Sidor som bilder

revengeful action. We are all born in sin, with evil natures, and bad hearts." What, all! uncle ?” exclaimed Kate, “ has every one an evil heart by nature ?" “Every person who is born into the world,” replied Gleeson. “Many a one is ready to allow, in general terms, that we are all sinners ;' but when you come to bring it home to themselves, they will shift off the question and say, 'I never robbed or murdered—I never wronged any one-I have a good heart.' This was what I thought myself a long time, and imagined all was right and safe with me." * Well, and what was it changed your opinion ?" asked Tom. " It was just these words that I met when I was studying my Irish Bible, The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the people that forget God. Forget God, thought I, how often I forget Him; forget to thank Him, to pray to Him, to search out and inform myself of his wishes, to obey Him in every thing. The words rang in my ears, "turned into hell! all the people that forget God. I became 'alarmed, and inquired anxiously as to my state. Then I found out how evil was my heart, by watching it well and examining every thought. “And what did you do?” inquired Kate. “ I earnestly begged of God to direct me, and I studied his word with attention. It informed me of the nature of God, and the office of the three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. God the Father to create us ; God the Son, to redeem us from the punishment of our sins; God the Holy Ghost, to sanctify or make us holy. I found out that before the sinner can please God, or obey Him, he must be changed, by losing his old bad heart, and getting in its stead a new clean one. The change is so complete, that it is called being 'born again ;' unless it takes place we cannot enter heaven. Our Saviour's words are, · Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.'”

“ But how can a man be changed ?-how can a man get this clean new heart instead of the old one ?” said Tom.

" By asking for it," said his uncle. « The Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit, is the means appointed to change our evil hearts, or hearts of stone,' as they are called in Scripture. The Spirit sanctifies or makes us

[ocr errors]

holy, fills us with good thoughts and desires, instead of bad ones; makes us love God instead of rebelling against Him, and love each other instead of living in ill will together. Ought we not then to cry earnestly for the Holy Spirit? Here is our encouragement to do so. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth ; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he, for a fish, give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion ? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?!” “ Nothing can be more plain or more encouraging than this, at all events,” observed Lawrence. Yes," said Gleeson, "and they are the words of our Saviour; that gives them their value, for on no others could we depend.” “There is another beautiful promise, respecting a new heart, and the Holy Spirit, which you have not mentioned, uncle," said Lawrence. “I mean this one: 'A new heart will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you; and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of Aesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes; and ye shall keep my judgments, and do

them; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God!"" “Oh!" exclaimed Kate, " that is, indeed, delightful; I could listen for ever to such words as those.” “I

suppose then, from all you have said, uncle," said Tom to the schoolmaster, after he had considered a little ; " I suppose, if the woman had gone to you instead of the old man, you would have advised her to pray to God for a new heart, and the Holy Spirit.” “Exactly so," answered Gleeson; " I should have said to her what our Saviour did to his disciples— Watch and pray;' pray for God's grace and assistance, and watch the first risings of evil in your heart that you may subdue them." " That advice would apply to us all, as well as to the poor woman,” remarked Lawrence; “how humbly the great King David, who was

called the man after God's own heart,' prayed to be renewed. Create in me a clean heart, O God,' he said, and renew a right spirit within me !" " " That is a good prayer indeed, Lawrence," said his uncle, "we ought all to make use of it frequently. And now that you mention King David, I am reminded of another of his prayers, which exactly applies to the subject we are speaking of. It is this - Šet a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.' If we were to utter that with our whole hearts every morning before we left our doors, or entered on the business of the day, we should not have so many hasty, angry, or unkind words to reproach ourselves with when we lie down at night.” “ I should like to learn both of those prayers, and to say them very often,” thought Tom within himself, but he said nothing; Kate likewise resolved in her own mind, that before she closed her eyes in sleep that night, she would kneel down and pray to God to give her a new heart, and his Holy Spirit.- From A Visit to Clarina."

Sent by a Correspondent.


At the triennial meeting of the Salisbury Diocesan Church Building Society, held last week at Salisbury, the Lord Bishop of the diocese said, there was an anecdote connected with the building of the church at Whitchurch Canonicorum, which he could not forbear relating: “The first proposal for this undertaking (said his lordship) was made to me soon after I became bishop, by a farmer in that neighbourhood, of the name of James. He was a man not of the more opulent, rather, I believe, of the humbler class; nor did either his appearance or manner indicate any thing superior to that ordinarily found in his sphere of life. But he felt deeply the privation under which he and his neighbours laboured in their separation from the house of God, and the means of grace provided therein. He lamented to see many around him falling into ungodliness and disregard of all religion ; others supplying the want for themselves in an irregular manner, by forming conventicles of one or another denomination of dissent. His heart was stirred within him to endeavour if by any means this want could be removed. He exerted himself among those with whom he was connected, and his neighbours generally, and obtained promises of assistance to a considerable extent. He came to me at Salisbury from the furthest part of Dorsetshire, bringing with him a map of the parish and the neighbouring district, drawn by himself very clearly and accurately, in order to demonstrate the want, and a subscription-list amounting to 4001., raised by his almost unaided efforts; and, indeed, in the face of the opposition of some, from whom he might naturally have expected encouragement and help; and to this he had himself contributed the sum of 501. I think I am stating these things correctly; but I am speaking only from memory, and after the lapse of some years. There were greater difficulties to be surmounted than I have ever known to occur in a similar case,- legal and technical objections of various kinds, consents necessary to be had, but impossible to obtain,so that, in spite of my best efforts, the business made no progress for nearly two years; but still this earnestminded man was not disheartened. He wrote to me from time to time. He came once to London to see me on the subject. He said he would draw stone and begin building himself, if I would only promise to consecrate the building when raised. At length all obstacles were overcome, and the building was commenced, and advanced rapidly towards its completion. But in the mysterious providence of the Almighty it was not to be permitted to its zealous projector to see the labour of his own hands, to rejoice in his work. He was taken ill, and died a short time-I believe a few weeks only-before the termination of that work which he had so long and so earnestly desired to behold. But were his efforts therefore thrown away? No: rather was his work finished, and he was taken to his reward; and if he was not allowed to worship in the courts of God's tabernacle on earth, may we not humbly trust that he joined in purer worship and in more joyful strains in the blessed company of the saints who rest in the Lord ?"-Weekly Paper.

RICHMOND PROVIDENT AND CLOTHING CLUB. Six hundred families last year enjoyed the advantages of this institution ; orders for clothing to the amount of 4741. 2s. 9d. were issued, of which upwards of 401. was paid for shoes, and upwards of 601. for boys' coats and suits of clothes, whereby the regularity of attendance at school, and decent appearance of 300 children, was promoted. The number of members continuing their deposits is 640, and the weekly payments now average 121. Among the articles purchased by the members were :50 blankets, 172 pairs of shoes, 75 boys' coats and jackets, 33 waistcoats, 63 pairs of trousers, 1 bed and 1 bedstead, 6 cloaks, 42 shawls, 464 pairs of stockings and socks, 387 yards of sheeting, 6794 yards of flannel, 23724 yards of calico, 431 yards of stuff, and 926 yards

of print.

Comparative Statement, showing the progressive Increase of the Club.

Sums repaid

Interest No. of Honorary Weekly Orders for for Rent or allowed on MemSubscriptions. Deposits. Clothing. Debts. Mem.'s Deps. bers.

8. d. £ 8. d. £ d. £ 8. d. £ 8. d. 1837-8 ...... 34 7 4

113 19 4 101 944 19 3 93 18 14 41 287 1838–9 ......

9 0 221

9 21 223 0 7 39 4 05 89 2 10 404 1839–40...... 35 10 6 316 18 2 288 6 11 67 18 2 45 17 9} A74 1840-1

6 369 1 11 355 7 5 61 15 1 54 18 2 520 1841-2 53 4 0 468 18 7 474 2 9 68 14 4 73 18 6 634


...... 56 8

[blocks in formation]

We are happy to find that the laws have lately been put in force to punish and restrain the publication of books and papers of a blasphemous tendency. Many persons are not aware that such laws exist, and this is because they have been so seldom vigorously executed, while the streets of many of our towns are disgraced by the open exhibition, in the shop windows, of most horrible and destructive books for sale. Nevertheless there are such laws in the statute-book of this kingdom; and they are so high an honour to it, that every Christian will hope that they may never be repealed. They only require to be actively and generally carried into force ; and it is the duty not only of the magistrate to punish, but of every

« FöregåendeFortsätt »