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Notes—The theme of the Gospe1 for to-day, expressed in the key-note, is self-humiliation, as exemplified in the penitent publican in contrast with the proud, self-righteous Pharisee. The Epistle presents us with another example of great self-humiliation in the casa of the apostle Paul, who says of himself: "I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an

apostle But by the grace of God,

I am what I am." The necessity of self-humiliation in order that we may be exalted by the Lord, then, is the hson whn-h we are taught both in the Gospel and Epistle for the day; and for the (trace which shall enable us thus to humble ourselves, we pray in the Collect.

From the wilderness . of sin the children of Israel removed, and, encamping successively at Dophka and Alush (Exod. xxxiii. 12-13), they arrived at Rephidim, where again they pitched their camp for a longer season. Three notable events occurred at Rephidim: the production of water from the rock (Exod. xvii. 1-7); the war with Amalek (vers. 8-16); and the visit of Jethro, which led to the appointment of judges in Israel (Exod. xxiii.).

The encampment here continued perhaps half a month, after which they again removed; and finally, at the beginning of the third month, they arrived iu the desert of Sinai, and pitched their camp in close vicinity to the sacred mountain. And here, in the wilderness of Sinai, where Moses about a year before had received his divine call, occurred the giving of that law which has since exerted such a mighty influence upon the destinies of mankind, and the fundamental principles of which will abide in force when heaven and earth shall pa;s away.

Verse 1.—And God spake. The mountain range which is sometimes called Sinai, but more generally Horeb, terminates at its southern extremity in a perpendicular peak, which towers 2000 feet above the plain, Wady eg Sebaiyeh, lying to the south of it. This peak, called Jebel Musa by the Arabs, that is, Mountain of Moses, was probably the' one from which the law was delivered, while the people stood

in the plain below. It is commonly supposed that God uttered the Ten Commandments in articulate speech so as to be heard and understood by all the people. But see Exod. xix. 19: Acts vi. 53; Gal. iii. 19. All these words. The Ten Commandments, which are in Hebrew called the ten words of the law, which in Greek and English has become decalogue. These are divided into two tables, the first of which is commonly supposed to consist of four, and the secoud of six commandments. The first table teaches us what duties we owe to God (religious duties), the second what duties we owe to our neighbor (moral duties).

Verse 2.—Introduction to the commandments, and statement of the reasons for claiming obedience to them. / am the Lord Uiy God. Reference to the covenant established in circumcision. Israel is not to keep the commandments in order to become tbe people of Jehovah, but because they are the people of Jehovah. Have brought thee out of the land of Egypt. In Egypt Israel could not have kept the commandments (for instance, those relating to idolatry and to the Sabbath); but now, being delivered from Egypt, they are able to keep them; and with the ability comes the obligation to keep them. The same reason substantially exists in the case of Christians. The Lord has become our God, and we have become the Lord's people, in the covenant of baptism. Moreover the Lord has also delivered us, not indeed from Egyptian bondage, but from the worse bondage of the devil, of which Israel's bondage in Egypt was but a figure. We are, therefore, able to keep the commandments; and because we are able, we are, therefore, under obligation to keep them, not that we may become tbe people of God, but because we are the people of God.

Verse 3.—First Commandment. As in reality there are no other gods besides Jehovah, the true God, the commandment forbids the acknowledgement and worship of any imaginary or fictitious gods, and enjoins the acknowledgement and worship of the one God only. The heathens believe in many gods, because they see the divine power in nature divided, and manifesting itself in many different objects and forms, suchi as the sun, moon, stars, the air, clouds, winds, thunder, the earth, the sea, the mountains, rivers, lakes, and trees and animals of every kind. Some heathen na ions worship these natural objects themselves as gods; but more generally the gods are supposed to dwell in, and rule over, these natural objects and elements. The symbols and images by which these imaginary gods are at length represented to the senses are called idols. These are in the likeness of men, of birds, of four-footed beasts and of creeping things (Run. i. 23). At first the gods may be distinguished from the idols, but in course of time the idols themselves come to be worshipped, and the people who do th:s are called idolaters. This is to rob the Creator of His glory and give it to the creature. But idolatry does not only consist in worshipping actual idols. St. Paul says covetousness is idolatry, (Eph. v. 5, Col. iii. 5).

God himself wants to be the supreme object of our love, and devotion, and confidence, and worship; and anything that comes between us and God, so as to withdraw from Him our supreme love and devotion is an idol. One may, therefore, be an idolater without bowing down before a literal idol. Many acknowledge no god at all, and never utter a prayer, but that is not fulfilling the commandment. They may make an idol of themselves or of their money. God wants us to worship Him, not because He is selfish or ambitious of honor, but because it is the only condition of maintaining communion with Him, without which ihere could be no sound spiritual and moral life.

Verses 4-6.—Second Commandment. As the first commandment relates to the true object, the second relates to the true mode of worship. Anything that is in heaven above. Heaven here means the sky or atmosphere, and the things that are forbiddeu to be represented are birds and all creatures that fly in the air. In the earth beneath. Men, beasts and reptiles. In the waters Fishes and other animals of the deep. This does not mean that we may not make representations of these things,

but only that we may not make them for purposes of worshipnot as symbols of God or of the divine attributes, by means of which we might pretend to worship God. All such symbolism, as history shows, soon degenerates int) idolatry. "God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him muse worship Him in spirit and in truth." Tiue, man is not wholly spiritual, and therefore needs some outward meaus of communion with God (hence the constant tendency to symbolic representations of God, and to idolatry); but this want of our nature God has met in the ordinances of the church (altar, sacraments etc.). See verse 24. None are so spiritual as to be able to di-pense with the altar and the sacraments. Those who have no faith in these, will have faith perhaps in a mourner's bench, something of their own invention, like the pagan's idol. The second commandment, then, enjoins us to worship God in the way of His oivn appointment. A jealous God, visiting the iniquities, etc- This is what we witnesss constantly. Children inherit the consequences of the parent's sins, such as poverty, disease, vicious habits, etc. So, on the other hand, the viitue of parents procures blessings to many generations of children. And these are facts which apply with special force to the matter of this commandment. The departure from the true worship of God entails idolatry with its attendant vices upon countless generations coming after those who have taken the first step in this bad direction.

Verse 7.—Third Commandment. The name of God is that by whicb His being is manifested. God's being cannot be abused, for it is beyond the reach of the wicked, but His name may. This may be done by profane or rash swearing, cursing, blasphemy, perjury, and by the light and frivolous use of the name of God.

An oath is a declaration or promise accompanied by an appeal to God, and an imprecation of the divine vengeance if the declaration or promise be false. There is no difference between an oath and au affirmation in respect of its contents. An affirmation, 60-called, is as much an appeal to God as an oath, and serves the same purpose. An oath is lawful when it is demanded by proper authority for a worthy end; and was therefore sanctioned in the Old Testament, and accepted by our Saviour (Deut. vi. 13; x. 20; Matt, xxvi. 63). When a lawful oath is false it is perjury. And this the commandment forbids, together with all unauthorized or unnecessary swearing. "Swear not at all. . • . But let your communication (your ordinary speech, your intercourse, your common declarations and promises) be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil" (is profane). Profanity is a very great sin. God will not hold him guiltless (acquit and suffer to go unpunished) that taketh his name tn vain. In the Old Testament the sin of profanity was punished with death (Lev. xxiv. 16). The name of God must only be used seriously and reverently. Men and boys gain nothing in poiLt of respectability, character or peace of conscience by departing from this rule, but only expose themselves to the awful wrath of God.

Verses 8-11. —Fo urih Commandm ent. The word Sabbath means rest. The Sabbath is the day of rest from secular labor, but of employment in the service and worship of God. llemember the Sabbath, etc. This word remember implies that it was an old institution that was referred to, with which the Israelites had long been familiar, though they might often, especially in Egypt, have neglected it. This commandment is not arbitrary, but rests upon a necessity of our nature. See Mark ii. 27. Man cm not labor incessantly, for that would speedily end in his destruction. He needs seasons of rest and refreshing: because he is a spiritual being, he needs seasons when, by sinking back, in the way of worship, into God the fountain of his life and being, he may be quiekied and strengthened for the duties of mou. This necessity of our nature is called I of the commandment. What terminatden on the Sabbath day is all a perpendi secufar labor, and what is 2000 feet a that it shall be kept holy. Sebaiyeh, lyirigment has never been This peak, calleaannot be abolished. Arabs, that is, Jfotngtd (changed from probably the' one today of the week), was delivered, while to the Christian

Sunday or Lord's day as well as to the old Jewish Sabbath. The Lord's day should be spent in acts of public and private worship, in devotional reading and meditation, in godly conversation and works of Christian charity. The Lord's day is profaned by all kinds of secular work, and by all kinds of worldly conversation, study, and amusement, on account of which the worship of God is neglected. Visiting on the Lord's day, attending to business, travelling are some of the ways of desecrating it. In some sections of country, Sunday-school pic nics, and Sunday camp-meetintjs are occasions of profaning the Lord's day, and though carried ou in the name of religion, do immeasurable injury to the cause of religion.

By little foxes tender grapes are destroyed, according to Solomon. Little fuxes are very cunning and most difficult to catch; and so are those little temptations by which our moral natures are gradually eaten away. The tender grapes of many a Christian branch are destroyed by such little foxes as temper, discontent, avarice, vanity. Many who could resist much greater sins yield to these. There is an excitement in the very greatness of a trial of temptation which enables us to resist it; while the chase after little foxes is dull and uninteresting. No wonder that when we analyze the lives of those who have ruined themselves morally, we generally discover that

It was the little rift within the lute,
That, ever widening, slowly silenced all;

Or little pitted speck in garnered fruit,

That, rotting inward,slowly mouldered all.

How many ]>eople are almost successful, missing their aim by "Oh, such a little!" Minutise in these cases make or mar us. "If I am building a mountain," said Confucius, " and stop before the last basketful of earth is placed on the summit, I have failed." The examination is lost by half a mark. One neck nearer and the race would have been won. The slightest additional effort would have turned the tide of war. "Thou art not far from the kingdom of God," were solemn words, making the terrible difference between almost and altogether.— Chmabers's Journal.

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Editorial Notes.

Thomas Carlyle said when his wife died: ''The light of my life has goDe out." And the late Lord Beaconsfield was equally overpowered at the bier of hia wife. "On foot, wiih uncovered head, exposed to the falling rain, the stricken husband followed her remains to the crypt of the little Church of St. Michael's, which he soon after restored and beautified in her gracious memory, and where he now sleeps by her side, the tired brain and the weary hand and heart forever at rest from the strife and turmoil of life. Those who were intimate with Carlyle and Beaconsfield have said that these great heirs of fame were never the same men after the loss of their wives. It is of Beaconsfield's wife, twenty years older than himself, that the following heroic and touching incident is related. One night, when a great debate was to take place in Parliament, she entered the carriage with him to drive from their residence at Grosvenor Gate to Westminster. The groom, in closing the carriage-door, crushed her finger. Lest her husband should be agitated by the knowledge of the pain she endured, she concealed it from him during the drive, and he entered the House, sat through the debate, and made a famous speech, without knowing what martyr pain she quietly endured without allowing a groan or a sigh to escape her, so as not to disturb his mind in the great effort he was making.

The summer is upon us. The time of vacations and nervous vexation has come. Brain-workers and workers with brawny muscles pant for rest:

"For a lodge in some vast wilderness,
Some boundless continuity of shade."

The young folk and the little children are clamoring for a day's fun on some pic-nic or excursion. Even the farmer, with bronzed face, takes a day off, and hies away to the sea shore. We wish all wary, rest-seekiDg people much joy in their shaded streets or more public resorts. Lazy, do-nothing people neither need nor deserve recreation. The idler rests all the year round; his aimless, useless life becomes dull and insipid, which Do vacation can relieve. Some people object to vacations because the devil takes noDe. No, he takes none, and his children take none. The drunkard, the liar, the swearer, the thief, and the debauchee, take no respite. There is a Lord's day of rest, but no Satan's day of rest, except when he steals God's day by leading his minions to desecrate it. And then it becomes a day of the most exhausting, wearying work, followed by a "blue Monday," with headache and heartache; with an empty purse and a guilty conscience. Our vacations come but occasionally. Extending over the whole year, they would afford us neither pleasure nor repose. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy; and all play and no work makes him a very bad boy.

I Lately sat at the feet of a veteran ex-legislator while traveling on the cars. A sort of a self-made man he was, in the good sense of that term, who has been honored with important offices by his fellow-citizens. Hjp advanced life has put him beyond the pale of political favor. At his time of life he neither seeks nor could he secure an office. His gray hairs seem to be against him. For in matters of this kind the accumulated experience and ripe wisdom of years count little over against the younger aspirants for place. I was pleased to hear with what philosophical is lawful 'when it is demanded by proper authority for a worthy end; and was therefore sanctioned in the Old Testament, and accepted by our Saviour (Deut. vi. 13; x. 20; Matt, xxvi. 63). When a lawful oath is false it is perjury. And this the commandment forbids, together with all unauthorized or unnecessary swearing. "Swear not at all. . . . But let your communication (your ordinary speech, your intercourse, your common declarations and promises) be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil" (is profane). Profanity is a very great sin. God will not hold him guiltless (acquit and suffer to go unpunished) that taketh his name in vain. In the Old Testament the sin of profanity was punished with death (Lev. xxiv. 16). The name of God must only be used seriously and reverently. Men and boys gain nothing in pokt of respectability, character or peace of conscience by departing from this rule, but only expose themselves to the awful wrath of God.

Verses 8-11.—Fourth Commandment. The word Sabbath means rest. The Sabbath is the day of rest from secular labor, but of employment in the service and worship of God. Remember the Sabbath, etc. This word remember implies that it was an old institution that was referred to, with which the Israelites had long been familiar, though they might often, especially in Egypt, have neglected it. This commandment is not arbitrary, but rests upon a necessity of our nature. See Mark ii. 27. Man cinnot labor incessantly, for that would speedily end in his destruction. He needs seasons of rest and refreshing: because he is a spiritual being, he needs seasons when, by sinking back, in the way of worship, into God the fountain of his life and being, he may be quick!ed and strengthened for the duties of mou. This necessity of our nature is called 1 of the commandment. What terminatden on the Sabbath day is all a perpendismtfar labor, and what is 2000 feet a that it shall be kept holy. Sebaiyeh, lyirignunt has never been This peak, calleoannot be abolished. Arabs, fiat is, ifotngtd (changed from probably the' Odb fid.ny of the week), was delivered, while to the Christian

Sunday or Lord's day as well as to the old Jewish Sabbath. The Lord's day should be spent in acts of public and private warship, in devotional reading and meditation, in godly conversation and works of Christian charity. The Lord's day is profaned by all kinds of secular work, and by all kinds of worldly conversation, study, and amusement, on account of which the worship of God is neglected. Visiting on the Lord's day, attending to business, travelling are some of the ways of d(stcrating it. In some sections of country, Sunday-school picnics, and Sunday camp-meetings are occasions of profaning the Lord's day, and though carried on in the name of religion, do immeasurable injury to the cause of religion.

By little foxes tender grapes are destroyed, according to Solomon. Little fuxes are very cunning and most difficult to catch; and so are those little temptations by which our moral natures are gradually eaten away. The tender grapes of many a Christian branch are destroyed by such little foxes as temper, discontent, avarice, vanity. Many who could resist much greater sins yi^ld to these. There is an excitement in the very greatness of a trial of temptation which enables us to resist it; while the chase after little foxes is dull and uninteresting. No wonder that when we analyze the lives of those who have ruined themselves morally, we generally discover that

It was the little rift within the lute,
That, ever widening, slowly silenced all;

Or little pitted speck in garnered fruit,

That, rotting inward,slowly mouldered all.

How many people are almost successful, missing their aim by "Oh, such a little!" Minutite in these cases make or mar us. "If I am building a mountain," said Confucius, " and stop before the last basketful of earth is placed on the summit, I have failed." The examination is lost by half a mark. Oiie neck nearer and the race would have been won. The slightest additional effort would have turned the tide of war. "Thou art not far from the kingdom of God," were solemn words, making the terrible difference between almost and altogether.—Chmabers's Journal.

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