Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

On the Lord's Supper.

99 too often refuses him forgiveness though he fall at his feet to implore it.”

PRAYER.
(By Sir Matthew Hale.)

“It is true, our pardon of others deserves not mercy; but, O bountiful Lord, thou hast been pleased in Christ, in whom all thy promises are yea and amen, by thine own free promise, to engage thyself unto thy creature; that with the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful;' that the merciful shall obtain mercy; that, if we forgive men their trespasses, thou wilt forgive us : and these promises of thine, freely and undeservedly made by thee, I lay before thee, when I beg my pardon in Jesus Christ, thereby to strengthen my soul, in thy goodness, in the free remission of all my sins.”

KIRDFORDIENSIS. (To be continued.)

ON THE LORD'S SUPPER.
(Continued from p. 82, Vol. XI.)

PART IV.
Shewing the benefit to be expected from fulfilling the

command, This do in remembrance of me." We have told you that you ought to obey this commandment, because it is your duty to do so. You may next enquire what benefits you are likely to derive from the right receiving of the Lord's Supper.

In the first place, then, you will be free from the reproaches of your own conscience.

When people neglect this Sacrament, their hearts must misgive them—and their minds must be disturbed when they read of our Lord's instructions respecting it. And when they see others continuing in the church, eager to do all they can in remembrance of their gracious Master, and therefore joining their fellow Christians in eating and drinking the consecrated bread and wine ; then, those who go away from the holy table, and turn their backs on the sacred ordinance, must feel some uneasiness—and they must, if they reflect at all, condemn themselves for thus disobeying their Lord's commands. From this uneasiness, then, and self-condemnation, those are free who regularly partake of the Communion. They have peace of mind in doing what they know to be a positive duty; and though, through their frailty, it may be but imperfectly performed, yet the desire to do right, together with a sincere endeavour to do so, will be the best means of giving peace to the mind and preventing the accusations of conscience.

Peace of mind, however, is not the only benefit which we receive from partaking of the Lord's Supper. Those who partake of it in remembrance of their Master, may well expect his blessing. We can never keep the commandments of God without being the better for it; even though we may not at once be able to see what is the exact good received.

When David spoke of the statutes of the Lord, he says thus: “Moreover by them is thy servant taught, and in keeping of them there is great reward.” And Isaiah tells us, that God “meeteth him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness”- those that remember him in his ways; and, no doubt, that to those who wait for his lovingkindness in the keeping his command, our Saviour will, sooner or later, give an abundant blessing. He is not a hard Master, and unwilling to repay the earnest services of his people. He is not unrighteous to forget any who remember him.

But further, the Catechism teaches us, that by reOn the Lord's Supper.

101 ceiving the Sacrament aright, our souls are " strengthened and refreshed, as our bodies are by the bread and wine:”—and spiritual strength and refreshment are what we greatly need. In the midst of so much temptation -surrounded with so much to weary even our willing spirits, whatever is the means of strengthening and refreshing our souls, we should thankfully make trial of, and should at no time disregard. The grace and assistance of God is what we constantly require, to aid the weakness and weariness of our souls; and this grace is bestowed on all those who, with devout hearts, receive this Sacrament. The Holy Spirit is expressly promised to the prayer of faith; and who can doubt that it is plentifully bestowed on those who meet to remember their merciful Redeemer,—who spiritually eat his flesh and drink his blood.

Surely, well does the Church instruct us, that “the benefit is great if with a true penitent heart and lively faith we receive this holy Sacrament:" for if we so receive it," then we dwell in Christ and Christ in us” according to what our Lord himself said, “ If any man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him and make our abode with him.” Surely the benefit of this is great indeed. Let us, then, pray that we may have faith to love him, and that our hearts may be disposed to do his will; and then we shall enjoy that greatest of all earthly blessings, “ Christ in us—the hope of glory.” The prayers, too, which are offered up in the Communion Service, are not, we may assuredly believe, offered up in vain.

When, in the name of his well-beloved Son, we pray to our Father which is in heaven, that we may truly serve him in holiness and righteousness all the days of our life, will he turn a deaf ear to our entreaties? Will he disregard our cry? We should have faith to believe that he certainly will not. The pleading, too, of your ministers, that the body and blood of Christ may “preserve your bodies and souls unto everlasting life," you

may, to your comfort, believe, is heard of God, and will be answered. Do, then, that "in remembrance of your Lord, which he has commanded you to do, and pray that the holiness of your lives may witness the benefits which you have received thereby."

J. M.

THE END OF REVOLUTIONS; OR THERE MUST BE

RULING POWERS.

(Written by an old Correspondent.) ENGLISHMEN, ARE you mad? If you are not, what are you doing, in paying any sort of attention to those most evil counsel. lors, who encourage you to disobey lawful authority ? Do you think you can ever be free from authority ? It is very true, you may change from good authority to bad, from mild government to tyranny ; from the enjoyment of all reasonable liberty to a yoke of slavery : but subject to power men must be, and will be, to the end of time. Take care that you do not make chains for yourselves, by the folly of not being content to " let well enough alone."

Do you suppose that the end of rebellions and revolutions is, to do away with power ? Rebellions and revolutions are no new things. Let us look at two or three instances, to see whether or not they have had any such effect, as to do away with rule and authority. And observe, if they do not effect this, they do not answer the end your evil counsellors are now tempting you to drive at. You may get a revolution; and when it is all over, find yourselves worse off than ever in this very respect of submission to rulers. Unless you can get rid of all authority, consider well, before you run the desperate risk of changing mild authority for cruel ; better for worse.

Rebellions and revolutions, I say, are no new things: The End of Revolutions.

103 the course and end of them, unhappily, are too well known.

1. We read of a rebellion in Israel, in the days of King David, set on foot by his wicked son Absalom. And please to take notice of the way in which it was brought about ; for it is very instructive. Absalom was used (we read) to rise up early, (i. e. to make a great show of diligence and zeal for the public good) and take his stand in the gate, where any man who had a controversy came to the king for judgment. And when any such came, he would speak smoothly to them and say; “ See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee." And then he would add :-" O that I were made judge in the land, that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice." And in this manner, (joined with other flatteries of the people) did he steal the hearts of the men of Israel. · (2 Sam. xv. 1-6.)

Now, we will not stop to argue, how little likely a person to do justice a vain, licentious young man was, who had already been guilty of murdering a brother, in a very treacherous and cruel way, and was now on the point of raising a rebellion against his father. You will, at the least, agree that these are bad preparations for doing justice. The point before us is, only to consider what the end of the rebellion was, and whether it released people from obedience to lawful authority. It succeeded far enough to occasion civil war, and bloodshed, and death; but no further. Absalom himself was presently killed in battle:--and what was the consequence? Why, that the people, with general consent, were glad and thankful to have the king back again! Doubtless, they had, in a very short time, seen enough to convince them that they were better off before; and that their true wisdom was, to obey the king and the laws. Authority, therefore, was not got rid of here. 2. To take a long step in history, let us next look

« ElőzőTovább »