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never stop five minutes under an archway without learning from other people. If you are wise enough you can learn as much from a fool as from a wise man. A fool is a splendid book to read from, because every leaf is open before you, and there is a dash of the comic in the style, which entices you to read on; and if you gather nothing else, you are warned not to publish your own folly.
Learn from experienced saints What deep things some of them can teach to us younger men ! What instances God's poor people can narrate of the Lord's providential appearances for them ; how they glory in his upholding grace and his faithfulness to his promises ! What fresh light they often shed upon the promises, revealing meanings hidden from the carnally wise, but made clear to simple hearts! Know you not that many of the promises are written with invisible ink, and must be held to the fire of affliction before the letters will show themselves ? Tried spirits are instructors to those of us whose ways are less rough. And as for the inquircr, how much is to be gathered from him! I have seen very much of my own stupidity while in conversation with seeking souls. I have been baffled by a poor lad while trying to bring him to the Saviour; I thought I had him fast, but he has eluded me again and again with perverse ingenuity of unbelief. Sometimes inquirers who are really anxious surprise me with their singular skill in battling against hope; their arguments are endless and their difficulties countless. They put us to a non plus again and again. It is only the grace of God that at last enables us to bring them to the light. In their strange perversities of unbelief, the singular constructions and misconstructions which they put upon their case and upon scriptural statements, you will often find a world of instruction. I would sooner give a young man an hour with inquirers than a week in the best of our classes, so far as practical training for the pastorate is concerned.
Once more, be much at death-beds; they are illuminated looks. There shall you read the very poetry of our religion, and learn the secrets thereof. What splendid gems are washed up by the waves of Jordan! What fair flowers grow on its banks! The everlasting fountains in the glory-land throw their spray aloft, and the dew-drops fall on this side the narrow stream! I have heard poor humble men and women talk as though they were inspired, uttering strange words, aglow with immortal glory. These they learned from no lips beneath the moon; they must have heard them while sitting in the suburbs of the New Jerusalem. God whispers them in their ears amid their pain and weakness ; and then they tell us a little of what the Spirit has revealed. I will part with all iny books, if I may see the Lord's Elijahs mount their chariots of fire.
Is not this enough upon our subject? If you desire more, it is time I remembered the sage saying, that it is better to send away an audience longing than loathing, and, therefore, Adieu !
The farmer of St. Ives. M R . PAXTON HOOD is a man of many sides and faculties. One
M day he is wisely lecturing upon homiletics, and producing
To the king without a sceptre, to the prince without a throne!
To the leader of the good old cause,' the Farmer of St. Ives. “ The old Plantagenets brought us chains; the Tudors frowns and scars ;
The Stuarts brought us lives of shame; the Hanoverian wars;
The best of princes England had was the Farmer of St. Ives. “Oh, holy, happy homestead, there where the Farmer dwelt!
Around his hearth, around his board, the wearied labourers knelt;
Till forth they come, a glorious throng, the brave old Ironsides. “ Walk proudly past these hedges, for this is holy ground;
Amidst these lowly villages were England's bravest found;
And ranged for freedom's cause, around the Farmer of St. Ives. “ Hark! England feels his tramping, our own Achilles comes;
His watchword, ó GOD IS WITH US!' it thunders through our homes. High o'er the raging tumult, hark! to the Farmer's cry• FEAR NOT, BUT PUT YOUR TRUST IN GOD, AND KEEP YOUR POWDER DRY.' “Ho! Marston, 'neath the moonlight thy thousands owned his power. Ho! Naseby, there the sceptre fell from out the monarch's power. Ho! Preston! Dunbar! Worcester! Lo, there his spirit strives; Hurrah! the tyrants fly before the Farmer of St. Ives.
“ On many a Norman turret stern blows the hero dealt,
And the Alpine summits sung the praise of the Farmer of St. Ives.
When rose in Whitehall's palaces our great Protector's hymn.
The cruel, crowned, reptile thing, that men and angels spurned;
And a fiend's malice wreaked upon that venerable head.
Forgot the hand that wrote the page in which her heart believed ;
Lo, you! at length he breathes again, this Farmer of St. Ives. “ His name shall burn—no meteor, no comet hurrying by
It shall return to light our world to future liberty,
One name shall bid them tremble yet—the Farmer of St. Ives. “ Unfurl that drooping banner! Lo, let it float again;
Ye winds receive it in your clasp! waft it, thou surging main !
The pulse of England beats like his—the Farmer of St. Ives. “Raise up, raise up the pillar! some grand old granite stone,
To the prince without a sceptre, to the king without a throne!
The Object of Sabing Faith.*
(Continued from page 418.) IV. In what degree must the object of saving faith be known ? We have seen that the salvation must be in the object, that this object must be in the Scriptures, and what that object is as contained in the Scriptures. Now, as this object may be presented in different degrees,
· * We must apologise for permitting the second part of Mr. Rogers'article to stand over so long. It was an oversight. The paper is in the highest degree important and weighty. A more outspoken deliverance we have seldom read. - C. H. S.
and with more or less of other truths mingled with it, it will be needful to inquire with what correctness, and to what extent, it must be exhibited in order to become effectual to salvation ? That object, we hare maintained, must at all times be one and the same, and cannot in itself be changed, that it must be known to be believed, and must be taught to be known, and that there is no inore nor less of salvation in the faith than in its object. Let us banish the thought for ever that anything else can in the least degree be saving. Let us repudiate the something else, just because it is something else. We do not want to know what that something else is which is proposed to be substituted for the old truths of the gospel, it is enough for us to know that it is something else. We are bound to examine it, we may be told, before we reject it. Not, we reply, if we do not want it, and are thoroughly satisfied with what we have. We are wedded to the truth we have embraced, and it is sinful and revolting to speak to us of the charms of any other. We have no need, therefore, or inclination for something else. The fact that it is something else is sufficient to convince us that it is something false, and something at once to be rejected and condemned. This sentiment we reiterate, because of its great import, and the necessity for keeping it in mind in our subsequent inquiries. Whatever additions may be made to the presentation of the one object of saving faith can be no part of that object, and in obscure representations the only question that can arise is, whether it be really there or not? It is in itself so distinct that its presence or absence may without much difficulty be discerned. Once know what it is, and it will be easy to know where it is. It is not needful, nor, indeed, possible that the whole gospel should be presented at one view; but so perfect is the system that the whole is virtually contained in any one of its essential parts, and so simple is it, both in its oneness and harmony, so fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, that each part contains the whole as well as the whole every part. Substitution, for instance, atonement, imputed righteousness, are parts, each one of which includes the whole. Whatever is not the gospel, on the other hand, has no resemblance to it, no kindred tie, but is in direct opposition to it. It is absurd, therefore, to suppose that anything can be so like the gospel as to be taken for it, or so like the one salvation as to be mistaken for it. It is either the gospel or no gospel, either salvation or no salvation. Nor is it for one moment to be supposed that a proposition in which the great salvation is contained and one in which it is not contained, may approach so near to each other that there shall not be a hair's-breadth between thein. Souls do not thus tremble on the balance between heaven and hell. The merits of the creature, in whole or in part, are the ground of the one, and the merits of Christ are the entire ground of the other. To rely upon Christ is to look to him for all our wisdom, all our righteousness, all our sanctification, and all our redemption, and to rely in the least upon ourselves is to reject him altogether. It is marvellous that some who do know the gospel should fancy at times that they can see it where it is not. It is so unlike everything else that they ought to know it at once. It is so bright and sparkling that everywhere it discovers itself.
If there be any doubts whether the real gospel be in any sermon or treatise, it is sufficient evidence that it is not there. When not distinctly stated and made the most prominent object, it is not there. If it cannot be seen plainly it is not seen at all. The reason is, that it is so unlike all the other works and ways of God, and so independent of human deductions and imaginations, that it cannot be blended with them. While we hold, therefore, that the gospel admits of degrees of revelation, we do not hold that in itself it admits of limitation of any kind. If a part be revealed which virtually includes the whole, that part may become the object of saving faith. If no essential part be there, there is no gospel at all. As to resemblances, it has none ; and as for being concealed under new terms and illustrations, if not seen by faith, it might as well not be there at all. There is no half-and-half gospel. In proportion as it stands alone it is effectual to salvation ; in proportion as it is mingled with other sentiments it loses its power to save. Its shadow, even, may have a healing power, as in the ancient types, but then it must be its own shadow, not distorted by other objects placed in the same light. Every aspect in which he who is the object of saving faith is presented for that purpose in the Scriptures is one of entireness and not of degree. Is he “ the way"? It is not part of the way, but the whole. Is he “the truth”? He is the one particular form of truth, and the whole of the truth upon which saving faith depends. Is he “the life" ? The first act of life received from him has no degrees. Life and death have nothing in common, and there is nothing between them. Even so, there is nothing in common with Christ and any other object of faith, and there is nothing between them. As the faith of justification in all men is the same, it is probable that its object is substantially the same both in kind and degree, and that degrees both of knowledge and of faith belong to its accompanying and consequent effects. “I,” saith Christ, “am the door.” Every one who is saved must enter by that door, some it may be with greater confidence and alacrity than others, but the door is the same, and the act of entering is the same to all.
V. Is faith in the one salvation absolutely needful for salvation ? Must there be faith? Must there be faith in one particular object ? And must that one object be the salvation which is in Christ ; that, and that only, at all times and under all circumstances? We reply, Yes! Will not the mere desire for salvation suffice? Will not faith in the mercy of God suffice? Will not faith in God for salvation suffice, without faith in the salvation which he has provided ? We reply, No! It is not enough to feel the want of some salvation. This may lead to a knowledge of the true salvation, but is of no other use. The salvation by Christ must be known to be desired, and be desired to be obtained. The salvation desired apart from the meritorious work of Christ is quite another thing. It has no agreement with it, and is in fact in opposition to it. Many desire to be saved, but not in God's appointed way. If upon the ground of their own merits, they are opposed to the true salvation ; if upon the ground of the mere mercy of God, they ignore it. The salvation sought from mercy alone is a different salvation altogether from that sought from the mercy of God in Christ. It is mercy for deliverance from hell. That is all. It is