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said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee : go, and sin no more.
“He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a' stone at her" Well would it be for the world, if the spirit of this sentence were more generally felt and acted on; if those who are themselves guilty would pass judgments of less unnecessary severity on their offending brethren. Let those laws which are established for the punishment of crime, be executed with all needed strictness ; let those usages of society be retained and enforced, by which the abandoned are excluded from the society of those they might corrupt : but let mercy unite with justice in our judgments of our fellow men. At least, as individuals, let us be willing to think as favourably of all, as may be possible. Have not we ourselves offended? Should we not therefore, sympathize with others, even though guilty? If we be forgiving to them, we have the best hope of mercy from our God, for “the merciful shall obtain mercy.”
Conscious of frailty, may we yield
And when our own offences weigh
CURE OF A BLIND MAN.
JOHN IX 1. AND 13. And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents ; but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day : the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay ; and said unto him, Go wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is, by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.
They brought to the Pharisees him that aforetime was blind. And it was the Sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes. Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see. Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the Sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles ? And there was a division among them. They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes ? He said, He is a prophet. But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and received his sight, until they called the parents of him that had received his sight. And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind ? How then doth he now see? His parents answered them and said, we know that this is our son, and that he was born blind : but by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not : he is of age, ask him ; he shall speak for himself. Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise : we know that this man is a sinnner. He answered and said, whether he be a sinner or no, I know not : one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see. They reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple, but we are Moses' disciples. We know that God spake unto Moses ; as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.
“For judgment,” said Jesus “I am come into this world ; that they which see not, might see, and that they which see might be made blind ;' nor could a more striking instance of intentional blindness have been exhibited, than in the conduct of the Pharisees on this occasion. The man who has been restored to sight, stands before them. They have the testimony of his parents, as well as others, to the fact of his previous blindness, even from birth. But they shut their eyes against the conclusion; and fly to that resort, so common when reason fails, violence of words and conduct. And is there no voluntary blindness in us? When the book of God is within the reach of every one, while thousands are yet ignorant of what it requires, are they not voluntarily blind? Are we not chargeable with wilful blindness when painful but improving thoughts are in any manner elicited, and we turn impatiently away to some more pleasing subject; when we shake off the conviction that we are doing wrong, and continue in our conduct? Are we not voluntarily blind while a single foible remains undetected, of whose existence we should have been conscious, had we searched with sufficient care? May God open our eyes to our own defects, to the importance of amendment, to the glory and loveliness of his own perfect character!
Oh Thou whose power o'er moving worlds presides,
'Tis thine alone to calm the pious breast,
TO THE MISSION OF THE TWELVE.
JESUS AT NAZARETH.
LUKE IV. 14. And Jesus returned in the power of the spirit into Galilee : and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all. And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up : and, as his custom was on the Sabbath day, he went into the synagogue, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias ; and when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind ; to set at liberty them that are bruised ; to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears. And all