Sidor som bilder

dom is not of this world, (else) would my servants fight.'

“ What have the wealth, or the splendour, or the talents, of the world, ever accomplished in favour of genuine religion? or what are they accomplishing at this moment? If we turn to the magnificent biographies of those who are already gone to give an account of this momentous concern at the bar of the final Judge; or follow up their successors into the witty or the fashionable circles of our own day-how small is the aggregate of their contributions! A precious example of genuine piety, issuing from the one or the other of these sources, is occasionally to be traced in the horizon, illuminating the surrounding opake with its refreshing lustre, as though to shew that such a meteor is possible; while the general body seem spellbound, for the purpose of verifying our Saviour's declaration, ‘My kingdom is not of this world.'

It was so in his day, and it will be so to the end of time. What was the furniture of the first evangelists, and how were they caparisoned for the combat ? • Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass, in your purses, nor scrip for your journey ; neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves.—Take no thought how or what ye shall speak; for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.'*

“And so it was from the beginning. When God led forth his people from Egypt, it was entirely a work of special providence. In the barren wilderness they multiplied as the stars in the firmament for number; their clothes waxed not old upon them, nor their shoes were worn out by journeying: the heavens rained down

* Matt. x 9, 10, 19.

food, and the flinty rock poured forth water. But chiefly was the great principle manifested, that “the kingdom of God is not of this world,' when they were on the point of entering the land of Canaan, and of measuring their strength with that fearful enemy, whose name alone had cowed the hearts of their fathers only forty years before, from the false representation that they were giants in stature, and defended by towns whose walls reached up to the heavens. The whole passage, as related in the book of Joshua, is full of a simplicity and a majesty unrivalled in any other volume, and rarely equalled in the bible itself. In the face of this formidable people, who, aware of their approach, and in league with every adjoining power, were drawn up in a line of defence, they were commanded to march forward to the banks of the wide and impetuous Jordan, at that time overflowing its sides from the vernal floods of the neighbouring mountains, and to cross the river. The whole army was instantly in motion; prepared at all hazards to obey the call, though they had neither rafts nor pontoons, nor any other visible means of coping with the stream. It was the voice of Jehovah that gave the word; and in the power of Jehovah they put their trust. They were nobly resolved to do their utmost and to leave the issue in the hands of the God of Israel. It was enough; and those who act thus are always safe. We have no claim to expect the interposition of Providence, if we do not make use of every exertion for ourselves : and then may be most sure of it when we have been most unwearied in our efforts.

+ Num. xiii. 28.

Deut. i. 28.

The army of Israel, and the multitudes of the entire nation who were with them, their wives and their little ones, being thus prepared and full of expectation, were suddenly ordered to halt. And to shew how little God stands in need of human power and human prowess, and that the means of carrying forward his kingdom are not of this world--the ark by itself is commanded to take the lead, sustained on the shoulders of a few unarmed Levites alone, while the army and the people are forbidden to approach it within the distance of half a mile.

In this manner marched forward the procession; the unarmed ark protecting the men of war, instead of the men of war protecting the unarmed ark.

In this manner was it that the waters of Jordan fled,* like lambs, at the presence of the divine symbol: and the hostile country on the other side its banks was invaded, and fell prostrate before its mighty and irresistible influence.

“What a consolation does this subject offer to every missionary undertaking of the present day, founded upon just principles, and simply actuated by a humble but zealous endeavour to extend the boundaries of that kingdom which is not of this world. How fully doth it open to us the only path in which we are to tread, and the only armour we are to display. All human means must be resorted to that lie within our reach, suggested by prudence and sanctified by prayer. Yet,

* Psalm cxiv. 5. + On contrasting this language with Dr. Good's notes on parts of the book of Joshua, (p. 358) and endeavouring to account for so essential a difference, we must recur, for the only solution, to the Psalmist—“This is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes.”

even these are to be but auxiliaries, and kept in the back-ground, while, as to the world, its wealth and its talents are but little needed ; and its pomp and its dominion are the worst allies we can engage on our behalf. Without the ark of the Lord—the Lord of all the earth 1-no enterprise can be successful: but let this go before us, and success is certain, whatever difficulties may obstruct our way: ‘When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and, through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee.'3—Who art thou, O great mountain ?-before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain.'||— Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.'**

“This high tone of feeling, this truly evangelical spirit, has, happily for us, and for the entire globe, at length been seized, and is acting upon; and the promises of God are in every quarter maintaining their veracity.”


July 27th, 1823.41

“Which I purpose to use among others, every morning, so long as it may please God that I shall continue in the exercise of my profession; and which is here

| Josh. iii. 13. § Isa. xliii. 2. || Zech. iv. 7.

** Ibid. 6. # A few days before the death of his beloved son-in-law, Mr. Neale. For several years the spirit of this prayer was fully exemplified in Dr. Good's practice. The sympathy he manifested for his patients was of the highest order. When he prescribed, he was in the habit of praying for Divine direction; on administering a medicine himself, he was often known to utter a short ejaculatory prayer; and, in cases where a fatal issue was inevitable, he most scrupulously avoided the cruel delusion too common on such occasions, but with the utmost delicacy and feeling announced his apprehensions.

copied out, not so much to assist my own memory, as to give a hint to many who may perhaps feel thankful for it when I am removed to a state where personal vanity can have no access, and the opinion of the world can be no longer of any importance. I should wish it to close the subsequent editions of my 'Study of Medicine.'

“Othou great bestower of health, strength, and comfort! grant thy blessing upon the professional duties in which this day I may engage. Give me judgment to discern disease, and skill to treat it; and crown with thy favour the means that may be devised for recovery; for, with thine assistance, the humblest instrument may succeed, as, without it, the ablest must prove unavailing.

“Save me from all sordid motives; and endow me with a spirit of pity and liberality towards the poor, and of tenderness and sympathy towards all; that I may enter into the various feelings by which they are respectively tried; may weep with those that weep, and rejoice with those that rejoice.

“And sanctify thou their souls, as well as heal their bodies. Let faith and patience, and every christian virtue they are called upon to exercise, have their perfect work: so that in the gracious dealings of thy Spirit and of thy providence, they may find in the end, whatever that end may be, that it has been good for them to have been afflicted.

Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the love of that adorable Redeemer, who, while on earth, went about doing good, and now ever liveth to make intercession for us in heaven. Amen."

« FöregåendeFortsätt »