Page images
PDF
EPUB

For from eternity that place

Was planned by God and founded, Ere this round earth he hurled in space

Or lands by sea were bounded; Aye, ere the stars, or ere the sun, Or ere creation was begun,

'Twas laid by the Eternal. Yea! deep in His own inmost heart

Oh place of love unmeasured !
Where Thou the Son for ever wert,

His loved One ever treasured ;
And Thou that place hast opened wide,
By wound deep piercèd in Thy side,

That we by faith might enter.
And loving souls, the tried, the true,

That fortress strong have entered,
Waiting till all things are made new,

And rule in Christ be centred.
Kept free from rage of angry foes,
From Satan's darts, and sin's deep woes,

Safe sheltered in God's mansion.
Let man and devil do their worst!

SHALL GOD BE BEATEN? NEVER !
Their raging waves may madly burst,

To sink in foam for ever-
And still God's rock unshaken stands,
For neither Satan, nor nian's hands

Dare touch or reach God's CENTRE.
And in that day when earth shall quake,

And all things shall be proved,
Creation to its limits shake,

And heaven itself be moved,
God's dwelling-place unhurt shall rest
And all who've entered it shall test
THE STRENGTH OF God's FOUNDATION.

W. M.

CORRESPONDENCE,

1. “W. B.” A man who puts pasteboard into shoes and sells them for leather is unworthy of the name of Christian ; indeed he is not even an honest man. We may be told, “ It is the custom of the trade.” Well, how does this alter the matter for one who desires to walk in the fear of God, and to keep a good conscience ? It may

be the custom of the trade to put shoddy into cloth, to put sand into sugar, to put water in the milk. But can a Christian, or even an honest man do such things ? Most assuredly not. The conscience of a Christian must be regulated, not by the custom of the trade, but by the word of God. If this be lost sight of, there is an end to all practical Christianity in commercial life. A christian manufacturer could no more think of putting pasteboard into shoes and selling them as all leather, than he could think of picking a man's pocket. If indeed it be the custom to put pasteboard into shoes—if everybody does it, and everybody knows it, then, of course, there is no deception in the matter. But if I sell a pair of shoes as all leather, when I know they are made of leather and pasteboard, then am I a liar and a thief. I am morally worse than a highway robber, inasmuch as he openly avows what he is, what he does, and what he wants. A man who adulterates his goods is guilty of the very meanest dishonesty.

But then, supposing a person is not a manufacturer, but a salesman in a warehouse or shop-what is he to do ? He does not adulterate, he merely sells. Is he dishonest, is he untrue in selling adulterated goods ? Unquestionably, if he sells them for genuine. How could a true Christian-how could a really honest man declare an article to be genuine, when he knows it is not ? We shall perhaps be told that this is mere scrupulosity. Be it so; we heartily wish there were more of it in commercial life. To us it seems to be only common honesty.

But it will not do in the world. Doubtless; but what does this prove ? Simply that the world is untrue and dishonest. If truth and uprightness cannot get on in the world, then what must the world be ?

Still, the Christian must be honest. His object is not to get on in the world or to make money, but to glorify God in his daily life. Can he glorify God by adulterating goods, and telling lies?

We feel the immense importance, dear friend, of the subject which you have brought before us. We believe it demands the serious attention of all Christians engaged in manufacture and commerce. There is immense danger of being drawn away from the path of christian integrity, and falling into the wretched spirit of covetousness and competition so rife on all hands. We have to bear in mind that Christianity is a living reality ; it is divine life coming out in all the practical details of our daily history; it is not confined to the benches of a meeting room; it has more ways of shewing and expressing itself than by preaching, praying, and singing

-precious, most precious as all these are in their place. It must come out in the manufactory, in the warehouse, in the shop, in the counting-house, in the daily occupation, whatever that may be. How terrible to think of a man singing and praying on the Lord's day, and, on Monday morning adulterating his bread and selling it as genuine! Oh! let us be honest, come what may. Let us walk in the fear of God. Let us, like the blessed apostle, “ exercise ourselves to have always a conscience void of offence, toward God and man.'

True, it may cost us something. We may have to suffer for righteousness' sake. But what is all this when compared with the deep joy of walking with God in that narrow path on which the blessed beams of His approving countenance ever shine ? Is not a good conscience better far than thousands of gold and silver ? Our God will take care of us. He will meet all our real need, according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Why should we ever betake ourselves to the

contemptible “ tricks of trade" in order to make money or make a living, when our Father has pledged Himself to care for us all the journey through?

2. " Mary,” Middlesex. We render hearty thanks to God for His exceeding goodness in enabling you to enter on the path of simple obedience to His holy word. May He graciously strengthen and sustain you ! May He fill you with the joy of His own blessed presence ! You may find the path rough and lonely; but oh! the light of His countenance will more than make

up

for all that. Go on, dear friend, steadily on. Cleave to the Lord with purpose of heart. It is but a little while of toil, trial, and suffering here, and then the eternal rest of our Father's home above, in unbroken fellowship with the One who loveth us and hath washed us from our sins in His own blood. To Him we do most earnestly commend you, dear friend, in spirit, soul and body. May He deliver you from every evil work, and preserve you unto His heavenly kingdom !

3. “C. A. C.,” Valparaiso. We are deeply interested in your letter. May you all be greatly helped and strengthened in the way of truth! We trust the Lord may soon open

for
you

to have His table spread in your midst, so that you may taste the sweet privilege of remembering Him in His death the sweetest privilege of the church of God on earth. Wait on Him about it,wait together-wait patiently. Do not run before Him. See His hand opening the way ere you move one step. Be

much in prayer, and in the study of His word. Read Psalms cxxxiii. and Philippians ii. May you realise and illustrate those precious scriptures !

4. “M. S. S.,” St. Petersburg. Accept our warmest thanks for your deeply interesting letter. Be assured you have our hearty sympathy and earnest prayers in all your exercise. We give you for your comfort, 1 Peter v. 10, and Hebrews xiii. 20, 21.

the way

[ocr errors]

CONVERSION: WHAT IS IT?

PART II.

[ocr errors]

In our paper for January, we sought to set forth the absolute need, in every case, of conversion. Scripture establishes this point in such a way as to leave no possible ground of objection for any one who bows to its holy authority. “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew xviii. 3.

This applies, in all its moral force and deep solemnity, to every son and daughter of fallen Adam. There is not so much as a solitary exception, throughout the thousand millions that people this globe. Without conversion, there is—there can be no entrance into the kingdom of God. Every unconverted soul is outside the kingdom of God. It matters not, in the smallest degree, who I am, or what I am; if I am unconverted, I am in “ the kingdom of darkness," under the power of Satan, in my sins, and on the way to hell.

I may be a person of blameless morals; of spotless reputation ; a high professor of religion ; a worker in the vineyard ; a Sunday School teacher; an officebearer in some branch of the professing church ; an ordained minister; a deacon, elder, pastor or bishop; a most charitable individual; a munificent donor to religious and benevolent institutions; looked up to, sought after, and reverenced by all because of my personal worth and moral influence. I may be all this and more ; I may be, and I may have, all that it is

« PreviousContinue »