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dering about in sheep skins and goat skins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented, or were cruelly put to death. But while the Nazarenes suffered, their doctrines spread and prospered ; and multitudes became obedient unto the faith. But at length professors began to compromise with the world, to mix the water of human ceremonies with the wine of gospel ordinances; to mingle the doctrines of the heathen with the doctrines of Christ; and the result was, the sword of the Spirit lost its edge, and the world gave up its opposition to what was now become another gospel; and the sect that had been every where spoken against, with the exception of a few, was swallowed up in a worldly church. The crown was lost, the honour was forfeited, and punishment and rejection followed.
But there were always some, who had not defiled their garments, who would not mingle among the heathen, or conform to their ways. Some who clave to Jesus, held fast his doctrine, and sought to do him honour. These were the objects of hatred, not to the heathen only, but to the worldly church, and these have been called to suffer for the truth, more or less. There are still some, who, like the ancient sect of the Nazarenes, are every where spoken against. They will not swim with the stream. They will not compromise their Master's honour, give up their Master's truth, or change their Master's or. dinances. According to the light they have, they walk ; and they rejoice to exalt the Saviour, humble the sinner, and proclaim salvation, all of grace. Spoken against they are, they will be ; but while they maintain an honest conscience, enjoy the peace of God, and experience the comforts of the Holy Ghost; they can rejoice that they are counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.
Reader, do you belong to this sect P Is there any thing in your religion that is distasteful to the world, any thing that draws forth its opposition, or excites its contempt? The carnal mind is still enmity against God, and if we are godlike, and how can we be Christians without? but if we are godly, that enmity will manifest itself against us. If we believe Christ's gospel as it is to be found in his word ; if we copy Christ's example, as set before us in the gospel; if we testify againt the world, that the works of it are evil, and call upon it to repent, as Christ did, we shall soon be spoken against. We shall be ranked with them who would turn the world upside down. We shall be called enthusiasts, or hypocrites, or saints, or by some name intended to express contempt. But if we be reproached for the sake of Christ, happy are we; for the Spirit of glory and of God resteth upon us ; on their part he is evil spoken of, but on our part he is glorified. If any man will live godly in Christ Jesus, he shall suffer persecution. If, therefore, our religion is palatable to the world, if it awakens no un
pleasant remarks, if it calls forth no opposi. tion, if it occasions us no loss in our reputa. tion, or property, or social standing, there is some reason to suspect whether it be genuine and apostolic One thing is clear, account for it how we may, we do not belong to that sect that is everywhere spoken against.
Great Leader of thine Israel's host,
We shout thy conquering name;
Änd legions fled with shame.
A victory glorious and complete
Thou by tby death didst gain;
And death itself sustain.
We no extremes would fear;
If thou, O Lord, be near.
To triumph and renown;
May we but share thy crown.
SLEEPING IN JESUS.
THERE is always something solemn in death, and the circumstances connected with death, are often very painful. The sufferings of the body, the occasional loss of reason, the separation from near relatives, and dear friends, are at times very distressing. But death itself, it is not to be looked upon as an evil, any more than sleep is. The true Christian lives in union with Jesus, suffers in union with Jesus, and dies in union with Jesus. As united to Jesus, to him there is no condemnation, for he is fully and for ever justified; therefore he is delivered from all the penal consequences of sin, and the very nature of death is changed. “He that liveth, and believeth in me,” said Jesus, “shall never die.” And again, “He that keepeth my sayings, shall never see death.” Death to the believer is,
Rest. Sweet rest. Rest for the body in the grave, and rest for the soul in the presence of Jesus. It is rest after toil, the labour of the body for temporal good, and the labour of the soul for spiritual. Much work, and hard work, has the Christian now, but it will soon be over; and of such Christian labourers, it will be said, “Blessed are the dead, which die in the Lord from henceforth : yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.” It is rest after suffering, and how much some of the Lord's people suffer. What bodily affilictions. What domestic trials. What reverses in the world. What severe conflicts, and exercises of soul! Some seldom eat with pleasure, or sleep soundly, or know what earthly pleasure is. To such, death will be a delightful rest, for then, “ their sun will no more go down, but the days of their mourning will be ended.” It will be rest, after a long and wearisome jour. ney. The Christian finds the present world a wilderness, a desert, an enemy's country. The way is rough and rugged. The journey is exhausting and discouraging. The changes are numerous and great. The seasons are changeable and trying. He is often dis. heartened because of the way. But at death the journey ends. The wilderness is crossed. The land of rest, promised rest, lies spread out before him, and he realizes the pleasing fact, that he is going to take possession. He then enters into the rest that remaineth for the people of God. It is rest after conflict,as a soldier of the cross he has had to do battle with sin, with self, with the world, and with principalities and powers in heavenly places. Many a wound has he received. From many a bruise has he suffered. Long, tedious, and