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McCheyne penned on a leaf of his note-book the following fragment :
“My own loved Bible, must I part from thee,
Companion of my toils by land and sea ;
Sweet promises of glories yet to rise !” A few years after, in the year 1843, Dr. Wilson and a travelling companion were visiting the same spot. They employed a Samaritan from Sychar to descend and examine the well, when the remains of the Bible were found. May we not learn a lesson from this story of Eastern travel ? Does not the Bible at the bottom of the well all the years intervening between its loss and its recovery suggest to us the thought of the word in the mind and memory of the unbelieving and careless formalist? During the years between its loss and recovery, the Bible was of no use to anyone. It was becoming defaced and illegible. So it is with the word in the mind and memory of the unbelieving and careless formalist. When the lost Bible was reco
ecovered, fragments only remained. When circumstances bring to light the inner state of those who have known the word of God, but have not been born again by it, remains, as it were, of the
· He was sent out with others on a mission to the Jews in the East.
word only are found-enough only to show that it was once more fully known, and that it has never been quick and powerful in their experience.
The heart and mind and conscience must ever be exercised upon the word. The word must be meditated upon, loved and obeyed, if our knowledge is to be real and quickening, if it is to increase, and we are to become strong and active and useful Christians. It is not enough to have the word of God on the bookshelf, or in the mind and memory only. It must dwell in the heart, and mould and influence the whole life. It must be like seed in good ground-not like the Bible in the well. It must be to us all that McCheyne's Bible was to him, as described in the lines he wrote on his friend's loss.
My Master; or, the Lovingkindnesses of
the Lord. BY THE LATE MISS LEAKEY, EXETER. OME weeks ago a lady was announced whom I knew
only by name, but the niece who accompanied her was an old friend, as well as a true believer
and ardent worker in the great harvest-field. On entering the room the latter arose and said, in her own pleasant way
“I have told auntie that a few words with you may set matters straight.”
Of course a slight bow and smile of welcome was my response, as I immediately took an empty seat close to the lady, saying
“ I hope the matters which require my assistance are within my compass."
“Oh, that they are," she replied with a smile, adding in a softer voice, "for are not you always seeking guidance from Him who is not only the Mighty Counsellor, but also the Friend who sticketh closer than a brother ?"
I nodded a glad assent, and feeling at once drawn towards the stranger, I gently put out my hand and laid it on hers, saying as I did so,
' Pray pardon the familiarity; when we meet in Christ's name, the bond of union is very close.”
A sigh was the lady's only answer, and a dead silence would have ensued but that I here met the niece's eye, on which she made a movement with her hands, as if to say "pray;" and, thankful for the suggestion, I exclaimed
Yes, indeed; an open mercy-seat is one of the Christian's greatest privileges! No need to sound a flourish of trumpets, or make a long and wordy preamble. We may come boldly by a royal invitation, which has never been withdrawn since first it was issued so many centuries ago.”
Another sigh, and then the lady joined us in prayer, though I perceived that her mind was ill at ease whilst we knelt before this open throne.
On arising, she at once said emphatically,
“What a mercy that you are not required to understand them. My dear friend, you may be quite sure that if you were so required, the Holy Spirit would be your teacher. These are times for taking all on trust. We must rest on the promise, “What thou knowest not now, thou shalt know hereafter.'»
“Oh, I like that'taking all on trust l'” cried the younger lady, whom I call Julia. “It is so beautiful to be able to do so; but how much more beautiful that we may do so."
“Nay, a little stronger than that. Must do so, if we would be happy Christians, or in other words, obedient children. The must is a beautiful condition of grace; He who knows what is in the mind of a man,' knew that if our thus 'taking all on trust' were only a may, how few would benefit by the privilege ; but when we are told that we must believe in the all-appointing wisdom of our heavenly Father, why, then
“We are just disobedient children if we fail to do so," cried Julia.
“When I was called to see you, I was full of a subject that occurred in my morning's portion. I will tell you what it was. To me it has been a pearl ; I hope it may prove a diamond to you,” I said, turning to the elder lady, who replied,
“I am longing to be comforted, for I do not see why I am thus dealt with ! It really seems very
hard !" “Oh, excuse me, but here we get upon ground on which I cannot stand—no, not for a single moment !"
And I withdrew my hand from hers, which I had retaken after our short prayer, with an air that must have appeared offensive to her, for she looked at me.
“I have not wounded you, I hope ?” “Deeply," I replied.
The lady started, and, thoroughly aroused, asked earnestly,
Deeply wounded you! How so, pray? Do relieve my suspense.”
"You forget that this Lord of whom you speak is dear to me by a threefold tie, each one of which is impugned by your calling His dealings in question."
Julia bent anxiously forward, as though she would beg me to cry aloud and spare not. I continued,
“I cannot bear to hear Him called into question, because He is my Father, in whose wisdom I am bound to trust. He is my Saviour, who has invited me to 'Come unto Him and find rest' from care. He is my Friend, who shares with me all the thoughts of my heart, and draws, oh, how close, to me in moments of sorrow! So, how can I remain quiet, and bear the shadow of a reflection cast upon One who to me is 'altogether lovely ?' Excuse me, dear friend, if I speak hastily; but you will not wonder when I tell the text with which the Lord refreshed me to-day; only four words, but oh, how full of beauty, and how descriptive of my Father's way of doing things !"
The sorrowing, or rather the repining lady here see to listen with more interest, as she inquired,
“Only four words, did you say?"
“ Yes; but this is nothing surprising. When God a. Father, or Jesus as a Friend, or the Holy Spirit as Comforter has a special word to say to us, He can t into them all the majesty of power and fulness of autho
“And these words were ?" anxiously asked Julia, fi something might prevent my quoting them.
" The lovingkindnesses of the Lord.' I found saying lovingkindness, till, looking again for the las at them, I saw that the plural was used. Oh, wha sponsive bound my heart gave as I repeated it over an to assure myself — lovingkindnesses ! lovingkind lovingkindnesses !' and then a perfect stream from precious word flowed into my mind, and I cried alc joy in David's own words, 'How precious, also, a thoughts unto me! How great is the sum of them !'
I was conscious of having raised my voice consic and apologised; but ah! I was speaking for someo: To neither of these now present was my messages was not aware of it at the time, for neither seemed in the Lord's word-dear Julia, because she was 1 for another, and her aunt, because she seemed the chains of which she came to complain. I couraged, and, with some sadness (fully shared in 1 I bade them good-bye.
“Oh, it rains, I see ; come out through these doors, it makes a short cut to the gate," I remar! opened the door in question, when, to my surprise. someone move quickly back, and then perceive young woman had been waiting for me in the to divided from the dining-room. I do not know wha on her face that made me speak as I did a few after, when I returned to learn her message, but it as if I were impelled to say, “So sha My word goeth forth out of My mouth; it shall return