditation on Death. Romilly, in a fit of temporary insanity, brought on by grief for the death of his wife, committed suicide, November 2, 1818.
demning injustice, he was just; that, restraining corruption, he was pure; that those who were provoked to look into the life of a great statesman, found him a good man also, and acknowledged he was sincere, even when they did not believe he was right? Can we say of such a man, with all the career of worldly ambition before him, that he was the friend of the wretched and the poor; that in the midst of vast occupation, he remembered the debtor's cell, the prisoner's dungeon, the last hour of the law's victim; that he meditated day and night on wretchedness, weakness, and want? Can we say all this of any human being, and then have him no more in remembrance? When you "die daily," my brethren; when you remember my text, paint to yourselves the gathering together again of the good and the just.
Remember that God is to be worshipped, that death is to be met, by such a life as this; remember, in the last hour, that rank, that birth, that wealth, that all earthly things will vanish away, that you will then think only of the wretchedness you have lessened and the good you have done.
FIRST and foremost, I think the new Queen should bend her mind to the very serious consideration of educating the people. Of the importance of this, I think no reasonable doubt can exist; it does not, in its effects, keep pace with the exaggerated expectations of its injudicious advocates, but it presents the best chance of national improvement.
Reading and writing are mere increase of power. They may be turned, I admit, to a good or a bad purpose; but for several years of his life the child is in your hands, and you may give to that power what bias you please: thou shalt not kill—thou shalt not steal thou shalt not bear false witness;s;-by how many fables, by how much poetry, by how many beautiful aids of imagination, may not the fine morality of the sacred Scriptures be engraven on the minds of the young? I believe the arm of the assassin may be often stayed by the lessons of his early life. When I see the * This and the succeeding passage are from a sermon, preached at St. Paul's on the accession of Victoria, on the Duties of the Queen text, Dan. iv. 31: "Oh king, thy kingdom is departed from thee."
village-school, and the tattered scholars, and the aged master or mistress teaching the mechanical art of reading or writing, and thinking that they are teaching that alone, I feel that the aged instructor is protecting life, insuring property, fencing the altar, guarding the throne, giving space and liberty to all the fine powers of man, and lifting him up to his own place in the order of creation.
There are, I am sorry to say, many countries in Europe, which have taken the lead of England in the great business of education, and it is a thoroughly commendable and legitimate object of ambition in a sovereign to overtake them. The names, too, of malefactors, and the nature of their crimes, are subjected to the sovereign; how is it possible that a sovereign, with the fine feelings of youth, and with all the gentleness of her sex, should not ask herself, whether the human being whom she dooms to death, or at least does not rescue from death, has been properly warned in early youth, of the horrors of that crime for which his life is forfeited?" Did he ever receive any education at all?-did a father and mother watch over him?. was he brought to places of worship?—was the Word of God explained to him?—was the book of knowledge opened to him?—Or am I, the fountain of mercy, the nursing-mother of my people, to send a forsaken wretch from the streets to the scaffold, and to prevent, by unprincipled cruelty, the evils of unprincipled neglect ?"
Many of the objections found against the general education of the people are utterly untenable; where all are educated, education cannot be a source of distinction and a subject for pride. The great source of labour is want; and as long as the necessities of life call for labour-labour is sure to be supplied. All these fears are foolish and imaginary; the great use and the great importance of education properly conducted, are, that it creates a great bias in favour of virtue and religion, at a period of life when the mind is open to all the impressions which superior wisdom may choose to affix upon it; the sum and mass of these tendencies and inclinations make a good and virtuous people, and draw down upon us the blessing and protection of Almighty God.
A SECOND great object which I hope will be impressed upon the mind of this royal lady is, a rooted horror of war—an earnest and passionate desire to keep her people in a state of profound peace. The greatest curse which can be entailed upon mankind is a state of war. All the atrocious crimes committed in years of peace-all that is spent in peace by the secret corruptions, or by the thoughtless extravagance of nations, are mere trifles compared with the gigantic evils which stalk over the world in a state of war, God is forgotten in war-every principle of Christian charity trampled upon-human labour destroyed-human industry extinguished; — you see the son, and the husband, and the brother, dying miserably in distant lands-you see the waste of human affections—you see the breaking of human hearts-you hear the shrieks of widows and children after the battle-and you walk over the mangled bodies of the wounded calling for death. I would say to that royal child, worship God, by loving peace-it is not your humanity to pity a beggar by giving him food and raiment — I can do that; that is the charity of the humble, and the unknown -widen you your heart for the more expanded miseries of mankind-pity the mothers of the peasantry, who see their sons torn away from their families-pity your poor subjects crowded into hospitals, and calling in their last breath, upon their distant country and their young queen-pity the stupid, frantic folly of human beings, who are always ready to tear each other to pieces, and to deluge the earth with each other's blood; this is your extended humanity—and this the great field of your compassion. Extinguish in your heart the fiendish love of military glory, from which your sex does not necessarily exempt you, and to which the wickedness of flatterers may urge you. Say upon your death-bed, “I have made few orphans in my reign-I have made few widows— my object has been peace. I have used all the weight of my character, and all the power of my situation, to check the irascible passions of mankind, and to turn them to the arts of honest industry: this has been the Christianity of my throne, and this the Gospel of my sceptre; in this way I have striven to worship my Redeemer and my Judge."
I would add (if any addition were wanted as a part of the lesson