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disciples were concerned about temporal food, we hear of something of greater moment to him than the supply of his bodily wants. “I have meat to eat that ye know not of.”
My meat is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish his work.” Then, again, when the cup of bitterness was in his hand from which his very nature seemed to recoil, with a majestic calmness, a serene spirit, and a sweet acquiescence, looking up to heaven, he could ask, “The
Father hatb given me, shall I not drink it?" It must not be forgotten either that Christ was under no obligation to enter the work and to endure the lot he did. It was his own free choice. But so ready was he, so far elevated above everything else in importance appeared the will and the appointment of his Father, that he is represented as entering upon it with the exclamation, “I delight to do thy will, O God.”
3. It was a peace springing from confiding trust in the purpose of God. Christ came into the world to achieve the most stupendous work that was attempted. To reform society, to lead man back to God, to heal the world's woes, and to win over the world to the acceptance and the practice of the truth of God. But who could have said, judging from outward appearances at his death, that his work was a success ? We find him after a brief ministry of three years, during which, with much opposition and persecution, he had scattered a few seeds of living truth, and made a few poor, humble, unlettered, despised disciples, preparing for the most ignominious and degrading of all deaths, yet with the coufident assurance that he had triumphed, that he had conquered the world, that he had struck the keystone of sin's arch, that he had sapped the foundation of Satan's empire, that he had given birth to principles that would revolutionize the world and bring all nations under the sway of truth and righteousness. The outward circumstances that surrounded him at his death, adverse and unpropitious as they appeared, produced not a ripple upon the calm surface of his soul ; his Father's purpose, in which he had an abiding confidence and trust, was more to him than all these. Although his life appeared cut short in its prime; although his work appeared arrested before even the foundation was laid; although, judging from outward appearances, sin, Satan, and the
world bad triumphed, he could die peace, assured that the purpose of h Father would be realized. It was not t success that had attended his ministry, was not the auspicious circumstances th closed his earthly career, but a confidi trust in the purpose of his Father th enabled him to say as he contemplated h departure, “I have glorified thee upon
th earth; I have finished the work which thi gavest me to do.” Such then was Chris peace, and such is the peace he has t queathed to us. Look,
II. At the mode of its communicati and enjoyment. “My peace I give un you.” Note the mode, • I give." It is blessing that comes to us not as the fru of obedience, not as the reward of dut but as Christ's free gift. It is a gift grace out and out. It is not a thing to done, but a thing to be received ; not peace of which we are to be the creator but a peace of which we are to be t recipients. Let us endeavour to illustre it by the peace which we have seen Chr. enjoyed.
1. It is a peace springing from an abidi consciousness of God's favour. The wa of a sense of God's favour is one of t bitterest sources of our unrest and di quietude. Now the favour of God is blessing not to be bought, not to be m rited, not to be won; not one for whic we have to labour and to toil : but it one that Christ gives us.
It is a blessi which Christ has recovered for us and cured to us by his humiliation, his agoni his sufferings, and his death. Are we r many of us seeking this peace in the wro way? Are we not labouring, and toilu and praying, and singing, and attending this duty and to that, with the hope a the expectation that we shall obtain Go favour, and consequently inward per thereby ? Quite wrong. If our faith Christ be an appropriating faith, the far of God is ours before and independently all these. The favour of God is ours account of what Christ has done, and 1 on account of anything we can do o selves. The work of Christ therefore, not any services, not any duties, not prayers, not any works, not any feelir not any experiences of ours, must be ground of our confidence for the possess and the enjoyment of God's favour. are reconciled to God, we are God's lo ones—it is a thing done, and not that wh has to be done. You may ask, Is there
value or importance to be attached to the 2. It is a peace springing from a cheerthings we may do ourselves ? Yes, they ful submission to God's appointment. are valuable and important as an effect, Discontent with our earthly lot is another but not as a cause. See by a homely illus- source of disquietude and unrest. But tration. At autumn you go into your gar- this, too, Christ removes by the peace he den, and in the middle of it you see a tree gives. But he gives it, remember. You hanging with delicious fruit. Now you cannot obtain it by labour, or school yourwould not say that that fruit was the self into it by discipline. Your lot may cause of the sun's shining; you would not appear a hard one, your path may appear say that it drew forth and gave brightness rugged and thorny, you may think your and energy to the sun's rays. But you lot the hardest and the worst of any. Now would reason quite the opposite. You it is evident that as long as you entertain would regard that fruit as the evidence or such views and feelings you cannot enjoy the effect of two things—of the tree's en- peace. From what quarter, then, can relief joyment of the rays of the sun, and of the come? Not from any outward source. You tree's
power of appropriating to itself all have tried a thousand ways and a thousand the nutriment which the sun's rays call times to alter your lot, but you have met into existence. That fruit would be valua- only with failure and disappointment. The ble and of service to you, not as a power or peace you want is a peace that shall spring a means of giving existence to the sun- up from within, and not dependent upon shine, but as an evidence of the tree's en. anything without—a peace springing from joying and rightly appropriating it. Just a cheerful submission to God's appoint80 with us and God's farour. Just put
ment and a sweet contentment with your God's favour in the place of the sunshine, lot. But to enjoy such a peace you must yourselves in the place of the tree, and your have the assurance that your present lot is good works and services in the place of the one of the best, and one that God can and fruit
, and you have just the right position will turn to the best account. This is the and relation of these to one another. peace that Christ gives you. He tells you Now Christ gives us that sunshine ; by his by his life and by his word that it matters finished work he cleared our sky of all the but little what your earthly lot
may be; that clouds that sin and evil had caused to the thing of highest moment to you is soulgather there. We have now to appro- culture and preparation for heaven; that the priate and to enjoy it. And we may bask most humble circumstances are frequently in it as freely and as fully as we may bask the most favourable to it; and that frein the rays of the sun of nature in summer. quently the most adverse circumstances And the more freely and fully we enjoy it, call into play and develop the highest and the more numerous will be our works of noblest powers. He tells you that one of faith and labours of love, the more ardent the purposes secured by his death is not will be our zeal and constant our service. only that all your sins may be forgiven, And where the favour of God is thus but that all things may work together for realized, where the sun of his love is al- your good. See, then, this great result is lowed to shine in upon the soul in all its not to be the effect of any cause you may power and glory, there there must be peace. put in operation; not the fruit of any What if all the world be up in arms; labour or toil on your part ; not to be the what if men frown; what if false friends issue of any bright or ingenious scheme betray; what if foes obstruct; what if your own wisdom may devise : it is a reeverything goes cross and adverse—we can sult already secured by Chris; 's work. It retire into the secresy of our own souls, and is the regulating principle of all God's apthere realize the love, the favour, the pointments and dealings wit': you. Where smiles, and the friendship of our heavenly this assurance which Christ gives is ac Father. If Christ be yours, this is the cepted there there must be peace. If, then, peace he gives you—the favour of God in Christ has died to secure this result, and if all its fulness, in all its plenitude, in all its God has pledged himself to bring it about, bliss, and in all its power. Open your
let God have his own way; let him do with hearts and let it flow in in full stream and you as it seemeth him good ; and knowing volume. The favour of God is already that this is the process now actually going it is Christ's gift, he has purchased
on, let your language ever be, “Father, it for you, and it is his wish that you
not my will but thine be done,” and in should enjoy it, and rest in peace.
that will you may find repose.
3. It is a peace springing from a confiding if we have laid hold of him with a lirit trust in the purpose of God. You may some- operative faith, the flesh may rage, times feel anxious about your own security world may tempt, Satan may obstru and salvation, your feelings may chime in enemies may assail ; we can withstand a with the doleful complaints some love to defy them all, and say with Paul, "[. sing; or you may fear that in some future persuaded that neither death, nor life, 1 conflict the enemy may prevail against you : angels, nor principalities, nor powers, 1 “I shall now perish one day by the hand things present, nor things to come, 1 of Saul.” Now you cannot overcome these height, nor depth, nor any other creatu fears and doubts, or have a brighter and shall be able to separate us from the fuller evidence of your part in Christ's sal- of God, which is in Christ Jesus vation with eternal glory, by any labour, or
Lord.” " I know whom I have believ toil, or effort on your own part. If your and am persuaded that he is able to k soul were thrilled with joy, if it burned that which I have committed to - 1 with zeal, if it yearned for God's house, if against that day." it were filled with ecstasy and rapture, And as with your own salvation parti these would be but poor grounds of con- larly, so with the ultimate triumpha fidence and objects of trust, very fickle, salvation of the Church generally. Son very deceptive, very 'uneertain. 'In thé times you may be disquieted with gloo peace that Christ gives us he gives us apprehensions and dark forebodings as something better ; a knowledge of his own her onward progress and universal and his Father's purpose. Here it is : "In premacy. Your only refage is in the p my Father's house," &c.; "I go to prepare, pose of God; but a confiding trust i a place for you, and if I go, &c.; will secure you peace. The artillery cause I live ye shall live also”
hell may be levelled at her walls, the I will that they also whom thou hast given genuity of sceptics may sap her foun me be with me where I am, that they may tions, the faithlessness of false friends a behold my glory”; “ Being confident of surrender her gates ; let us maintain this very thing, that he which hath begun posts, not in fear, but in confidence; and a good work in you will perform it until confidence in human skill, in human por the day of Jesus Christ." Now, see, our in Acts of Parliament, but in the purp confiding trust in God's purpose should of God. By and bye, when her enem not be dependent upon our progress in the are in hot pursuit, when mountains of ways of God, but our progress in the ways ficulty hem her in on either side, and of God is dependent upon our confiding red sea of destruction towards which trust in God's purpose ; but then God's appears fast hasting rolls before her, purpose has not been, will not be, secured shall hear a voice from heaven, "Be by any effort on our part, but by the and see the salvation of God"; and, finished work of Christ. The stronger our some divine rod stretched over the ses faith in that purpose the more rapid will some modern Moses, it will divide, a be our progress, the more stable and pro-: plete deliverance will be afforded to found our peace. This, then, is the peace Church, but complete destruction to that Christ gives us. He tells us that his fues. Rest, then, through Christ's w Father's purpose in our complete salvation the results of which he offers you, in has been already secured by his own work. Father's favour, in the Father's will, an What we have to do is to confide in it, the Father's purpose, and then the peac nd to lay hold upon it. If Christ be ours,
Christ will be yours. Poplar.
THE BIBLE THE BEST BOOK.
BY THE REV. O. ELVEN.
It may be very naturally asked, "If the Bible be the best book, why do put any other into our hands ?”. To which we reply, For the same reason hand-posts are put by the
road-side ; not to detain the traveller, but to direct ari on his journey. So we write the tract or magazine only to lead yo dy and value the Bible more. Especially do we deem this needful in the pret day, as there are so many false guides that would misdirect you and lead i to a precipice from which you might fall and perish. The press is now ming with publications which, however they may be gilded over with prosions of liberality-freedom from the prejudices of antiquated bigotry-or of found scholarship, are so many envenomed shafts aimed at the vitals of our ristianity, insinuating a deadly poison, which, but for a timely antidote, may 1 and agonize the victims of scepticism for ever. But even the very best of human productions are not to be allowed an equality h the word of God. Well has it been said of the sacred writings, that, idited under the influence of Him to whom all hearts are known, they suit nkind in all conditions, grateful as the manna which descended from heaven I conformed itself to every palate. The fairest productions of human wit, after 2W perusals, like gathered flowers, wither in our hands and lose their franey ; but these unfading plants of paradise become, as we are accustomed to m, more and more beautiful; their bloom appears to be daily_heightened ; sh odours are emitted, and new sweets extracted from them. He who hath e tasted their excellences will desire to taste them yet again; and he who tes them oftenest will relish them best." Let no man's heart fail him, therefore, on account of the assaults that are made 1 his faith in the Bible, seeing that for ages it has survived all the malice and wer of its enemies, and still
“ Like some tall cliff it lifts its awful form,
Swells from the vale, and midway leaves the storm :
Eternal sunshine settles on its head!"
ome eighty years ago, Paine, that infidel of execrable memory, boasted that had “gone through
the Bible as a woodman with his axe, and cut down all the s in the Christian Eden; so that however the priests might try to stick them in , they would never grow.” Impious man ! he has passed to the tribunal of Judge whom he defied; but the truths he thus boasted of having demolished still living, yea more, are striking root in every land, spreading their aches, and yielding their life-giving fruit to the sons of men. Hume, a more tile and philosophical adversary, exclaimed in a tone of exultation, “Methinks e the twilight of this Christianity ;” meaning the twilight of the evening would darken into the night of Atheism; but being purblind, he had aken the time of day. It was the twilight of the morning, which has ever e been shining more and more unto the perfect day. Nor need we fear the e recent attacks which have been made on the sacred volume, especially those the authorship and inspiration of the Pentateuch. From the hostile critiis of a right reverend prelate, we appeal to "the Shepherd and Bishop of Bouls," who has put his imprimatur on the writings of Moses by repeated rences and quotations. Hence we hear him conversing with Nicodemus, saying, “ As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness ;” and again,
ey have Moses and the prophets ;” and again, “ Had ye believed Moses, ye ld have believed me;" and again, “ Moses gave you that bread from heaven;
be added the fact that our Lord, when tempted in the wilderness, led each assault by a quotation from the Pentateuch (Deut. viii. 3, Deut. 6, and Deut. vi. 13). And was the great Teacher mistaken when, by his to each of these quotations, “It is written,” he adduced them as from the ired writings ? Perish the thought that infinite wisdom could have erred ! the only alternative, that he connived at a delusion! Cow refreshing it is to turn from these distractions in high places to the Alings of the pious poor, whose personal experience of the truth and precioustof the sacred volume is a tower of strength that no sophistry can overturn !