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and come away.” Rise up from thy wintry state my


one, rise

up in thy beauty and come away with me. Now, what reason does He assign for this? Well, this is the reason. lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone." The storms and the tempests are now passed away.

“ The flowers appear on the earth.” These flowers are the beautiful fruits of the Spirit. time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell.”. Now, delivered from the storms and the tempests, “the voice of the turtle,"—the Holy Ghost,—is heard in this bit of land—the regenerate heart of man. How sweet is the voice of this heavenly dove when He speaks joy and peace to the heart.

" The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape

give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

Now, this shews us that there is a spring season, and it is a very happy time for such as love God, because they feel that after all the Lord has carried them through and brought them hitherto. And shall not He who has done this for them in the most trying season take care of them in all the rest ? My brethren, not one of the promises which our God has made shall fail. He will take care of His people for they are a cultivated field and an orchard of pomegranates. We like to be living in the spring time or in the summer season of which I am now about to speak to you.

What about the summer season ? Now, the Lord has said that “While the earth remaineth, seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” As in nature, so in grace.

The Church of God has her winter, spring, summer, and autumn. Oh! what a monotony there would be were it not for the change of seasons. We should get tired of our finest spring, summer, or autumn. However, the summer season is the time, I suppose, when the fruits of the earth are maturing and growing to perfection in order that they may be gathered in due season. So it is with God's child when he is being filled with the spirit of God; his faith growing exceedingly, his peace flowing like a river, and his heart full of the love of God. He is maturing and ripening for the harvest. Oh! what a cheerful and glorious time is this summer season! Yes, indeed, but Christians are just like the flower which opens and closes to the sun. I say opens and closes to the sun, for if the sun ceases to shine on the flower, and a cloud comes in between, then the flower closes. Just so it is with Christians. When the Sun of Righteousness shines upon

thein in all His glory and blessedness, then they open to Him. When He withdraws His shining, or a cloud comes in between, then they close. A Christian man's heart opens and closes in proportion as the Sun shines upon it. When he feels the influence of the Sun of Righteousness, and basks in the sunshine of God's presence, he is like Peter, he wants to make tabernacles, as though it would be the best to remain there always. The overshadowing cloud soon puts an end to this folly. It is like an eclipse in summer.

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A short time ago I read an account of a total eclipse, which occurred in the summer of 1842, in France. This eclipse was witnessed by about 20,000 men, most of them were soldiers. They were placed ready so as to observe the first approach of the eclipse. As soon as the moon appeared to touch the sun the people were observed to give a gi shout, for some of them had never seen an eclipse before. Slowly the moon crept over the

sun, and the noise and chatter and talk of the witnesses gradually subsided. When the sun was totally eclipsed, nothing was heard but the wail which died away to be succeeded by perfect silence. Not a voice could be heard, the birds were dumb, the dog dropped its bone, and the ant forsook its burden. All nature was hushed into silence.

The only sound that could be heard was the beat of a chronometer. Need I remark upon the practical bearing of this total eclipse upon the subject under consideration. This total eclipse was in the midst of summer.

Have God's children ever an experience answering to this?

I think so. When the Sun of Righteousness is suddenly overshadowed then they are in darkness and soon hushed into perfect silence. This is silence in Heaven—in the church. I think I understand the Psalmist when he said, “I was dumb, I opened not my mouth, because Thou didst it.” A sudden and total eclipse of the soul, even in the midst of the summer season, may come over a Christian ; and it may

l last longer than the eclipse which the 20,000 men beheld. That lasted but two minutes and a half, and when that was over the 20,000 men burst into exclamations of joy. But, frequently the eclipse of the soul is of longer duration,-more than two and a half minutes, more than two and a half days. But mark this : behind the overshadowing cloud there is still the Sun of Righteousness Who shall arise and shine, dispersing the clouds and bringing healing in His wings. When He bursts into our hearts afresh then we praise the Lord and magnify His holy name. The thick darkness is past, the eclipse is over and gone. We shall praise Him all the more for having delivered us, not only in the winter, and in the spring, and even now, out of that great eclipse in the midst of the

This is God's grand preparation for the in-gathering of His harvest which will be gathered in by our God Himself.

Now, to the last point. The harvest time has arrived. Sometimes we have very trying weather in harvest ; this makes the gathering of the crops difficult and precarious. Still the fruits are gathered in due

So it is with many a child of God. He is put to bed, as it were, in the dark. Gathered in rough weather. What? does the child of God laugh and sing then ? No, he has no joy in harvest. When thou walkest throught he valley of the shadow of death thou shalt fear no evil, for Jehovah will be with thee. Then, although this tried child of God goes, as it were, in the dark to glory, yet the Lord is with him. He has been with him through every season of storm and sunshine, and leaves not his soul at last to sink in despair or to fail of glory.

We have another case, it is the Christian gathered to glory in fine weather. He enters Heaven triumphantly. He now rejoices that he knows that Christ's blood has cleansed him from every sin, that he is

summer season.


clothed in His righteousness, that he is “ Complete in Him,” and that bye-and-bye “he shall see Him face to face.” Though he now sees Him through a glass darkly, but shortly he shall see Him as He is, and when he sees Him as He is he shall praise Him as he ought.

Many are ready to record triumphant deaths; but why not record the trials, and the sorrows, and the dark days, and the troubles, and the gathering in of God's children in dark and gloomy seasons ? Why not record the one as much as the other ? It would afford comfort to many of God's dear children. Brethren in the Lord, ye are God's husbandry.

Jesus says, my Father is the husbandman. God's children feel that He takes care of them. He will take care of the whole field.

I will keep it day and night, and water it every moment. He will preserve it from all evil. O God, crown the year of Thy heavenly husbandry with Thy Goodness, and so will we render unto Thee the praise of our hearts through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen, and Amen.

He says:

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