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thy great name ? What will the Egyptians say? What will all the nations round about say?' And he mourns and wrestles, cries and prays, begs and pleads, as if his heart would break; and says he, 'If I may not be heard, but this dishonor and reproach must come upon thy name, it cannot comfort me to tell me of making me a great nation : pray, let me rather die, and be forgotten forever, and let not my name be numbered among the living; let it be blotted out of thy book.' Well, says God, 'I will hear thee. But as truly as I live, the whole world shall know what a holy and sin-hating God I am ; for the carcasses of all these who have treated me thus shall fall in the wilderness, and here they shall wander till forty years are accomplished.' And now Moses is content to forego the greatness promised to himself, and to forego the entrance to the promised land, to live all his remaining days in the wilderness, and do, and suffer, and undergo anything, if God will but take care of his great name."
V. Love implies a desire to please. This thought is involved in what has been already said, but it deserves a separate consideration.
Wben little Velma was about to go to church one morning, her father asked her if it did not tire her to sit still so long. She said it did. “Then,” said he, “it will be better for you to stay at home with me." "No," she answered; " I shall go. Cousin says God wants to bave us; and it is not much to do it, if he wants us to." This is most childlike and artless, and yet it is the expression of love, foregoing personal comfort with the simple motive of pleasing the one we love—of doing what “he wants us to.” Childlike as it is, it is the most powerful motive of the Gospel. It is peculiar to the Gospel to reveal God in Christ as a personal friend, to be loved at once with a childlike artlessness and an overpowering devotedness. It is the yearning of love to do something for its object; but God is so great, what present, what token of love, can we bring him! What can we do for him? The Gospel brings him near to us in Christ, as a personal friend, and gives us the privilege of doing something for him--of acting with the simple desire to please him. Religion presents itself often with the sanctions and insignia of authority ; it appeals to the sense of duty; it comes with the majesty of sublime principle. But in the heart renewed under the Gospel, it wells up as the outgushing of a simple, childlike love-simple, yet mighty; and under its power, the disciple rejoices in toil and suffering, to please the Redeemer, whom, not having seen, he loves. Christ comes and says, “Do this for my sake ;” and this is the peculiar and the conquering motive of the Gospel. “The lose of Christ constraineth us." We labor for his sake. There would be more simplicity, power, and blessedness in our religion,
if, joined with the sternness of duty and the majesty of principle, there were more of this artless, devoted love to ihe person of Christ ; if oftener, under the toils of life, we listened to his voice, saying, “ Do this for my sake," and were animated by the thought that we please him hy our endeavors.
It is the nature of love to enthrone its object. The requests of those whom we love come with the force of commands; and their authority is proportioned to the degree of our love. Whatever we love best must therefore be enthroned the absolute monarch of our hearts. If love even to our fellow.creatures has a power to enthrone them, and make their slightest wishes law, how much more must all true love to the great God enthrone him in the heart, and give authority to even the least of his commands. If we love God, we shall be bent on keeping his commandments, and that not by constraint, but with the eagerness of love, which sacredly regards his slightest wish as law-which accepts his commands, not as fetters, but as ornaments of grace to the head, as bracelets on the hands, and a chain of gold about the neck.
God is the only being worthy of supreme affection, and the only being whom it is safe thus to love, and by loving to enthrone. Because love, in proportion to its strength, enthrones the beloved object, and binds the loving heart in willing servitude, there is something terrific in the very thought of supreme love for what is sinful and unworthy-of giving the mastery of the soul, the control of all hidden springs of action, to base men or to ignoble ohjects. If it be gold that is thus loved, or sensual pleasures, or the bollow echoes of human applause-alas, that a soul should love, and, by loving, should enthrone such objects, and abase itself in willing slavery to be their drudge and pander. God is the only being worthy of supreme love; the only being whom it is safe thus to love, and, by loving, to enthrone the absolute monarch of the heart.
Such are the characteristics of true love to God. Whether you exercise this love or not, it is not for me to decide. I leave the question to the scrutiny and decision of your own consciences, and of God, who judgeth the heart. But this I must say--without such love, you are without hope and without God in the world. There is no holiness in heaven-no, not in the highest angel-except what springs from true love to God. There is no religion on earth, no preparation for heaven, except in love to God. Without it, you are alienated from your Maker, and the subject of his wrath; you are fitting yourself for everlasting banishment from the bosom of his holiness and the heaven of his glory. O, creatures of God, can you see nothing in his character which awakens your heart to love ? Is there nothing in the majesty of his throne-nothing in the beauty of his holiness--nothing in the tenderness of the cross, which awakens one throb of emotion, one breath of praise, one aspiration to be like him? In all that is glorious in God, can you see nothing to love? Oh, that, as you gaze on his excellence, it were the language of your hearts,
“ This is the God whom we do love;
“This God is our God for ever and ever. even until death."
He shall be our guide
A FATHER'S INFLUENCE.
It must exert a vast influence upon a parent to reflect how perfectly God has subjected the minds of his children to his forming hand. His authority is absolute. In this respect he cannot possibly have any higher advantage. As a ruler, no one questions his right to entire obedience. There is no thought of displacing him by election. There are no tendencies to revolution in his little empire. His subjects are so manifestly inferior and dependent, that there is no necessity for tumults within, nor is there any considerable danger of interferences from without. He has the power of completely controlling their instruction. Furnished with the richest stores of knowledge in the Divine Word, he employs the same truths in the same divine connections which God employs in the conversion and sanctification of men. He makes the authority of God himself subserve his purpose. He has the pre-occupancy of the mind and the promised aid of the Holy Spirit. It is, perhaps, impossible for us to appreciate the advantage of an access to the mind in precedence of all others, and the value of the opportunity of introducing the doctrines of the Gospel before depravity has had sufficient time, and acquired skill enough, to bar up the avenues of truth. It is obvious, that Christianity, though in every other respect the same, would have been placed under peculiar disadvantages if the buman family had been all created, as we suppose angels were, in the maturity of their powers. We know not that the Gospel could be propagated at all in a world full of mature beings, involved in a common rebellion. The power of God, it is true, is not to be limited; but we do know, at least, that his power and wisdom are both magnified by spreading the triumphs of his religion, through the influence of instruction introduced in the happy, favored period of childhood.
It is a high motive, also, to parental faithfulness, to know that it exerts a wide influence in sustaining the blessings of civil government, and in the advancement of spiritual religion. It is highly probable that there would be no civil government on earth if it were not for fainily government; and it never will be known, till the light of eternity reveals it, how much a few well-governed and well-instructed families do to prevent states and empires from rushing into the horrors of anarchy. Then the example of parental faithfulness, with the blessings that are seen to attend it, powerfully draws men to Christ. Nor does it merely attract men, as individuals, to a spiritual worship of God. It leads families to their Saviour. Many a parent has been won to Christ by seeing how a Christian family is blest through the influence of family religion. And when such a one is turned to God, it is like the conversion of a king among idolatrous tribes: the whole government becomes a sanctified one, and entire households are trained up for the service of the Lord. Besides, no mortal can estimate the influence of paternal faithfulness upon future generations. To a reflecting mind, that is a mighty scheme of influence which is indicated by ihe words of the prophet: “Tell ye your children of it, and let them tell their children, and their children another generation." That is to say, let holy sentiments, sound instruction, stern principles of right pass from lip to lip, from an individual to a family; from each one of its members to a wider circle ; and so on, increasing, in a rapidly augmented ratio, till a multitude, like a nation, shall have their minds and hearts cast in the mould of a godly ancestor.
What a weight of responsibleness rests upon a Christian father! Household piety lies at the foundation of all right religious culture, and of the success of the Church of God. There the influence of the Gospel appears in its might, exerting itself under the most advantageous circumstances possible; there is authority absolute, yet tempered with parental aflection, softened by maternal kindness, and enforced by a mother's echo of paternal authority, and by the example of a dignified, Sarah-like submission. There is instruction, rich, various, and solid, introduced into the mind in the most favored period. Let parents, then, address themselves to their chief work on earth, the training of their children for the service of God. Let them wait upon the Lord for the aids of his grace. Let them remember that the time is short; that their influence must be exerted now; that they shall soon meet their dear ones at the bar of God; that they shall see them there polluted with sin, scathed with thunder, and crushed to hell; or they shall meet them clothed in robes of unsullied purity, with crowns of gold on their heads, and entering with songs and transports into the Kingdom of Christ.--Rev. Dr. Parker.
FREEDOM FROM SOUL-MURDER.
Fathers and mothers ! you are the ministers of God to your children. Your flock is, indeed, less numerous than that of the public preacher of the Gospel ; but you have, on that very account, a more perfect supervision over them. Your obligations do not respect so large a number; but you are under a weighter responsibility in regard to each one of your little flock than any minister can be in respect to each one of his more numerous charge. The principles that bind you to faithfulness are the same as those that impose obligations upon the pastor. You may become guilty of soul-murder. Nor will the fact that you are not a professor of religion diminish in the least the guilt of your unnatural neglect of the spiritual well-being of your offspring. Their souls are of unspeakable worth.
If you discharge your duty in teaching them, and in praying for the illuminations of the Divine Spirit ; if you endeavor, with pious solicitude, to win them to their Saviour, you may hope to be, under God, the instrument of their salvation. If you neglect them, they may be lost forever, and you may be unable to stand up and shake your raiment, and say, with Paul, “ I am pure from the blood of all men,” or even to say, “I am pure from the blood of my own dear children.”
The obligation to secure the well-being of persons bears some proportion to the degree of probability with which success may be expected. If the minister of the Gospel knew certainly that his efforts would be of no avail, then he could not be guilty of soul-murder; because it could not be said that any sinner ever perished as a consequence of his want of fidelity. But the probabilities are great that he shall succeed in gaining some, it he is faithful and persevering in his efforts. Parents enjoy greater prospects of success. If they are faithful, earnest, and perse. vering in their endeavors, they are almost sure of ultimate success. Yet neither the devout and faithful minister nor the pious parent can be absolutely certain that they shall have success in a given case. It may be that they shall be compelled, at last, to look on the object of their solicitude, and say, “ Your blood be upon your own head: I am clean." But there can be no such uncertainty in respect to your own case. has a more complete supervision over his child than the pastor has over an individual of his public charge. If the parent fail, therefore, through his own unfaithfulness, it is a more awful delinquency. He has less exposure to failure ; he has better advantages, and better prospects of success. But you have a still more complete supervision over yourself than the parent has over his child; you have greater probability of success not