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his friends, and all the blessings showered on him by the hand of his heavenly Father, dear-Oh how deeply, fondly dear to him! But he who had "delivered him from the power of darkness," was before all things in his sight; "Christ was all, and in all" to him; and the glory which shall be revealed "When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe" was the joyful theme of his lips, and the hope that animated him through this world's wilderness, and the secret of the calm and sweet serenity that marked his countenance as he said to me "I am going home." But mark,--and this is a deeply essential point,—he was not going home in his own strength, O no,-" leaning on his beloved," he found the road to Zion, (though through an enemy's county) a "way of pleasantness and a path of peace."
Oh my dear friends, who may read this little account of the triumph of the believer, "meditate on these things." Though various are the paths of life, there is but one way home, and since this world is not, cannot be your rest, "Seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God," and then only, "when Christ who is our life shall appear then shall ye also appear with him in glory."
"Thanks be unto God which always causeth us to triumph in Christ."
Rev. H. A. Smcon, Ponheale-Press, Cornwał,
What tongue is able to express these pleasures and delights which are laid open to us in the word of God? We buy images, and pictures, and maps of men, and divers things and countries; but what map of picture can shew us the like variety and change of things.
We purchase lands, and have liking so to do. Here we are taught how we may come to that land, which shall stand with us, and in which we shall coutinue for ever.
To see any one of these it were great pleasure, either the creation of heaven and earth, or the angels
and archangels, and blessed spirits; or the battles of the God of Sabaoth; or Amalek dashed in pieces like a potter's vessel; or the walls of Jericho blown down with the sound of a trumpet; or Pharaoh drowned in the sea; or Nebuchadnezzar eating grass among the beasts; or Antiochus smitten from heaven; or Sodom and Gomorrah burnt with fire and brimstone; or the earth to open and swallow up the wicked; or the sea to stand like a wall; or water to come out of a stone; or bread to come from heaven; or the sun to stand still, or to change his course; or an ass to speak and teach his master; or fire to be extreme hot yet not burning; or lions hungry yet not eating their meat; or the sea tempestuous yet not drowning; or blind to see, deaf to hear, dumb to speak, dead to rise; or ignorant men to speak in laguages they never learned; or the devil to roar and confess Christ; or God sitting in his majesty, and Christ at his right hand; or Babylon thrown down and become a tabernacle of foul spirits and a den for the devil; or Christ to sit in judgment and give sentence upon the quick and the dead: to see any one of all these wondrous works of God it were great pleasure.
How can it be then but that we rejoice and take delight to see so many, so great, so marvellous, so heavenly, and so glorious wonders in one heap all together! How far would we ride or go to see the triumph of a mortal king!
Here is to be seen the triumph of God, the Lord of lords, and the King of kings; how he made the name of his Son triumph over principalities and powers, and over the whole world. Here is a Paradise full of delights; no tongue is able to speak them,
they are so many; no heart is able to conceive them they be so great.
Here is a shop wherein is set out the wisdom, and knowledge, the power, the judgments, and mercies of God; which way soever we look we see the works of his hands; his works of creation and preservation of all things; his works of severe justice upon the wicked, and of gracious redemption to the believer.
If we desire pleasant music, or excellent harmony, it speaketh unto us the words of the Father, and the consent of the Son; the excellent reports of the prophets, apostles, angels, and saints of God, who have been all taught by the Holy Ghost.
If we would learn, it is a school; it giveth understanding to the simple. In it there is that may content the heart, the ear, the eye, the taste, and the smelling. It is a savour of life unto life. "Oh taste and see how gracious the Lord is," saith the Prophet David. (Psa. xxxiv.) So manifold and marvellous are the pleasures which are given us in the word of God; God hath made them, and wrought them all for the sons of men,
Thus have I performed my promise, and simply and homely opened those four things which I took in hand. I have declared what weight and majesty the word beareth; what huge harvest of profit we may reap by it; how needful it is for us travelling through the wilderness of this life, and what repast and pleasure we may find in it.
But all this, notwithstanding, some take exception. and say, the Scriptures are dark and doubtful, the matters are deep, the words are hard, few can derstand them. One taketh them in this sense,
other in a sense clean contrary. The best learned cannot agree about them; they are the occasion of many great quarrels. John seeth this book sealed with seven seals, and an angel preaching with a loud voice. "Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?" (Rev. v.) No man can open it, no man can read it. St. Peter saith, (2 Ep. iii.), "Among the Epistles of Paul, some things are hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable, pervert, as they do all other Scriptures unto their own destruction." And St. Paul saith (1 Tim. vi.), “God dwelleth in the light that none can attain unto," whom man never saw neither can see.
Therefore, although the majesty be never SO weighty, the profit, the neces sity, and the pleasure never so great, yet it is not good for the people to read them. Pearls must not be cast before swine, nor the bread of children unto dogs. Thus they say. Indeed the word of God is pearls, but the people are not swine.
They may not read them (say some,) they are not able to wield them; the Scriptures are not for the people. Hereof I will say something, and a word or two of the reverence and fear, with which we ought to come to the hearing of them.
They say the Scriptures are hard, and above the reach of the people. So said the Pelagian heretic, Julian, whom St. Augustine therefore reproveth, Ye enlarge and lay out with many words, how hard a matter the knowledge of the Scriptures is, and meet only for a few learned men.' You say the Scriptures are hard, who may open them? There