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A long eternity of joy ; No tear to weep again; An immortality of bliss
Without one moment's pain!"
Blessings endless, without measure,
Ever there his praises sounding,
Brought us safe through storms and tempests,
Chast'ned us in tend 'rest love,
Comforted and still upheld us,
Till we reach'd our home above.
Now we often feel affliction,
Oft does sorrow grieve the heart; Oft, when sore oppress'd with trouble, Nought on earth can joy impart.
Faith we find is then a cordial,
Yes, for transient are our sorrows,
Ah! this prospect sure can brighten
ev. H. A. SIMCOE, Penheale-Press, Cornwall.
Thus have I declared part of that profit which groweth to us by the word of God; but it doth not only direct our judgment in the trial of truth, but doth also graff in us a boldness and constancy in the defence of the truth. Solomon saith, (Eccles. xxvii.) "A fool changeth as the moon." He is always unstable and inconstant, he knoweth not what to do nor what to believe; he is sometimes full, and sometimes empty, and turneth and changeth as the moon ; he buildeth, and layeth his foundation upon the sand, therefore his house falleth to the ground; he halteth on both sides, sometimes he worshippeth God, and sometimes worshippeth Baal; he is neither hot nor cold; he ebbeth and floweth like the waves of the
sea he doubteth and staggereth, and resteth in nothing; he knoweth not the truth; he knoweth not that the Scriptures are the word of God, so he wandereth in the dark, and knoweth not the way in which he walketh; he hath no feeling, no heart, no understanding; he is unfaithful towards God, and keepeth no faith towards man; he is wavering in all his ways. And why? Because he knoweth not the will of God, nor hath the light of his word to guide his feet.
But a wise man is one and stedfast as the sun. He buildeth his house upon a rock, and that rock is Jesus Christ the Son of God. Therefore his house is never shaken down. Be the storm or tempest never so rough yet it shall stand fast like mount Sion, because his trust is in the name of the Lord. He knoweth that his name is written in the book of life; he knoweth that he belongeth to the Lord's sheepfold, and that no man can take him away out of the Lord's hand.
In this boldness David saith (Psalm xxiii.) "Though I should walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil; for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff they comfort me." And again, (Psalm xxvii.) "The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear ?" And again, (Psalm cxix.) "Except thy laws had been my delight, I should now have perished in mine affliction."
When Hezekiah heard the proud message of Sennacherib sent to him and his people by Rabshakeh, that they should not obey Hezekiah, nor trust in him when he said, "The Lord will deliver you;" and, "Let not thy God deceive thee, in whom thou trustest;" he went up into the house of the Lord, and
prayed unto the Lord to save him and his people out of their hands, that all the kingdoms of the earth might know that he is God alone. (2 Kings, xix.)
Even so the Apostle (Rom. xiv.) "Whether we live or die, we are the Lord's." And in this boldness our Saviour Christ settled himself to bear their reproaches, and to carry his cross. (Luke xxii.) "Father, if thou wilt, take away this cup from me; nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done." Thus they that are taught by the word of God to put their trust in the Lord, and are thereby rooted and settled in him, cannot be removed by any practice of Satan, but stand fast, and continue for ever.
Which shall more plainly appear if we look back into the times of persecution, and behold the boldness and constancy of the saints of God. They were brought before magistrates, cast into prison, spoiled of their goods, cruelly murdered; some were hanged upon gibbets, some run through with swords, some torn with wild horses, some drowned in the water, and some burnt in the fire.
They were hated of all men for the name of Christ, they were despised as the filth of the world, and dung of the earth, yet continued they faithful and constant; they armed their hearts with the comfort of God's word, thereby were they able to resist in the evil day; they were faithful unto death therefore God gave them a crown of glory.
When they were called before kings and princes, and others of authority, and commanded to forsake the truth they had learned, and the comfort which they took in the truth, they answered in this manner O my gracious lord, I would fain do your
commandment; I am your subject; I have done faithful service with my body and with my goods, but I cannot serve you against God. He is King of kings, and Lord of lords; he is my Lord, before whom I stand; I have put my life in his hands; he hath forbidden me to do this thing which you command, I cannot therefore do it.
Judge uprightly whether it be meet to obey you rather than God. My living, my wife, my children, and my life, are dear unto me; I am a man like others, and have my affections; yet neither living, nor wife, nor children, nor my life, is so dear unto me as the glory of God. I am but a poor worm, yet am I the work of his hands. God hath put his word in my mouth; I may not deny it; I may not bear false witness against the Lord. unto me in respect of the truth; I know if I should deny him to save my life, I should lose it; and if I lose my life for his sake, I shall find it.
My life is not dear
That which your authority shall lay upon me is not done without his will. All the hairs of my head are numbered; I owe you obedience; I will not resist your power; for if I should resist, I should resist the ordinance of God. I am subject to you for conscience sake; I will forsake my country, my goods, my children, and myself, at your commandment; I will say to mine own flesh, I know thee not; only I cannot forsake my Lord God.
Dear Sir, you fight not against me. Alas! what am I? what can I do? You fight against God, against the Most Holy, against him which can command your life to go out of your body. It is a hard thing for you to kick against the spur; it is no hard matter