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The Home Preacher
Or Church in the House - Week 16

Dr. M’Farlane
Memoir of John Macfarlane
By William Graham (pdf)
The Night Lamp
A Narrative Of The Means By Which Spiritual Darkness Was Dispelled From The Death-Bed Of Agnes Maxwell Macfarlane (third edition) (pdf)


GOD of infinite mercy, who didst send Thy well-beloved Son to seek and save the lost, grant unto us by Thy grace to partake of the common salvation, that we, believing and abiding in Christ, may never again fall into those sins or vain conversation from which He hath redeemed us, but may ever grow in grace and persevere unto the end, to the glory of Thy holy name.  Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm cxxxviii. 3-8.

IN all my troubles, sharp and strong,
My soul to Jesus flies;
My anchor-hold is firm in Him
When welling billows rise.

His comforts bear my spirits up,
I trust a faithful God;
The sure foundations of my hope
Is in my Saviour’s blood.

Loud hallelujahs sing, my soul,
To thy Redeemer’s name!
In joy and sorrow, life and death,
His love is still the same.


WHEN the Lord thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou; 2. And when the Lord thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them: 3. Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. 4. For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the Lord be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly. 5. But thus shall ye deal with them; ye shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire, &c.



MOST holy and merciful God, we have now assembled before Thine altar in this house to worship and glorify Thy name.  Pour out on this family Thy gracious Spirit that our oblations of praise and thanksgiving may be acceptable to Thee, and truly blissful to us.  We are verily unworthy of this honour and privilege, for we have all sinned against Thee, and have forfeited every claim upon Thy favour.  Notwithstanding, we draw near in the full assurance of faith, that Thou wilt not hide Thy face, but rather wilt cause its smile to shine upon and encourage our fellowship.  O forgive us our sins: in the precious blood of Jesus we would be washed; and for His sake, we would earnestly beseech Thee to cast all our sins behind Thy back and into the depths of the sea.  Numerous and aggravated are our transgressions, but we are not on this account to despair: for with Thee is forgiveness.  O blessed be our God that he keepeth not His anger for ever, and that he delighteth in mercy.  Our hope is in Thy mercy, not in our merit.  Merit we have none, and in mercy Thou are inconceivably rich.  Bless the Lord, O our souls.  We thank Thee, O God, that so far as our works are concerned, sacrifice and offering Thou wouldst not.  We bring no lamb from our fold, no fruits from our harvest, and no blood from our own veins, wherewith to propitiate Thy lovingkindness.  But we present to Thee a sacrifice which Thou hast already accepted, even the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world.  Above Thine own bleeding sacrifice, we plead for mercy and grace to keep us in our times of need.  We especially ask Thee the spirit of devotion on this the morning of Thy holy sabbath.  We thank Thee for the appointment of a sabbath; and we pray that we may all be in the Spirit on the Lord’s day.  We praise Thee, O God, for the wonderful fact in the history of our redemption which this morning commemorates, even the resurrection of our Saviour from the grave.  We would be glad because we do not see His body there.  Blessed be our God that the grave in which he lay is empty.  We would now be full of hope that our bodies also shall be raised, and thereafter be conformed to His glorious body.

        Divine Redeemer!  show Thyself to us this day as Thou didst to Thy disciples, causing their hearts to burn within them. May our faith in Jesus be confirmed by our consciousness that we have risen already with Him, and have placed our affections where he sits at the right hand of

God.  God forbid that we should be subjects of the second resurrection before we have undergone the first.  O raise us from our death in trespasses and sins, and quicken us together with Christ. 

        We thank thee, O Father, for the institution of public worship.  Help us to wait upon Thee this day in the courts of Thy house.  Let not the comforts of our own house indispose us for the services of Thine.  Prepare us for meeting with Thee, and come Thou to us laden with the blessings of the gospel.  If any of our number have not yet believed, let this be the day of their new birth.  May the word preached tell powerfully upon their conscience and convince them of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment.  Holy Spirit! may Thy sharp two-edged sword pierce to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and be a discerner of the thoughts and intents of their hearts.  Ere the sun go down, may they be safe in Him who is the hiding-place. 

        And as we prize the gospel for ourselves, so would we beseech Thee to send the glad tidings of salvation to all the ends of the earth.  Increase the missionary spirit in the churches of Christ in our own and other lands.  Let prayers be made continually for the coming of Thy kingdom, and may the liberality of Thy people aye more and more increase.  Convince every one that names the name of Christ that it is alike duty and privilege to contribute of their substance to the maintenance and diffusion of the glorious gospel of the ever blessed God.  Hasten the time when we shall see Satan falling to the ground as lightning, when we shall hear of the idols being cast to the moles and the bats, and when the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.  Come, Lord Jesus; O come quickly: for Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.  Amen.  



HOLY FATHER!  breathe upon us and give us peace.  We are Thy children, and pray for more filial love and reverence.  O may it be our meat and drink to do Thy will, and may our life ever glorify Thee.  Holy Saviour!  we are the guilty children of Thy Father; wash us in Thy blood, and make us clean every whit.  Put upon us the best robe, and while we wear it, may we walk consistently with the condition and character of Thy disciples.  Holy Ghost! shed abroad in our hearts the love of God, and testify with our spirits that we are His chosen ones: and to Father, Son and Holy Ghost, we shall ascribe all the glory.  Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm xix. 11-14.

A charge to keep I have ,
A God to glorify;
A never-dying soul to save,
And fit it for the sky;

To serve the present age;
My calling to fulfil:
O may it all my powers engage
To do my Master’s will.

Arm me with jealous care,
As in thy sight to live;
And let me now myself prepare
A strict account to give.

Help me to watch and pray,
And on thyself rely:
Assured if I my trust betray,
I shall for ever die.

ACTS IX. 1-12.

AND Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest, 2. And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem. 3. And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus; and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: 4. And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? 5. And he said, Who art thou, Lord?  And the Lord said, I am Jesus, whom thou persecutest.  It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks, &c.


BRETHREN, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, let thou also be tempted. 2. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. 3. For if a man thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. 4. But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. 5. For every man shall bear his own burden, &c.



“ONLY BELIEVE.” -- Mark v. 36.

JAIRUS’ daughter was dead.  No created power now could reanimate her.  The great Physician undertook to do it, but on one simple condition, that the ruler should “only believe” that he could and would.  The condition was complied with, and the little damsel “arose and walked.”  And thus it happens with man and the Saviour. 

        Man died when he sinned.  Neither he, nor Eve, nor angels, nor animals, nor herbs, nor flowers, nor suns, nor stars might know it, but it was true notwithstanding.  And it was not long before every one said it.  The oracle said it, “In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die;” and the Holy One, having looked upon the face of the spiritual corpse, departed from Eden.  The angels said it, and discontinued their friendly intercourse.  The subtle serpent himself said it, contradicting his own assertion -- “Thou shalt not surely die.”  The phenomena of nature said it, as thunders pealed and tempest roared.  Death said it, as he flung his grim veil over the scene and headed the procession of  “all our woe.”  The whole creation said it, in the deep groans that told the present and foreknelled the future destiny of the fallen.  And are not all mundane disorders still re-echoing the appalling truth, that “man is dead?”  It must never be forgotten; the mourners must ever go about -- must never doff their “inky cloaks:” the chronometers of time must never cease ticking and speeding the black-edged telegrams, which tell to every succeeding generation the sad, sad story.  A thousand voices keep repeating it -- the moral lethargies and desolations, the cruelties, idolatries, and obscenities of heathen lands, the profanities, infidelities, and licentiousness of refined Europe, are all saying it.  There is not a mute among them.  “Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night teacheth knowledge,” concerning it, even the death of the human soul in trespasses and sins. 

        The great question is, Can this soul be restored to life?  It cannot surely be, What shall we eat or drink?  The chief end of man is to glorify God, and he can never serve that end by merely feeding and dressing corpse, by wrapping around it the cerements of the grave, and by herding with the beasts of the field, and all this as if there were no hope of living again, no means of salvation, no immortality of joy and holiness.  Here cometh in the gospel with its glad tidings, proclaiming from Calvary and its cross, that man may be restored -- that together with Christ’s dead body, he may arise -- rise in this world, rise to newness of life, rise to the old purposes of his being, to godliness, usefulness, heaven. 

        But how can this be?  How can such a dead soul be raised up?  The answer is at hand.  The great Physician is near, and his prescription is at once simple, easy to be understood, and certainly effective.  “Only believe” that Jesus himself died for sin and rose again, then cometh back to life, and life “more abundantly.” It is admitted that the restorative in such a case must be perfectly adapted to the peculiar condition of the sinner -- must be brought to him, because he cannot go to it; must be applied to him, for he is without strength to do so.  Well, it is all so arranged.  Jesus comes and says to every dead sinner, as he said to Jairus, “Only believe.”  Now there must be something very comprehensive, very potential, very divine, in this gracious prescription.  Here surely must repose the fiat of the Almighty One.  Let us search and inquire whether these things be so.  In order then to live anew unto God we have only to believe, and --

        I. That is all.  By this we mean, that in order to be saved, we have only to take God’s word for it that Christ has done all that was necessary to make it just and right in him to pardon us, and to make it perfectly safe for us to trust our souls in his keeping.  When we say “that is all,” we refer exclusively to the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ as the whole and sole ground upon which we can ask, and God can give, a full and free salvation.  We have only to believe, whatever our substitute may have to do.  We have only to believe that his life did satisfy the law, and that his death did satisfy the justice of God in our room and stead.  Is mere believing then literally  all we have to do?  Yes, in one sense -- No, in another.  We are certainly to be holy , and to do good works; but our being made holy, and our doing good works, do not form the grounds of our justification.  We are only saved on account of Christ’s good work of atonement, that is all -- the all and in all of a sinner’s pardon; and the good works of which men speak invariably come after, but never precede, our believing reception of Christ.  Man’s new or better life is merely the stream that accompanies and flows from his pardoned state.  To maintain the reverse, that his good works precede or purchase his pardon, is to subvert the entire plan of remedial grace, and to throw his justification before God, not upon Christ, but upon himself; or to assert that God has no justice to be satisfied, and that Christ, therefore, had no atonement to make, verily did make no atonement, but only manifested to mankind a beautiful example of the self-sacrifice of love, is to subvert the whole Bible account of the way of salvation, and to make a profane travesty of the great mystery of godliness.  Instead of reading “the just shall live by faith,” it would be “the just shall live by works or by personal righteousness,” which, in every view of the matter, is simply absurd.  Thanks be unto God that in order to be saved -- in order to live again, and to live for ever -- we have only to believe in Jesus, in what he is, in what he did, in what he suffered, and in what at God’s right hand he is now doing on our behalf: that is all.  We are to look clean away from ourselves, and from every one and everything else, and solely and fixedly to “behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world,” and our sins among the rest -- that is all:  for “he is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”

        Again, in order to live anew unto God, we have only to believe --

        II. That is enough.   Whereas in the former proposition the reference is exclusively to Christ’s “finished” work as the sole ground upon which pardon is offered to the guilty, in this one the reference is to the fancied good works of men as not only not sufficient for their salvation, but as really neither required nor offered.   The former included Christ’s righteousness, and it alone; this excludes man’s righteousness, and it entirely, from all share of part in the one grand atonement.  It is not easy to say which is most difficult; the persuading of the sinner that it is all in Christ; or that none of it is in the sinner himself.  We are prone to self-conceit; it breeds in and permeates all the “joints and marrow”  of the old corrupt nature.  It is soothing to think that we have some small share of credit in whatever we may be benefited.  We are strongly inclined to improve upon God’s plan, and to add to his work some trifle of our own.  But if we could do this, it would not be true to say of “believing” that it is enough.  We see, of course, that it is an inconceivably grand thing to be saved; that it is a much greater thing to be saved than it is to be created or preserved; hence we fall into the error of thinking that we may lay upon God’s altar some tender lamb of our own, to bleed and die there, alongside of his chosen spotless one.  But is it very presumptuous in us so to think and act, because not one of us is righteous -- not one of us can make ourselves righteous; and, even though we could, it would not mend the matter, for what we now did would only be doing present duty; and doing present duty cannot make amends for the omissions of the past.  The payment of present and pressing debts cannot, and do not, liquidate past debts.  And is it not a great blessing that it is so?  viz., that what our surety did for us is enough, and that our faith in what he did is enough, for our salvation.  Into what a dilemma should we have been cast if it had been otherwise! Just suppose that something had been left for us to do; that we had an appendix of self-righteousness to make up; a supplement of atonement to eke to Christ’s sacrifice -- where should we have been?  what could we have done?  We have nothing to give, and though we have got plenty to do, we can do nothing well: and surely we could never think of trusting the life of our souls to what is neither holy, nor harmless, nor undefiled?  Assuredly we of all creatures have abundant reason for thankfulness that, in order to our eternal welfare, faith in Jesus is quite enough -- enough for the “magnifying of God’s law and making it honourable” -- enough for the peace of the human conscience -- enough for the alpha and omega of spiritual life -- the beginning and the perfecting of godliness in the soul.  O the immense importance of our Mediator’s “finished work!”  Of all that ever dwelt upon the earth, he alone, when dying, could appeal to God, and declare -- “I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.” All our works, even at their most advanced stage, are unfinished; and therefore it is our only safety, as it is our sum of duty, to trust in the righteousness and blood of him who loved us with an everlasting love, and “died for our sins according to the Scriptures.” 

“Forbid it, Lord! that I should boast,
Save in the death of Christ, my God:
All the vain things that charm me most
I sacrifice them to his blood.”

        Again, in order to live anew unto God, we have only to believe --

        III. That is necessary.   Faith in Christ is a divine institute.  God has appointed it to be an essential accompaniment of our salvation. “He that believeth shall be saved; he that believeth not shall be damned,” are appalling words, but tremendously true.  No man was ever saved without believing -- “without faith it is impossible to please God.”  So high is the place assigned to faith, and so firmly bound up is it with the word of God concerning our salvation, that we are almost justified in saying that, in order to our being personally benefited by Christ’s death, that death is not enough without it.  It may indeed be thought that such an averment makes faith, not Christ, the all and in all of our salvation, and that our former proposition is therefore subverted.  But a moment’s reflection will set us right here.  All faith has an object.  If you ask me to believe your word, you must give me your word in order to my believing it; but in this, it is not my faith in your word that does me good, but your promise as given for that end.  So it is here.  The object of Christian faith is Christ, and Christ only; but the word passed for our salvation is the covenant-promise of God, that “whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”  Hence, though there be no salvation for us unless we do so believe, yet in that very moment when we do believe, it is he himself that performs the saving act: not our faith in him, but he on whom it rests, justifies and saves our souls.  Herein then lieth the necessity of faith:  it is the order of Christ’s own arrangement, it is inseparable from the mystery and ignorance and helplessness of our present state, and it vindicated by the supreme and exclusive adaptation of Christ himself to our distressing wants as the fallen and the condemned.

        Now this annexation of faith has been complained of as an ungracious thing, as a clumsy and cumbersome affair.  It has been asked somewhat profanely, when God was at the work at any rate should he not have made it so perfect a thing as to be entirely independent of even the appearance of conditions, as to be available to the sinner without this interposition of belief?  In reply we may ask, Who is ever so unreasonable as to argue that, when God was making a mind for man, he might have given him such a completeness of knowledge as to supersede the necessity of hard study -- he might have ruled it so that the pupil should at once, and as if instinctively, have leaped from the alphabet to the heights of science? Why did not the Creator produce at once the man, and the scholar, and the philosopher?  Or thus -- why did not God make every man at his birth as wealthy as Croesus, and dispense with the necessity of toil and labour from early youth to dewy age?  No sensible person says it is unreasonable to read and study to acquire learning, or to work diligently in order to amass wealth and power.  Why then should it be thought a useless exercise of our faculty of believing, when God demands it that we may be saved?  If the hand of the diligent only maketh rich, why should not the work of faith accumulate for us the unsearchable riches of Christ? which suggests the next particular, that in order to live anew unto God, we have only to believe --

        IV. That is reasonable.  There is nothing so fully consistent with what is called reason as true and undefiled religion.  It is sin, not piety, that is unreasonable.  Let us examine unto this matter.  We have seen that in expiating human guilt, Christ has done it all -- all the law of God required -- all that the dread necessities of the case demanded.  If then all the work of atonement be his, and all the advantages that flow from it be ours, reason says, let us own it.  The monopoly by Christ of this entire work dictates the justice and propriety of ascribing to him the merit thereof.  Nothing can be so highly unreasonable as to decline to give honour to whom honour is due.  But we see the reasonableness of believing still more clearly when we consider the simple, artless, unencumbered nature of belief.  It is not such a great way off, after all, from our natural capacities; it is not in itself intellectually impossible; it is not an unpleasant exercise, and it is in itself very profitable in as much as it secures for sinners all they stand in need of.  It were unreasonable to be constantly employing, as an agent, what could never command the desired end; but when that end can be certainly gained by a clearly defined and withal a simple process, it is the very height of reason to use it.   

This reasonableness of faith can be further argued by considering its congeniality with those substantive truths which are presented to its reception.  Faith and reason are mutual help-meets, and no power can put them asunder.  It is truth, the truth of God as it is in Christ, that is offered to man.  Reason was given to him for the very purpose that he might receive that truth.  By that truth, then, he is made to live anew, only, however, when the receptive faculty is put in exercise towards it.  And what is that receptive faculty?  What can it be but faith -- only believing.  Yes, faith and reason are suited to each other: beautifully and nicely are the two balanced and made to fit into each other so that they point in one direction, wherever it is God that speaks, and man that is spoken to.  The eye is well adapted for seeing, and the ear for hearing, but not more so than faith is to reason. 

Altogether, it is just so very right in itself that man should believe in God, or in the truth which God proclaims, that we cannot conceive anything so utterly opposed to reason as to refuse to believe.  It should never be forgotten that faith has led to damnation, as well as to salvation.  Adam believed the serpent, and was lost.  The devil told a lie, and it was credited.  How much more reasonable then is it to have faith in God and in his truth, than in Satan and his lie.  In a word, Jesus Christ, the object of our faith, is altogether so worthy of our confidence, that to refuse it is, in every conceivable sense, the most mindless as well as heartless conduct.  Is not his wisdom infallible?  his word sure?  his love unparalleled?  his power irresistible?  his grace all-sufficient?  his eye unslumbering?  and his arm clothed with salvation?  Why then do we hesitate about committing our souls to him -- to him whose adaptation to all our spiritual wants is so full and perfect?  Surely this is folly, if it be not insanity of the deepest type.  Wherefore let us only believe.  To do so is pure wisdom, and “wisdom is the principal thing.  She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace:  a crown of glory shall she give unto thee.”

Again, in order to live anew unto God, we have only to believe --

V.  That is easy.  That there may be no mistake here, we may at once explain that by “easy” here, we mean precisely what Christ himself means when he says, “My yoke is easy.”  The subject of human inability is not before us, the necessity of the Spirit’s influence is not yet before us, and we hold of course both these scriptural doctrines; at the same time we also hold that Christ’s yoke or religion is “easy,” in the sense in which he used that adjective.  Faith is his “yoke” or “burden,” and the one is “easy,” and the other is “light.”  Difficult enough, in certain connections, we hold it to be, but easy also in that one in which alone we are now looking at it -- the exercise, namely, of a faculty we have from God, that therewith we may do his work and obey his word.

As this is accounted a somewhat difficult subject it may be useful to examine it a little more closely: --

1.  We would remark, first, that belief is easy in itself.  You never find it difficult to trust the word of an honest man:  why then find a difficulty in the way of believing God’s word?  He is truth itself.  His word has gone out of his mouth and he cannot lie, neither can that word be recalled: it must through eternity remain binding upon him.  We dare not, however, assert that we never do find it difficult in any sense of degree, for we often do -- all men often do.  But this is not because there is anything specially incredible or forbidding in his word; every thing about it is charming, convincing, fascinating.  It is in the sinner’s own mind that any difficulty lies.  He chooses not to believe in God, because he does not like him and is averse to his way.  Every holy mind finds it easy, delightfully easy, to trust in God with all its might.  With what sublime ease do “angels that excel in strength do his commandments, hearkening to the voice of his word!”  With what perfect ease do the spirits of just men made perfect minister to his pleasure!  And with what comparative ease do his people, even in this world, “run in the way of his commandments!”  True, Satan, the world, and the flesh conspire to make religion difficult and disagreeable.  Satan especially favours in us the idea that God is “a hard taskmaster;” and that, just because he knows that if men were only persuaded to try them, they would instantly find that “wisdom’s ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.”

2. Belief is easy compared with unbelief.  Unbelief is not easy; it is the very reverse.  From those who have heard the gospel for a long time, it takes hard work to keep it in its place.  They do not find it so easy to resist light, to quiet conscience, and defy God.  This is work which gives them many a twinge, many an agony; this causes them often more thought, more vexing cares, more forecastings of the dreaded future, more inward toil and trouble, than all the ills of life together.  Faith in a holy and kind God was once natural to the mind, and whatever is natural is pleasant.  Unbelief is a demon, and all mere disquietudes of the sinner are nothing else, depraved as nature now is, than her maddened efforts to exorcise him.  In the battle of unbelief no one ever came off a conqueror, for conscience will not, to the end of life, bear false witness to her Lord.  Victory, on the other hand, crowns every conflict of faith with light unclouded and with life everlasting.

3. Belief is easy compared with work.  Had work been proposed, and not faith, we might have preferred it.  Had God said, “I will pardon your sins --your souls shall be saved; only, as a condition, you must go and perambulate the earth, climb its mountains, and navigate its seas; you must go and tunnel the globe, cut and tear your flesh, slay your first-born, and offer as a sacrifice the pleasant fruits of all your harvests:”  some might have thought these things practicable, and because the order to do them pays a compliment to human pride, they might have attempted them.  But simply because our Father annexes to the salvation of our deathless souls kindly faith in his own Son, it is complained of as neither reasonable nor easy; and yet easier all would find such faith to be than to do these or any other works such as God could accept.  The doleful tenants of monasteries and nunneries can testify to this; the wearied and mortified builders of a Babel righteousness can testify to this; the last struggles and malisons of a dying hour all testify to this -- that no hope ever rises over the tumbling ruins of a house that has been reared on the sands of time, and that no song is ever sung as the chafed and startled spirit passes out of it into the presence of the Judge of all.  

4.  Belief is easy compared with what Christ himself had to do.  He had all the obeying, travailing, suffering, dying; we only have to put our trust in him and in his work.  We resemble the spectators of a princely work of architecture: its plans and its construction belong to other hands; the pleasure, the profit of seeing it and using it belong to us.  Few can write a great poem, but all may read and enjoy one.  The genius, patriotism, and unselfishness of a great statesman may prove the salvation of the commonwealth; but the citizens thereof simply partake of this quiet prosperity.  How comes it then that we cannot see Christ’s work and our faith in it in such a light?  What shall we say?  What is it that prevents us from arising and casting off all unbelief, and putting on all faith?  Let this be our determined purpose -- to habituate ourselves to realize Christ as a real, actual, living person.  It is just possible that we have been all along dwelling too much upon the abstractions or doctrines of our religion, and too little on its persons -- on God as our holy and loving Father, on Jesus as our able and willing Saviour, and on the Holy Ghost as our sanctifier and comforter.  Now, we should reverse this.  We should labour to become quite familiar with these divine friends; and specially should it be our constant aim to reproduce Christ constantly and endearingly to our minds as a real and precious Saviour, and far more valuable to us than the dearest earthly friend we have.  It is impossible we can err in our conceptions here; it is all so true, and he is all so lovely.  We will find it far easier to realize him than to apprehend a doctrine -- that it is more natural to draw to a living loving heart than to a truth, however beautiful in system or sentiment -- that it is more satisfactory to have intercourse with what can speak to us, smile upon us, bless us, than merely to sympathize with a grand idea, or be able to unravel all mysteries.  Applied to Christ, how true is all this!  There never was so real, so ardent, a friend as he was, never such an eloquent advocate on our behalf; and there never can be such another Saviour.  O, if beauty of expression, if perfect symmetry of form, if distinctness of purpose, if brilliancy of action, if ocean-like fulness of love, if speech of surpassing melody, if awful holiness of soul and life, if untiring activity, if transparent unselfishness, if, we know not how many magnificent traits and munificent displays of mercy -- if these and many other such glorious characteristics do not make it alike simple and easy to call up at any moment of calm reflection the lovely person and matchless work and worth of Christ, we know not how it can be possible for any man to recall the features or actions of any friend, we know not how memory can ever be able to do her proper service in the claims of gratitude, nor how love can ever shed her affections over the hearts that pant for them.  Thus reflecting, it seems to us that if we cannot easily bring up Jesus Christ to our mind’s eye, accompany him in his pleasing or painful walk, and assure ourselves of our actual personal interest in him and in them, that the sentiment of friendship among men is a dream, that the office of gratitude is a sinecure, and that the confidences and concords of loving hearts are all fictions or shams.  Were we speaking in the hearing of a wife whose husband, or of a mother whose boy is now upon the deep deep sea; we might appeal to such if they ever find it difficult, as they sit alone in the secret chamber or lie awake in the midnight hour, while wailing winds are blowing or winter storms are raging, to reproduce at once before them the very image of the loved one, and to feel as if they were in his very presence, and could clasp him in the fond embrace.  Why then, O why, should it be deemed a difficult or impossible thing thus to think of, thus to value, thus to realize the only, the one only being in God’s great universe, who pitied us in our lost estate, and died once for all that we might live for ever!

And now, in the last place, in order to live anew unto God we have only to believe, and --

        VI. That is final.  The end of a matter is often said to be gained while as yet the initiatory step has only been taken.  And again, a thing is said to be as good as done when a fair start has been made.  Even so is it with faith and the salvation which it secures. In that moment in which we believe, we have everlasting life.  Jesus told Nicodemus that “whosoever believeth hath,” not may have or shall have, but hath, “everlasting life” -- hath it even now in the germ, or in the title that infefts us into it.  It is so with the heir: he may be a minor, but he hath the estate, legally and really too; only, he must attain his majority before he can independently enjoy it.  When then we say that believing is final, we simply mean that our eternal life is thereby secured.  The grand object may be said then to be accomplished.  We seize our pardon, we are certified of purity and perfection, and we are entitled to our place and our throne in heaven.  In the interval between faith and sight we may have many trials, difficulties, and dangers; but our right to the inheritance of saints is absolutely and for ever established.  It is recognized by our heavenly Father now, and will be publicly admitted in that day when he maketh up his jewels.  The certainty of all this is so fixed in the purpose and goodness of God as to justify us in designating that faith as the finale to all kinds of peril.  It is just so final that for us no more atonements on Christ’s part, and no more conversions or effectual callings on ours, shall be required.  Not another good work of any kind whatever shall be demanded of our surety, and no repetition of our first and final act of faith shall be possible.  By that one act of faith in that one atonement we have possessed our souls of life and immortality; not that we shall not continue to believe and to do good works to the end of our life, but that all such things are mere sequences of the great first cause of all -- even faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  When one full fountain serves to fill the channel, and when that fountain is ever flowing, it is not needed to open other fountains; the one will suffice.  When one good meal satisfies hunger, there is no need for another immediately to follow it.  When one application of the remedy effects the cure, its repetition is uncalled for; and so, when we only believe, all is done -- it is final.  Progress there may, there must be, but the ultimatum is secured -- even eternal life; and this is the only ultimatum of which as much can be said. As much cannot be affirmed of any human plan or prospect; after doing our best, our all, we may fail.  There is an infant: we may strive to train him up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and all may promise well for the future, but he may turn out worthless.  There is a book: we may read it, and think over it and understand it, and yet we may be as good or bad at the end as at the beginning.  There is a business: we may work at it diligently, rise up early and sit late, and it may all go to wreck.  There is the recruit: he may go to drill and tramp ever so orderly on the parade, but when he comes to the battle-field he may turn his back to the foe.  But here is an ultimatum, here is a security, here is a final thing, here is faith in Christ, of which, when we see it in a man, we may safely declare that he is in heaven, or that heaven is in him, which is much the same.  He may have years of hard fighting, he may be in many a breach, he may even sometimes be seen to stumble and fall ; but he invariably rises again, and wins the victory at the last.  And yet, how strange it is, that although this is the only one thing in the future of which we are absolutely certain, and though all other things are notoriously uncertain, yet to the latter we strangely and doggedly turn, and leave the certain over till some more convenient time.  “O that we were wise, that we understood this, and would consider our latter end!” 

Since faith then is such a mighty, comprehensive, and final thing, let us not rest till we have it.  Like all other good and perfect gifts, it cometh from God -- it is eminently his gift, and he makes us as welcome to it as to his Son, whom it receives and in whom it reposes.  Let us ask it from him, seek for it, knock loud and often, till he hears and opens and bestows.  Let us not think that it is beyond our reach -- that it is too high, and that we cannot attain to it.  Let us only drop all unbelief, and admit the simple truth of Jesus and his atoning sacrifice, and as the Lord liveth we shall, we must be saved.  But without faith we can no more be saved than we can be saved without Christ himself.  We may accumulate during life riches, and learning, and fame, and power, but in the day of our death we will find all these to be useless -- absolutely useless.  If, however, at that solemn hour we are found only believing, we will die not only peacefully, but safely.  Nothing else can avail.  It is remarkable that even the finest scholars, when they come to die, shut their books, come down from their uppermost seats of learning, and simply refresh their souls by drawing water with the pitcher of their faith out of Christ, the only well of salvation.  They refuse every other confidence, they will embrace no other truth than the faithful saying that “Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners, even the chief.”  “You are dying,” said one to Dr. Whately, the late archbishop of Dublin, “you are dying as you lived, great to the last.”  “I am dying,” he replied, "as I lived, in the faith of Jesus.”  "What a blessing,” said one, “that your glorious intellect is unimpaired.”  “Do not call intellect glorious,” said the prelate, “there is nothing glorious out of Christ.”

“The great fortitude of your character,” it was said, “now supports you.”  “No,” replied the archbishop, “no; it is not my fortitude that supports me, but my faith in Christ.”  When the accomplished philosopher, Sir James Mackintosh, was near his end, his son whispered to him, “Your trust, father, is in God.”  “In Jesus,” was the reply; and so he passed away.  Even so let us all surrender our souls to him who died for us on the accursed tree; and when we too are made to confront death, judgement, and eternity, we shall find in our blissful experience that this is “the victory which overcometh the world, even our faith.”  Amen.                     -- J. M’Farlane, LL.D.




YOU have heard people say that every rule has its exceptions; that is, there are some cases where the rule does not hold.  Well, I suppose it must be so.  It is the case, at least, in regard to an old old rule, to which, judging by what we see, we should say there is no exception at all.  Indeed, the wisest of men has said in other words that there is no exception: for the exceptions were so very few and peculiar that they did not need to be taken account of.  Indeed, when Solomon said what I refer to, there had just been one.  Perhaps you are by this time wondering what I can be speaking about.  It is this: -- the old rule was laid down by God when he said to fallen Adam, Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.  Do I need to say that this rule applies to all?  Yet there have been exceptions; very few indeed, but some.  There have been two -- one in the world before the flood, and one since.  You could tell me at once the names of the two men who went away from earth without dying.  Will there ever be any more?  There will; for at Christ’s coming those who are alive will not die, but be changed.  And those who love Christ, and are looking for him, will go away from this world very much as the holy man went of whom I wish to tell you.  For they will be caught up along with the raised dead to meet the Lord in the air.

        The first exception to the stern rule of death, was that of Enoch.  He lived before the flood.  But the Bible does not tell us how he went away from the earth.  It simply says that he was not, for God took him.  The great poet Milton, makes a pretty picture of fancy about it.  He presents Enoch as rising in the midst of a council called for consideration of affairs, and speaking much about justice, and truth, and peace, and judgment from above, when young and old would have seized him and slain him --

“Had not a cloud descending snatched him thence,
              Unseen amid the throng.”

Afterwards he makes the angel Michael say to Adam to whom a vision of his had been shown: --

“Him the Most High,
Rapt in a balmy cloud with winged steeds,
Did, as thou saw’st, receive, to walk with God
High in salvation, and the climes of bliss.”

But the Bible itself tells us how the good man, whose case makes the second exception to the rule of death, was borne away from earth, and I am now to put in other words the beautiful story.

        The name of this good man, as you know, was Elijah. He was a prophet of the Lord, living in Israel at a time when the ten tribes were ruled by a weak king, whom his wicked wife made to do as she pleased.  He did many wonderful things, by the help of his God.  At last his work on earth was done.  But it pleased God not to take him to heaven by the usual road of death.  He carried him straight up into the sky.  This strange thing happened in the way I am now to tell you.

        Elijah had a friend and disciple who was to follow him in his work of bearing the messages of God to the people.  His name was Elisha.  He was very fond of his master.  Now one day when they were going together from a place where they had been, Elijah said to Elisha at a town to which they had come, Stop here, for I must go further.  But Elisha, who knew that God was calling his master away altogether, would not stay behind.  Several times Elijah wished him to remain, but he would not.  At length they came together to the bank of the river Jordan.  Standing to look at them there were fifty young prophets, to whom God had said that Elijah was to be taken away that day.  Now the river Jordan was at the place where there stood a deep broad stream, through which no one could wade.  What did Elijah do, when he wanted to go to the other side?  He took off his mantle, and wrapped it together, twisting it round, I suppose, and then he struck a blow with it on the waters, and they were divided so as to leave a passage on dry ground.  How strange it must have been to see a furrow stretch from bank to bank -- to see the water on one side, cut off as by a great knife, flow away down, while that on the other hand stood like a wall.  Then how curious it must have been for those fifty young men to see Elijah and Elisha walk across the bed of the river, and to observe how, as soon as they were over on the further bank, the river rushed on as before.  Why did Elijah take his mantle to smite the waters? Just as Moses took his rod.  The rod was the staff of office in Moses’ hands, and the sign of the power of God.  Now the mantle was the robe of office in the prophet’s case, and a stroke from the mantle was just like a voice from Elijah bidding the river part asunder in God’s great name.  Miracles, you see, of all kinds, and wrought in whatever way, come always to this; the power of God does all.

        After Elijah and Elisha had crossed Jordan they went on talking together, and Elijah said, Before I be taken away, what shall  do for you, Elisha?  What do you think Elisha asked?  Not wealth, not long life, but a double portion of his master’s spirit.  He wished to be a prophet like Elijah, and to be, as it were, his eldest son, to whom a double heritage was always given.  Elijah, knowing that only God could do this, but taught in his mind by the Holy Ghost what to say, answered that it was a hard thing that Elisha had asked; but if he should see his master when he was taken away, it would be as he wished.  So in a little time after that, as they walked over the plain, a chariot-like fire came between them; and Elijah was taken into the chariot, and in the midst of a great storm-wind rode away up to heaven.  As he went up, Elisha saw him, and cried out, My father, my father, the chariot and the horsemen of Israel!  While he was saying this, the mantle of Elijah floated down to the ground, and Elisha took it up very carefully. When the storm was past, and there was no more to be seen of his great master, he turned his steps back to Jordan.  He came to the brink of the water, and taking the prophet’s mantle he prayed to God, calling him the Lord God of Elijah, and smote the waters as his master had done.  The same effect took place as before.  Elisha walked across the bed of the Jordan, on dry ground, and the young men who were looking on cried out, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.”  So indeed it did rest, for Elisha after that wrought many great wonders -- gentle, kind, beautiful works -- great, like Elijah’s more in mercy than in judgment.

        Once, after he went to heaven, Eliah visited the earth.  He was sent down by God to meet with Jesus.  The place where they met was the top of a mountain.  Moses was also there; and Jesus took three of his disciples up with him.  While the three were together, their talk was about Christ’s death.  By this we know that what Moses wrote in the Bible, and what the prophets also wrote there, was to have its fulfilment in the cross of Jesus.  The Old Testament lifted up its finger to point to the Lamb of God who was to take away the sin of the world  Paul tells us of three good things that abide -- faith, hope, love.  I think they may be said to have met on that hill-top -- Moses represented faith; Elijah, as a great prophet, was like hope; Jesus was love. 



        1. Can you tell to what the New Testament says the going away of Enoch without death was owing?

        2. Where are we told that the dead in Christ will rise before the living are changed?

        3.  On which side of the Jordan was Elijah born?

        4. Where do you read of a prophet, other and earlier than Elijah, appearing with a mantle?

        5. Who, besides Elijah and Elisha, went through Jordan on dry ground?

        6.  When did any one cross a sheet of water without dividing it, or sinking in it?   

        7. Who besides Elijah, went up into heaven while those who called him Master were looking on?

        8. Elijah went in a whirlwind which carried him past death -- where do we read of a whirlwind which brought death?

        9. What were the names of the three disciples who were with Jesus, when he met with Moses and Elias?

        10. At what other times were these disciples with Jesus, in the absence of the rest?

ANSWERS to the foregoing questions will be found by consulting Heb. xi.; 1 Thess. iv.; 1 Kings xvii.; 1 Sam. xxvii.; Josh. iii.; Matt. xiv.; Acts i.; Job i.; Luke ix.; Mark v. and xiv.



        1. How many heathen nations did God cast out of Canaan to make way for his chosen people?  Deut. vii. 1.

        2. Were the Israelites allowed to form any covenants or alliances with these devoted nations?

        3. Why were they forbidden to form such alliances?

        4.  Are Christians at liberty to enter into such alliances with bad men as would involve approval of their evil deeds?  Deut. vii. 4; 1 Cor. v. 11.

        5.  Could the sacrifices which were offered under the law of Moses of themselves take away sin?

        6. Has the one offering of Jesus Christ made a perfect atonement for sin?

        7.  On the ground of Chris’s perfect sacrifice is forgiveness of sin secure to all believers?  Heb. x. 16, 17.

        8.  Believing in him, are we then warranted to come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need?  Heb. x. 22; iv. 16.



O GOD, who didst appoint unto men once to die on account of sin, we thank Thee that One has died who has taken away for all that trust in Him the sting of death.  Grant to us grace that we may trust in Him, and find when death comes to us, that it does us no hurt.  Grant that to us to live may be Christ, and to die gain.  This we ask for Jesus’ sake. Amen.



O THOU who knowest our frame, and rememberest that we are dust, who pitiest us as a father doth his children, have mercy on our manifold shortcomings and sinful infirmities, and so deliver us from all sins of the flesh and of the spirit, that we, being strong in Thee and in the power of Thy might, may in our weakness have Thy strength perfected, be enabled to endure hardness as good soldiers of Jesus Christ, and, finally, to be more than conquerors through Him that loved us. Amen.

HYMN, or Psalm lvi. 9-13.

BLESS’D be the dear uniting love
That will not let us part!
Our bodies may far off remove,
But we are join’d in heart. 

Join’d in one spirit to our Head,
We wait his will to know,
That we in all his steps may tread,
And do his work below.

O may we ever walk in Him,
And nothing know beside;
Nothing desire, nor aught esteem,
But Jesus crucified!

HEBREWS X. 1-22.

FOR the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices, which they offered year by year continually, make the comers thereunto perfect. 2. For then would they not have ceased to be offered?  because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. 3. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. 4. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats would take away sins. 5. Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: 6. In burnt-offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. 7. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will O God. 8. Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt-offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; (which are offered by the law;) 9. Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will O God.  He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. 10. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11. And every priest standeth daily ministering offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:  12. But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins, for ever sat down on the right hand of God; 13. From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. 14. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. 15. Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us, for after that he had said before, 16. This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts and in their minds will I write them; 17. And their iniquities will I remember no more. 18. Now, where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.  19. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20. By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; 21. And having an high priest over the house of God; 22. Let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.



AUTHOR of our being! under Thine own sanction we present ourselves before Thy awful throne: we have heard Thy commandment, and obey it; we know Thy will, and do it; we seek Thy face and favour, and find them both.  Blessed be Thy name, O thou Most High, for that Thy name is near Thy wondrous works declare. O help Thy children to adore Thee; show us Thy glory; and as Thou passest by open our ears to Thy declaration that Thou art the Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the impenitent; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and unto the fourth generations.  Teach us, O Lord, to know Thee, and to know Thy Son Jesus Christ, for this is eternal life.  We are not only naturally ignorant of Thee, but Thou art not in all our thoughts; yea, we are the enemies of the living God.  Placing ourselves at the feet of Jesus, we would eagerly imbibe the spirit of His sublime faith; may the same mind that was in Him be in us also.

        We thank and praise Thee for that holy book which contains Thy mind, which reveals Thy mercy in Christ toward us the sinful children of men.  O may the entrance of that word give light to our darkened understanding, softness to our hard hearts, and comfort to our distressed souls.  May we peruse its inspired pages with childlike simplicity and confidence, and take it all as Thy message to our poor, sinful, fallen world.  Give us the habit of daily searching the scriptures, and may we lay up their doctrines and commandments in our minds that we may practise them in our lives.  Bless to us also the preaching of Thy word by Thy ministering servants.  Thou hast highly favoured us this day by allowing us to assemble ourselves together in Thy sanctuary.  We have sung Thy praises, we have petitioned Thy throne, we have listened to Thy gracious word, and the offers of Thy mercy in Christ have been pressed upon our acceptance.  Surely we are a blessed people, to have heard the joyful sound of redeeming love.  Deeply impress upon us a sense of our responsibilities.  We have received much; and from us Thou wilt demand much.  O grant us grace to make suitable improvement of our religious means.  Dispose us to fall in with the overtures of Thy love, and, casting all our sins and cares on Jesus, may we now run with alacrity and joy in the way of Thy statutes.  Father, forgive what Thou hast seen amiss in our conduct when in Thy courts.  We confess to many foolish thoughts, to many wandering imaginations, and even to many shameful doubtings.  Wash us after sanctuary duties, and enable us hereafter to watch carefully over our spirits when we call upon Thy name. 

        O God! sanctify to us our sabbath-day feast.  May we feel ourselves to be more spiritually strong, and more than ever heavenly-minded, when we have been made partakers of the bread and of the waters of life.  Above all, O Lord our God, cause our sabbath services to increase our faith in and love to Jesus.  May we feel our comfort in His righteousness taking deeper root in our hearts, and our love to Himself and to His cause habitually becoming more and more ardent.  O constrain us by this love to live, not to ourselves, but to Him who died for us and rose again.  Help us to count all things but loss for His excellent knowledge, and make us willing to spend and be spent in His service.  O make us holy as He is holy, and perfect as He is perfect.

        We unite in commending to Thy mercy all Thy ministering servants at home and abroad who have this day been proclaiming the unsearchable riches of Christ.  Let there be joy in heaven this evening, because of repenting sinners.  O have mercy on the heathen who know Thee not, and whose sacrifices are offered to devils, and not to Thee.  Thy kingdom come.  Remove all the obstacles that are now in the way of the triumphs of the cross.  Bring the delusions of Mahommed, the superstitions of the Hindoo, and the unbelief of the Jews, to a speedy end.  O give Thy Son the heathen for His inheritance, and the uttermost ends of the earth for His possession.  Let our Saviour see of the travail of His soul, and be satisfied.

        We beseech Thee, O our God, for all who are in any trouble.  Heal the sick, provide for the poor, comfort the afflicted, and save the dying.  May all mundane sorrows and vicissitudes work together for their and our good.  May we arise and depart from worldly-mindedness and all sin when Thou speakest, whether in Thy word or in Thy providence.  O elevate our affections: we are prone to bury them in the earth; do Thou set them and keep them upon Thyself, and after we have, in Thy mercy, served Thee in our generation humbly and faithfully, may we receive the end of our faith, even the salvation of our souls.

        And, O our merciful God, let all our friends and relatives, wherever they may be, share in the blessings which we have now implored from Thy gracious hand.  May we be all so bound together by the ties of grace, that, when the ties of nature are broken, we may be reunited in heaven to be parted no more.  Upon the unconverted, if there are such, and especially upon the children and the rising generation, pour out Thine influences.  O let none near and dear to our hearts perish.  May they be all saved.  May the lambs of the flock be carried in Thine own bosom, preserved for Thine own glory, and blessed now and for ever with Thine own love and truth.  O covenant-keeping God, remember that Thy promise is to us and to our seed.  Receive then our little ones, and lay Thy hands upon them, and pray for them.  May we never have cause to grieve through their faults; and when we are called to heaven may we all be found there at Thy right hand, not one of the family amissing.

        And now we commend us to Thy keeping during the hours of unconscious existence.  May the Shepherd of Israel, who slumbers not nor sleeps, watch over us and keep us from all evil; and when we awake in the morning, may we find ourselves still with God.  Hear us, O Lord, and do, and defer not, for the sake of Him whom Thou always hearest.  Amen.





        Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.

        Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, long-suffering.

        And above all these things, put on charity.

        Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 

        And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

                1 Cor. viii. 1       Col. iii. 12, 14.       1 Cor. xiii. 1,2.


Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil.

Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. 

                          1 Cor. xiii. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.



        Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

        From which some having swerved, have turned aside unto vain jangling;

        Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.

        Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

        1. Tim. i. 5, 6, 7.          1.Tim. iv. 12.


        But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:

        That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.

        And besides this, giving all diligence, add to your faith, virtue; and to virtue, knowledge;

        And to knowledge, temperance; and to temperance, patience; and to patience, godliness;

        And to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, charity.

                       Tit. ii. 1,2.         2 Pet. i. 5, 6, 7.



        Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

        Evil shall slay the wicked; and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.

        Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you; because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.

        He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.

        He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him:

        But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.

Lev. xix. 17.        Ps. xxxiv. 21.      1. John. ii. 8, 9, 10, 11.


        For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another.

        In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.

        For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning that we should love one another.

        Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother.  And wherefore slew he him?  Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous.

                    Tit. iii. 3.        1. John. iii. 10, 11, 12.



        If thou meet thine enemy’s ox or his ass going astray, thou shalt surely bring it back to him again.

        If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee lying under his burden, and wouldest forbear to help him; thou shalt surely help with him. 

        For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:

        But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

        Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.

        Have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

     Exod. xxiii. 4, 5.     Mat. vi. 14, 15.      Ps. xxxvii. 1.      1 Pet. iv. 8.


        Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

        Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.

        For evil doers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.

        For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.

        But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. 

Ps. xxxvii. 7, 8, 9, 10, 11.



        Let not thine heart envy sinners: but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long.

        For surely there is an end; and thine expectation shall not be cut off.

        Be not thou envious against evil men, neither desire to be with them;

        For their heart studieth destruction, and their lips talk of mischief.

        For so is the will of God, that with well-doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.

        Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

Prov. xxiii. 17, 18.      Prov. xxiv. 1, 2.      1 Peter ii. 15.      2 Tim. ii. 22.


        Woe to him that coveteth an evil covetousness to his house, that he may set his nest on high.

        Righteousness art thou, O Lord, when I plead with thee; yet let me talk with thee of thy judgements: wherefore doth the way of the wicked prosper? Wherefore are all they happy that deal very treacherously?

        Thou hast planted them; yea, they have taken root: they grow; yea, they bring forth fruit: thou art near in their mouth, and far from their reins.

        For there are no bands in their death; but their strength is firm.

        Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.

Hab. ii. 9.   Jer. xii. 1, 2.    Ps. lxxiii. 4, 6.



        For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

        If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I should offend against the generation of thy children.

        When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me,

        Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.

        Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction.

        How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! They are utterly consumed with terrors.

Ps. lxxiii. 3, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.


        Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?

        Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.

        For the froward is abomination to the Lord; but his secret is with the righteous.

        The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.

        Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly.

        The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.

James iv. 5.   Prov. iii. 31, 32, 33, 34, 35.

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