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hind, on the right hand and on the left, above, below, and round about, there is his all-gracious presence: "They shall not be confounded in the perilous time." "The angel of the Lord tarrieth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them." So true is Ben Sirach's saying,
They that fear the Lord are a sure seed, and they that love him an honourable plant." Whereas, "They that regard not the law are a dishonour and a shame; they that transgress the commandments are a deceivable seed."
Simple, then, is the question, and as simple the answer, "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? even by ruling himself after thy word." Like unto EARLY PIETY possession is there none, no rule is like to it; and the earlier it is abided by, instead of the bending canon of the world, the better, the straighter, will the course of the individual be. Thou, young man, whoever thou art, "Remember now thy
Creator in the days of thy youth." "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
CHRIST BLESSETH THE CHILDREN THAT ARE BROUGHT UNTO HIM.
MARK X. 13-16.
"And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."
ON this, and on another well-known occasion, when the disciples had disputed among themselves who should be the
greatest, the Lord of life instructed them by the presence of little children. And sure, if ever sight was beautiful on earth, it must have been the sight of little children in the arms of Christ, the Saviour of the world! He that was God from everlasting, but who, in time, had condescended to the weaknesses and inabilities and helplessness of childhood, loved this estate, and held up their comparative innocency of life as an example unto all: "Verily I say unto you, whosoever shall not receive. the kingdom of God as a little child, shall not enter therein." And so as Christ received little children, doth his Church likewise, simply asserting, that "the Baptism of young children is in any wise to be retained in the Church, as most agreeable with the institution of Christ." And, forasmuch as the passage which is selected as the text, hath been always, even from the times of those who followed the Apostles, thought to
look this way, it has been embodied in the Baptismal Service, and the following brief exhortation upon the Gospel is what you hear so often read: "Beloved, ye hear in this Gospel the words of our Saviour Christ, that He commanded the children to be brought unto Him; how He would have blamed those that would have kept them from Him; how He exhorteth all men to follow their innocency. Ye perceive how by his outward gesture and deed He declared his good will toward them; for He embraced them in his arms, He laid his hands upon them, and blessed them. Doubt ye not therefore, but earnestly believe, that He will likewise favourably receive this present infant; that He will embrace him with the arms of his mercy; that He will give unto him the blessing of eter nal life, and make him partaker of his everlasting kingdom."
Under this full persuasion we bring the child to the font, as our fathers