Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

are mercifully placed above the toils and hardships of penury, should perform their lighter duties with joy and gratitude.

But both classes should remember that this spirit of cheerful labour is only to be acquired in the school of CHRIST; who did not his own will but the will of Him that sent him;" yea, whose meat and drink” it was “ to do the will of his Father, and to finish his work."

0.

ON PLAYING AT CARDS. . [The following Extract of a Letter on this subject was written by the late WILLIAM Hey, Esq. F.R.S., of Leeds. ]

“ In every debate, some fixed principle must be agreed upon by the parties debating; as it is only by comparing the question with these settled principles that any debate can be brought to a conclusion. Let me advise you, in any religious debate, to take this method. Settle with precision the principles upon

which you and

your opponent agree, and you will often find that the debate is concluded before it is begun. The question here is this :--Is card-playing a recreation suitable for a real Christian? Now, then, first agree upon the character of a real Christian. This must be drawn from the Bible. He is one who endeavours to do all to the glory of God, even the most common actions of life; who lives in the spirit of prayer, and who thinks it his duty to shun even the appearance of evil. He is one who denies himself, and takes up his cross daily to follow Christ. He is one who would abstain even from lawful things that would lead others into sin. These, and other appropriate marks of a Christian, should first be clearly ascertained and allowed

ON CARD-PLAYING.

87

on both sides; and then you may compare the diversion of card-playing, as it really exists, with the al. lowed character of a saint.

"1. The time employed in it is completely thrown away, (remember redeeming the time' is one christian precept,) unless it appears, that card-playing refreshes the body or mind, and fits one or both for serious service. Conversation on general subjects may be made profitable. Walks abroad are consistent with a contemplation of the works of God; but card-playing confines the body confessedly, and is inconsistent with any contemplation of God and his glorious works.

66 2. It is confessed that card-playing lays a temptation for the exercise of wrong tempers. This temptation is not unavoidable, as intercourse with the world is; but is voluntarily and unnecessarily adopted. How is this consistent with our daily prayers? We ought never to expose ourselves unnecessarily to the danger of any sin. Who plays at cards without an undue agitation of mind? Without an eagerness which the importance of the subject does not warrant, especially if money (as is generally the case) may be won, or lost; at play?

“ 3. We ought to do all things to the glory of God, so that we may conscientiously pray for a blessing upon our recreations, as we do upon the food we eat. But who ever thought of praying for a blessing upon his engaging in a card party ?

66 4. We ought to avoid lawful things that may injure others, or draw them to do what they think wrong, or would hurt their minds; "I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, if flesh causeth my brother to offend. Let us try card-playing by this charitable rule ; and it will decide."

THE DEATH OF A YOUNG JEWESS.

(From an American Publication.) A Jew, of respectable character, lately came from London to America; and with his only child, a daughter in her seventeenth year, settled in a beautiful retreat on the banks of the Ohio. He had buried his wife before he left Europe, and he knew no pleasure except in the society of his beloved child. She was, indeed, worthy of a parent's love. She was extremely beautiful in her person, but possessed the superior charms of a cultivated mind and an amiable disposition. No pains had been spared on her education ; she could read, and speak with fluency, several different languages, and her manners captivated all who beheld her. No wonder, then, that a father, far advanced in age, should place his whole affections on this only child of his love; especially as he knew no source of happiness beyond this world. Being a strict Jew, he educated her in the strictest principles of his religion, and he thought that he had presented it with an ornament.

“ It was not long ago that his daughter was taken ill. The rose faded from her cheek, her eye lost its fire, her strength decayed, and it soon became apparent that her disease was insurmountable and fatal. The father hung over the bed of his daughter with a heart ready to burst with anguish. He often attempted to converse with her, but seldom spoke except by the language of tears. He spared no trouble or expense in procuring medical assistance, but no human skill could avert the arrow of death. The father was walking in a small grove near his house, wetting his steps with his tears, when he was sent for by his dying daughter. With a heavy heart he en

THE DEATH OF A YOUNG JEWESS.

89

tered the door of the chamber, soon, he feared, to be the chamber of death. He was now to take a last farewell of his child, and his religious views gave

him but a feeble hope of meeting her hereafter.

“ The child grasped the hand of her parent, and addressed him with all the energy which her expiring strength permitted,—"My father, do you love me?".

My child, you know I love you,—that you are dearer to me than all the world beside !! “But, father, do you love me?' "Why, my child, will you give me pain so exquisite? Have I, then, never given you any proofs of my love?' But my dearest father, do you love me?' The father could not answer; the child added, "I know, my dear father, you have ever loved me;-.you have been the kindest of parents, and I tenderly love you. Will you grant me one request ? -0, my father, it is the dying request of your daughter,—will you grant it?" "My dearest child, ask what you will, though it take every shilling of my property, whatever it be, it shall be granted. I will grant it. My dear father, I beg you never again to speak against Jesus of Nazareth!' The father was damb with astonishment. • I know,' continued the dying girl, I know but little about 'this Jesus, for I was never taught : but I know that he is a SAVIOUR, for he has manifested himself to me since I have been sick, even for the salvation of my soul. I believe he will save me, although I have never before loved Him. I feel that I am going to Him,that I shall ever be with Him. And now, my father, do not deny me; I beg that you will never again speak against this Jesus of Nazareth! I entreat you to obtain a Testament which tells of Him; and I pray that you may know Him; and when I am no

more, you may bestow on Him the love that was for. merly mine!

" The exertion here overcame the weakness of her feeble body. She stopped ; and her father's heart was too full even for tears. He left the room in great horror of mind, and before he could recover himself, the spirit of his idolized daughter had taken its flight, we may trust, to that SAVIOUR whom she very imperfectly knew, but yet loved and honoured. The first thing the parent did, after committing to the dust his last earthly joy, was to procure a New Testament. This he read; and, taught by the Spirit from above, is now numbered among the meek and humble followers of his once despised SAVIOUR."

ADDRESS TO SERIOUS YOUNG PERSONS ON THE

ADVANTAGES OF SOCIAL PRAYER. UNION is frequently the occasion of strength. An individual confronting the force of a numerous army is sure to be overcome ; but let him join a band of soldiers of equal force with those on the opposite side, and then success may be rationally hoped for, from the exertions of all. Since we are permitted to illustrate spiritual things by things natural, I shall apply this principle to the practice of Social Prayer; addressing my exhortation to those, who, young in years, have yet learned to “ deny themselves, to take up the

cross, and to follow CHRIST,” and who have experienced the truth of our Saviour's assertion, “My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

If " the effectual fervent prayer ofone 6 righteous man availeth much," what encouragement may not be derived from the consideration of many being en: gaged in the same work. Have any serious, youthful readers of this Miscellany hitherto neglected Social Prayer, either from inconsideration, fear, or sloth? God grant that, soon, a sacred altar may be reared by them and their juvenile friends, around which, “two

« AnteriorContinuar »