the praise of men to the testimony of a good conscience, but trembles to think of purchasing the one with the loss of ihe other. It generally happens, in this case, as it did to Solomon in another. Young men who pursue virtile on its own account, and ask wisdom of God in the first place, certainly obtain what they seek and pray for, and they also obtain what they neither asked nor sought; the love of their fellow-creatures: the favour of man comes unsolicited to him, while he was pursuing a much higher object, peace with God, and peace with himself; while he who aimed at the inferiour object alone, misses even that little, and thus becomes poor indeed. The foundation of Samuel's future eminence and usefulness, was thus laid in the early and tender care of a wise and pious mother. The youth had never been respected in the temple, had never been the object of general favour abroad, had the child learned to be froward, petulant or peevish in his father's house. O woman, would you have the world to think of your darling son as you do, put yourself betimes in the place of an unconcerned spectator, view him as an entire stranger would do, and let discretion regulate the overflowings of your heart. Ah, had Hannah favoured her child more, Israel had favoured him less! How ample and how sweet, even in this world, are the rewards of selfgovernment, of self-denial, of moderation ! Men literally, in miny instances, enjoy what they reject, and lose what they gain. IIe who lendeth to the Lord, lays out his property on the best security, and to the greatest advantage. Samuel is infinitely more his mother's at Shiloh than at Ramah; his worth is multiplied in proportion as it is communicated, and enriches the public fund without impoverishing the private stock. The eyes of a whole people are already to him, the expectation of man keeps pace with the destination of Providence; and the child, ministering in a linen ephod, becomes more gracious, from comparison with the polluted ministrations of ungracious and ungodly men.

Observe, thirdly, Youth's highest praise, the most glorious reward of goodness, the happiest effect of good education, Samuel was "in favour with God." To obtain this most honourable distinction, much more was requisite than a regular and modest deportment, much more than promising talents and childish innocence, and the other qualities which attract and captivate the eyes of men. The love of God has been betimes shed abroad in that heart; Hannah has been mindful of her vow, and taught her son to remember bis Creator in the days of his youth; and how grateful is early piety to Him who saith, “ My son, give me thine heart !” Lo, God has impressed his own image on that tender mind, and sees, and loves, and approves his own work. The great Jehovah has designed this wonderful child for high things, from the very womb, has raised him up to be the “rising again of many in Israel,” to purify a polluted church, to save a sinking state, and is fitting him, from the cradle, for his high destination.

The eye of the Lord observes with delight the progress of this plant of renown. He is hastening his own work in righteousness, is ready to perfect, by heavenly visions, the instructions of a pious mother, is preparing to crown the gracious with more grace. The favour of man is frequently the child of ignorance or caprice. They love and hate they know not why. Sometimes they hate where they ought to love, and love where they ought to hate ; but the favour of God is ever founded in knowledge, is undirected by partial aflection or personal regards, is the result of reason, the applause which perfect wisdom bestows on distinguished excellence. Samuel must have merited praise, else this praise had not been conferred on him. And singular must that merit have been, which could unite judgements so different, interests which so frequently clash. He who makes it his study to please man, can hardly be the servant of God; and to aim at pleasing God is pot always the Vol. vi.


road to the favour of men. Nothing but genuine, unaffected goodness could have procured this joint approbation of God and man; and there is a charm in true goodness, which is irresistible. It may be overlooked for a season, it may be borne down, it may be obscured, it may be misrepresented, it may be hated and opposed; but it will prevail at length, will force itself into notice, will arise and shine, will command respect, silence envy, triumph over opposition ; rejoice the wise and good, and keep the wicked in awe.

What mode of address shall I employ, to engage, for a moment, the attention of young ones; and to impress upon their hearts the importance of my subject? Would to God I could again become a little child, that, with the lessons of experience, I might regulate my own future conduct, and be an useful monitor to the simple and inexperienced. I would in that case say, My little friend, God and nature have made you lovely. The candour, and frankness, and benevolence of your heart shine upon your countenance. Every day discloses some new grace. You are increasing in stature : you are growing in favour with all who behold you. Every one thinks well, speaks well, hopes well of you. Grow on. Preserve that amiable simplicity. Let it be the charm of advancing years, of expanding faculties. Let that blooming face be still raised to Heaven with modest confidence; and those gracious eyes still beam goodwill to men. May I never see that open forehead clouded and contracted. What, shall the horrid traces of vice disfigure that form ? Shall every one that passeth by be constrained to turn away with loathing and aversion? Shall the mother who bare thee, have her face covered with a blush when thou art named ? Must she be made to mourn the day which was once her joy? Angels will behold your progress with delight; they will rejoice in ministering unto you: they are ready to receive you into their number, when your course is finished. God himself regards you with smiles of complacency; he is ever ready to assist, to counsel, to protect, to receive you. Let there be joy in heaven concerning you. Now, now is the season for laying the foundation of useful life, respectable age, comfortable death.

- But what do I see? That youthful face already degraded by vice! so young, and so horrid! Unhappy youth, the depravity of thy heart is painted on thy forehead. The sight of thy own countenance filleth thee with horror. Shame and remorse are preying on the marrow in thy bones. In the hours of solitude and retirement, stretched on thy bed to which sleep is a stranger, thou art constrained to reflect on the wretchedness of thy condition; thou feelest thyself unworthy of the praises bestowed upon thee, by the partiality of those who know thee not; thou blushest in secret, and art filled with indignation against thyself, on calling to remembrance the innocence and simplicity of happier days. Thou givest up thyself as lost. No, young man, do not abandon thyself to despair : add not this to thy offences; there is help for thee, let it reanimate thy courage. Though “cast down," thou art "not destroyed.” However debased that face, it is in thy power to amend, to ennoble it. Thou wert not destined always to remain an innocent child, nor couldest thou : by stumbling and falling thou wert to be instructed how to walk and run. Wert thou wounded and bruised ; wert thou plunged into the abyss? There is an arm nigh thce, which is able to raise thee up, to strengthen and to heal thee. Multitudes like thyself have been recovered, restored, established. “ As a father pitieth his children, so the Lord” will have mercy upon thee, and forgive, and receive thee. The impure, the profane, the blasphemer, the chief of sinncrs, have repented, have returned, have found favour; there is hope also concerning thee. Only for the Lord's sake, and for thy soul's sake, proceed no farther, persevere no longer in an evil course. One step forward may be fatal; to-morrow may find thee in the place where there is no hope. “Behold now is the accepted time, behoid now is the day

of salvation." " Seek the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near.” “The wind is boisterous," the sea rages, thou art “ beginning to sink,” thou art ready to perish; but shalt not, whilst thou art able to esclaim, " Lord save me:" for behold " a very present help in trouble ;" that helping hand which snatched Peter from the roaring gulf. “And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand and caught him, and said unto him, 0 thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt ?"*

-I conclude with calling upon parents, and guardians, and instructers of youth, seriously to consider the importance of the trust committed unto them; and to discharge it under a sense of responsibility to God, to their pupils, to their country. The history under review presses one point upon you, as of singular moment, and closely connected with every article of education and consequent improvement; I mean the study of the happy, but difficult medium, between excessive indulgence, and oppressive severity. The steady firmness of Hannah, the mother of Samuel, furnishes an useful example. If ever there was a child in danger of being corrupted by indulgence, it was he. But no symptom of it appears. He is treated as a mere ordinary lad, and from his earliest years, to old age, evinces, by his conduct, the excellence of the precepts, and the steadiness of the discipline which formed his character, and laid the foundation of his eminence. He leaves home, and parts with his parents, while yet a child, with manly fortitude. Already under habits of submission to parental authority, he cheerfully transfers that submission to a stranger, to Eli. Untainted by imaginary terrors, the darkness of the night, the solemnity of the house of the Lord, silence and solitude, and sleep disturbed by extraordinary and unseasonable voices, excite in him no silly apprehension, draw from him no childish complaint, deter him from the performance of no duty. In all this we cannot but recognize the wisdom, the constancy, the fortitude of his excellent mother. Had she been foolishly fond, he had been peevish, and petulant, and timid, and discontented. Take a lesson from her, ye mothers of young children. If you would have these children happy, they must betimes be inured to subjection, to privation, to restraint. To multiply their desires by unbounded gratification, is the sure way to multiply their future pains and mortifications. Reduce their wants and wishes to the standard of nature, and you proportionably enlarge their sphere of enjoyment. Let them contract no fear but that of offending God, and of committing sin. Let them learn to consider all places, all seasons, all situations as equal, when duty calls. Impress on their opening minds the two great precepts on which“ bang all the law and the prophets,” to love the Lord their God, and their fellow-creatures. Lead their infant steps to the Friend of little children, to the Saviour of mankind; to the knowledge, the belief, the love, the hope, the consolations of the gospel, and thereby preserve them “ from paths wherein destroyers go.

The profligate character and untimely end of Eli's sons, on the other hand, afford a solemn admonition of the inevitably ruinous effects of unbounded indulgence to the passions and caprices of youth. Had they been early habituated to the wholesome restraints of piety, decency and justice, they could not have become thus criminal, nor would have perished thus miserably. In the excesses which they committed, we clearly see the relaxed government, the careless inspection, the unbounded licentiousness of their father's house. Neglect, in this case, occasioned the mischief. And the neglected field will soon be overrun with noxious weeds, though you sow, designedly, no poison in it. Fathers, see to it that your instructions be sound, that your deportment be regular, that your discipline be exact. Account nothing unimportant that

* Mat. xiv. 31.

affects the moral and religious character of your son. Precept will go so far, example will go farther ; but authority must support and enforce both the one and the other. You cannot, indeed, communicate the spirit of grace, but you can certainly form youth to habits of decency and order : and habitual decency is nearly allied to virtue, and may imperceptibly improve into it. Do your parl, and then you may with confidence “cast all your care" on God.

May it not be necessary to throw in a short word of caution against the opposte extreme, that of excessive severity to offending youth? This indeed is not so common as corruptive indulgence; but this too exists. How many promising young men have been forced into a continuance in an evil course, have been driven to desperation, have become “ hardened through the deceitfulness of sin,” because the first deviation could find no mercy, because a father armed himself with inflexible, unrelenting sternness, for a slighter of fence ? Alas, how many amiable, excellent, promising young women have bren lost to God, 10 their families, to society ; have been dragged into the jaws of prostitution, and infamy, and disease, and premature death, because a father's door was shut, and a mother's heart hardened against the penitent: because her native refuge was no refuge to the miserable ? She returned to her own, but her own received her not. Instances, however, might be produced of wiser conduct, and happier consequences ; of mercy extended, and thie wanderer reclaimed; of human parents working together with "the Fatlier of inrcies," and succeeding in rekindling the sacred flame of virtue, in restoring peace to the troubled breast, in recovering the fallen, to reputation, to piery, to comfort, to usefulness. So long as God " waiteth to be gracious," surely it well beconies man to " put on bowels of mercies, kindness, meekness, longsuffering, forbearance, forgiveness, and charity, which is the bond of perli'ctness.”

Tous have I finished what I proposed, in attempting to delineate the female character, by instances taken from the sacred record. In these, and in the case of every virtuous woman, we see the great Creator's design fully justified, in inaking for man “an help meet for him." That which is necessary cannot be despised ; that which is useful ought to be valued ; that wbicb is excllent commands respect ; that which is improveable calls for cultivation. Bad men only revile and undervalue the other sex: the weak and ignorant idolize and worship it. The man of sense and virtue considers woman as his equal, his companion, his friend, and treats her accordingly; for friendship excludes equally invective and flattery. In the education and treatment of females, too much attention has, perhaps, been paid to sex. Why should they be forever reminded that they are females, while it is of so much more importance to impress upon their minds, that they are reasonable beings, endowed with human faculties, faculties capable of perversion or of improvement, and that they are accountable to God for them? Wherefore obstruct to them one path to useful knowledge, one source of rational improvement, or of harmless enjoyment ? If they are despised they will become despicable. Treated either as slaves or as angels, they cease to be companions. Prize them and they will become estimable; call forth their intellectual powers, and the empire of science will be extended and improved.

And let them learn wherein their real value, importance, and respectability consist. Not in receiving homage, but in meriting approbation ; not in shine ing, but in useful employment; not in public eminence, but in domestic dig. nity ; in acquiring and maintaining influence, not by pretension, vehemence or trick, which are easily seen through, and always fail, but by good tepper, perseverance in well-doing, and the practice of unfeigned piety.







Scots Church, London=lVall.


The Third American Edition.


.. VOL. VII.

Jesus said unto them, verily, verily, I say unto you, before Abraham was, I am.

John viii: 58.

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was.

and which is to come, the Almighty.- REVELATION i. 8.



New-York; TOWAR & HOGAN, JOHN GRIGG, Philadelphia.



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