Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

wiser and humbler; and he now even Dante's “ Vita Nuova” bas hardly goes to the opposite extreme of refusing anything more mystical than this, to obey when the Lord would send him. written by Jonathan Edwards of his The undertaking seems too great for him, betrothed : “ They say there is a young and he presents all sorts of excuses with lady in New Haven who is beloved of a view of escaping from the responsibili. that Great Being who makes and rules ty which it involves. Certainly I will the world, and that there are certain be with thee. This assurance ought at seasons in which this Great Being, in once to have determined his course, for some way or other, comes to her and with God's help we can do all things. fills her mind with exceeding sweet deThis shall be a token unto thee ..... ye light, and that she hardly cares for any. shall serve God upon this mountain. The thing except to meditate on Him. She token is the success of the enterprise it has a singular purity in her affections ; self. But how could that be a token, is most just and conscientious in all her that is, a sign of success ? The language conduct; and you could not persuade means, according to Bush, “Go now and her to do anything wrong or sinful if try; and you shall find by the event that you would give her all this world, lest I have sent you."

she should offend this Great Being. VERSES 13-14. What is his name? She is of a wonderful calmness, sweetMoses had so little confidence in him- ness, and universal benevolence, espeself now that he would undertake noth- cially after this great God has mapiing of himself. Whatever he might fested Himself to her mind. She will do, he would do only in the name and sometimes go about from place to place by the authority of God. And the singing sweetly, and seems to be always divine name was to accredit him also to full of joy and pleasure, and no one his people. . Hitherto God had been knows for what. She loves to be alone, known and invoked by different names, walking in the fields and groves, and such as El (strong one), El Elion (most seems to have some one invisible always high), El Shaddai (almighty), and es- talking with her." He married this pecially Elohim, the plural of Eloah. dear girl at seventeen, and of their The name Jehovah seems also to have blessed union, in the second generation, been known before this time, but not came Aaron Burr.—Christian Intelliused very much. I AM THAT I Am. gencer. The self-existent, the eternal, the unchangeable One, who, because He is A FATHER and his little son were unchangeable, keeps His covenant and once riding along a familiar road with performs His promises; hence, the cove- a gentle horse. To gratify the child nant God, or God of revelation. There the father placed the reins in his hand, is a similarity between the self-descrip- but at the same time, unseen, retained tion of God here and the lavguage used his own hold on them. As they rode by our Lord in John viii. 58: “Be on they saw approaching them, at terfore Abraham was, I am," from which rific speed, a runaway team. The danwe may infer that the being, the subject ger was great and imminent. But the speaking, is the same in both cases. father guided his horse so that a colli. Closely connected with this self-utter- sion was avoided, and the danger ance of God, and in Hebrew almost escaped. identical with it in form, is the word! When all was over, the little son Jehovah or Jahveh, which occurs very looked up to his father, and with choked often in the Old Testament, and in our utterance said, “I thought I was drivEnglish Bibles is, with a few exceptions, ing, but I wasn't, was I, papa ?” translated Lord. The name Jehovah, So often does the child of God, when accordingly, designates God as the self some peril has been escaped, or some existent, unchanging, ever-living God, deliverance has been vouchsafed in ways who reveals Himself, enters in covenant ur foreseen and unthought of, bave occawith men, and keeps His covenant sion to say, “Father, I thought I was promises.

driving, but I wasn't.” It is blessed to
I feel that the reins are in the hands of
One mightier and wiser than we are.

JULY 24.

1881.

Sixth Sunday after Trinity.

KEY-NOTE: “ According to His mercy He saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing

of the Holy Ghost."

LESSON XXX.

Moses and Aaron.—Exod. iv. 27-v. 4.

him.

27. And the Lord 'said unto Aaron, Go into 1. And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, the wilderness to met Moses. And he went, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of and met him in the mount of God, and kissed Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a

feast unto me in the wilderness. 28. And Moses told Aaron all the words of 2. And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord, that the Lord who had sent him, and all the signs I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I which he had commanded him.

know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go. 29. And Moses and Aaron went and gathered 3. And they said, The God of the Hebrews together all the elders of the children of Israel: hath met with us : let us go, we pray thee, three

30. And Aaron spake all the words which the days' journey into the desert, and sacrifice unto Lord had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs the Lord our God; lest he fall upon us with in the sight of the people.

pestilence, or with the sword. 31. And the people believed : and when they 4. And the king of Egypt said unto them, heard that the Lord had visited the children of Wherefore do ye, Moses and Aaron, let the peoIsrael, and that he had looked upon their afflic. | ple from their works? get you unto your burtion, then they bowed their heads and wordens. shipped.

QUESTIONS.

What is the Key-note for this day? How is Israel ? Why does Jehovah call Israel His it related to the Gospel and Epistle for the day? people? When was the covenant established ? Is there any benefit in having been baptized ? What was the token thereof? What sacrament What is required of those who have beep bap now corresponds with circumcision? Do all tized ?

who are baptized now belong to the people of What is the subject of our lesson to-day ? God? For what purp ge does Jehovah demand What relationship existed between Moses and the liberation of Israel? What is meant by Aaron ? Which was the older of the two ? feast here?

VERSES 27-28. What did the Lord say to VER. 2. What answer did Pharaoh give to Aarop ? Did he go? Where did he meet the demand of Moses and Aaron? What did Moses? What is meant by the mount of God! he mean by his question ? What by saying, I What was Moses doing when Aaron met him ? | know not the Lord? What sort of gods did What did Moses tell Aaron? What signs are Poaranh know? What did he probably believe referred to ? vers-8 1-9. What are signs? For concerning Jehovah ? Was his ignorance of what purpose were these given to Moses? Jehovah itself a sin ? Verse 5.

VER, 3. What did Moses and Aaron here VERS. 29-31. Whither did Moses and Aaron say? Who were the Hebre10s What is meant go? Whom did they gather together? What | by the term God of the Hebreus Whitber do is meant by elders here? Why did they :$- they ask permission to go? What was the semble these? Who spoke to them? Why did length of a three days' journey ? What did Aaron speak ? vs. 13-16. What did he say? chap. they as-ign as the end of this journey ? Was iii. 15-17. What signs did he do? How were the their demand to go into the wilderness for this people affected when they heard and saw these purpose a reasonable one ? ihings? What did they do? Was this as Moses VER. 4. What does the king of Egypt say ? had expected ? But was it as God bad prumised? What does the word let here mean? What

VERSE 1. To whom did Moses and Aaron now! mandate did he utter? What then was the go? What was the proper name of this Pna: result of this first application to Pharaoh ? raoh? Where did Pharaoh probably reside at verses 6-9. Was this as God had foretold ? this time? Where was Zoan | What did they Chap. iii. 19. Would it have been better, then, say to Pharaoh? What does the word Lord if no effort had been made to deliver Israel stand for here? Do you remember what Je- | Is the effort at deliverance from sin often painhovah means ? Why is Jehovah called God of ful too? Is this paintulness salutary?

1. Jesus! I live to Thee,

The loveliest and best;
My life in Thee, Thy life in me,

in Thy blest love I rest.

2. Jesus ! I live to Thee,

Wher ever death shall come;
To die in Thee, is life to me,

In my eternal home.

NOTES. The key-note expresses the the chiefs of families or tribes, who • theme of the Epistle for the day, in were generally old men. The Israelites which we are taught how that “better in Egypt preserved their own national righteousness," spoken of in the Gospel, organization. As a body they were subis to be obtained. By baptism, the ject to the Egyptian government, while “washing of regeneration,” we are as individuals they obeyed leaders or made members of Christ (baptized into officers of their own people. Any Christ), and therefore partakers of the movement in hehalf of the people must merits of His atoning death, and of the therefore be submitted to the elders or power of His risen life; and what is chiefs, and their influence and co-operarequired of us now is that “henceforth tion must first of all be securel. And we should not serve sin," or that we Aaron spake. The last excuse that should "reckon ourselves to be dead in Moses made for not accepting the divine deed unto sin, but alive unto God commission, was, that he was not elothrough Jesus Christ.”

quent, but slow of speech and slow of VERSES 27–28. Aaron. A brother tongue. For this reason God appointed of Moses, three years older than the Aaron to be speaker on public occasions, latter, now accordingly eighty-three while Moses was the organ for divine years of age. He was a man of more communication. “He shall be to thee eloquence and more popular talents than instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be Moses, but of less force and decision of to him iustead of God.” In accordance character. He had hitherto spent his with this arrangement Aaron appears life in Egypt, and knew all about the here as speaker, while the subject-matafflictions of his people; and, like his ter of his discourse proceeds from Moses. brother Moses, he no doubt, longed and And did the signs. Performed the miraprayed for their deliverance. The Lord cles mentioned above. In the sight of said, Go into the wilderness. Out of the people. The elders, with whom there bis desire for the salvation of his people may have been assembled also many of there grew a desire to go to meet Moses. the common people. And the people beThis was the condition of the divine lieved. This was contrary to the expecrevelation. The wilderness is the desert tation of Moses. He remembered the of Sinai. He met him in the mount of disastrous failure of his effort forty years God. Moses, after much hesitation, before. He knew that by long bondhad returned the flock to Jethro and age their spirit had been broken; and started to go to Egypt. At first he took he knew, too, that their religious faith along his wife and children, but for some was weak. Therefore he said, They will reason he seems to have changed his not believe me, nor hearken unto my purpose and to have sent them back voice. But God had promised him a again to Jethro; and he had now ar- favorable reception; and according to rived again at Mount Horeb, on his that promise it now happened. The journey to Egypt, when Aaron met him. Lord had visited the children of Israel. Moses told Aaron all the words of the During the period of their residence in Lord. The promises and commands Egypt the Israelites preserved, in a meawhich Jehovah had given him. And sure at least, the faith and worship of all the signs. The miracles of the rod, the God of their fathers. But this of the leprous hand and of the water, seems not to have been a period of great related in verses 1-9. A sign, in the religious activity. After the first genesense in which the word is here used, is ration was gone, there were no more a miracle attesting the presence of some prophets in Israel, no more revelations, supernatural power. Moses was fur- no more signs, and miracles, and visions. nished with miraculous powerin order to But now the Lord bad visited His peoaccredit him to the king of Egypt as ple, a new period of religious activity Jehovah's messenger.

bad commenced, and the people now VERSES 29-31. Moses and Aaron were ready to believe and to worship. went. They first went to Goshen in Revivals of the Church, like the ReEgypt where the great body of the Is- formation in the sixteenth century, can raelites were still living. And gathered not be made by the will of man. They together all the elders. The elders were must wait until the Lord visits His peu

ple. Then the leaders will be provided, serving as the token of the covenant, is and the people will be ready to hear. baptism; and all who are baptized be

VERSE 1. And afterward. After long to the people of God. That they their meeting with the elders and chief may hold a feast unto me. The first demen among the Israelites. Went in, mand is not for an unconditional surand told Pharaoh. They went into the render of the people, but simply for a capital, and then into the palace of the temporary furlough, with a view to celeking. This Pharaoh, it will be remem- brating a religious festival, consisting in bered, was called Amenophis. He is worship and sacrifice. called Menephtha, on Egyptian monu- VERSE 2. Who is the Lord ? I know ments, and is said to have been a son of not the Lord. No doubt Pharaoh was Rameses II. at the beginning of whose perfectly honest in saying that he did reign, as we remember, Moses was born. not know the Lord or Jebovah. He The residence of the Egyptian kings, at had probably never heard the name of this time, seems to have been Zoan or Jehovah until now. But his declaraTanis, in lower Egypt, on the eastern cion here is not an expression of disbeside of the Tanitic arm of the Nile. lief in the existence of Jehovah. He There Moses and Aaron met Pharaoh, probably looked upon Jehovah, as he and there most of the marvellous events looked upon any one of his own gods, connected with the history of the Exo- as being only one among many, the dus occurred. Compare Ps. lxxviii. 12. national god of the Israelites, who if be

Thus saith the Lord God of Israel. It ever did amount to much, had now lost will be remembered that the word Lord his power and was not of much account. is a translation of Jehovah, which is con- He probably measured the digoity of pected with that self designation of God, Jehovah by the dignity of the Israelites I ant that I am," and served afterwards groaning under their burdens, from as a proper name for the eternal, self- whom he thought he had not much to fear. existent, living God of revelation, who But this ignorance itself was something had entered into covenant with Israel. sinful. Not to know the Lord, is a state The time with which we have here to do of ignorance in which no one can long was an age of Polytheism. Many gods remain without fault. Besides, Pharaoh were ackuowledged and believed. Every as a Polytheist, a believer in many gods, nation or tribe had its own god or gods, was as much obliged to grant freedom to which it gave proper names, thus dis- of worship to the Israelites. as to any tinguishing them from the gods of other other part of his subjects. His conduct, nations or tribes. Thus the names of therefore, possesses the quality of tysome of the Egyptian gods were Osiris, rannical intolerance. Isis, Serapis, Mnevis ; while Baal and VERSÈ 3. The God of the Hebrews. Moloch were favorite names for their Hebrews is another name for the chilimaginary divinities among the Canaan- dren of Israel, especially the one by ites. In this condition of things it was which foreigners were in the habit of necessary that the Hebrews also should designating them. Here Moses and have a proper name for their God; and Aaron use the term by which Pharaoh that name was Jehovah, than which a bimself bas been accustomed to desigbetter could not have been used, as it nate the people of Israel. Three days' expresses the eternal, self-existent being journey. A three days' journey, encumof God, in distinction from the merely bered with women, children, and cattle, imaginary divinities of the heathen. could not be more than forty-five or Jehovab, however, is called the God of fifty miles; and this distance would Israel, not simply because Israel is the bring them into the desert of the Sinaioply people that knows Him, but be- tic peninsula, beyond the borders of cause He has become their God in the Egypt. Sacrifice unto the Lord our God. covenant of circumcision. Therefore This demand was a reasonable one even also Jehovah calls Israel His people, from an Egyptian standpoint. The let my people go. For the history of the Egyptians would have admitted that it institution of the covenant of circum- was necessary for the Hebrews to worcision, see Gen. xvii. The sacrament ship their god, where and in wbat mannow corresponding to circumcision, and ner he might choose to demand. But this the laws regulating religion in were closed. As one who ministered to Egypt did not permit them to do the sufferer bent over him, he at first there. In Egypt the Hebrews could thought him dead; but the white lips have sacrificed only to Egyptian gods. moved, and slowly in weak tones he reIn order to sacrifice to Jehovah they peated: must go beyond the borders of Egypt. Hence the request to be permitted to go

"Now I lay me down to sleep,

I pray Thee, Lord, my soul to keep; into the wilderness was a reasonable If I should die before I wake, one.

I pray Thee, Lord, my soul to take; VERSE 4. Wherefore do ye let the And this I ask for Jesus' sake." people from their work! i. e. Wherefore do ye hinder the people from their

Opening his eyes, and meeting the work? Pharaoh looks upon the de

pitying gaze of a brother soldier, he exmand simply as a device for obtaining

claimed: “My mother taught me that respite from their laborg. He thinks

19 when I was a little boy, and I have said all they are after is to gain a holiday,

it every night since I can remember. and therefore roughly orders them off

Before the morning dawns, I believe to their burdens. He regards Moses

God will take my soul for. Jesus' sake;'

but before I die I want to send a mesand Aaron as demagogues, who, if they

sage to my mother." were left alone, would cause the Egyptians much loss, and who must there

He was carried to a temporary hosfore be put down without much cere

pital, and a letter was written to his

mother, which he dictated, full of Chrismony. The immediate result of this first application to Pharaoh, then, was not

tian faith and filial love. Just as the a favorable one. Their burdens, instead

sun rose, his spirit went home, his last

articulate words being : of being diminished, were increased. Compare verses 6-9. This was as God “I pray Thee, Lord, my soul to take; had foretold. See chap. iii. 19, 20. To | And this I ask for Jesus' sake." many shortsighted Israelites it may have

The prayer of childhood was the seemed that it would have been better if no effort at all had been made for

I prayer of manhood. He learned it at | his mother's knee in infancy, and he

: their deliverance. Their condition now

whispered it in dying, when bis manly was worse than before. But after all

life ebbed away on a distant battleit was not so. Their burdens were in

field. God bless the saintly words, loved creased for a little while, but only that they might be thrown off altogether.

and repeated alike by high and low, rich

and poor, wise and ignorant, old and This is a type of our deliverance from

young. Happy the soul that can repeat sin, and of the effects which the Gospel

them with the holy fervor of the dying often produces. Christ said, “I came

soldier.—Dr. H. Bonar. not to send peace on earth, butasword.” But after the conflict, after all, comes peace. The process of repentance is a painful one. The "mortification of the A YOUNG lady bas a Sunday-school old man" is not a pleasant process, but class of rather bright boys, ranging is the necessary condition of the "quick between seven and nine years. Recently ening of the new man," and is there she requested each pupil to come on the fore a salutary process.

following Sunday with some passage of Scripture bearing on love. The lads

heeded the request, and in turn recited The Soldier's Prayer. their verses bearing upon that popular

topic; such as “Love your enemies,” It was the evening after a great bat-“ Little children, love one another," tle. Among the many who bowed to etc. The teacher said to the boy whose the conqueror death that night was a turn canje last: “Well, Robbie, what youth in the first freshness of mature is your verse ?” Rising, he responded, life. The strong limbs lay listless, and " Song of Solomon, second chapier, fifth the dark bair was matted with gore on verse: Stay me with flagons, comfort the pale broad forehead. His eyes me with apples ; for I am sick of love.''

« AnteriorContinuar »