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Divinest lessons there. Christ crucified is the power of God and the wisdom of God. The bright rays of Divine goodness and love which are scattered throughout His word, are in “ Christ our sacrifice" concentrated into one perfect orb of infinite mercy.
It was in tender regard for His disciples then, and for us who come after them, that Jesus said, “ This do in remembrance of me." He knew our weakness, He understood the power of His cross; and as a perpetual barrier to our pride, as a constant inducement for us to meditate upon the great means of our salvation, He left the command to eat the bread and drink the wine “in remembrance" of Him.
We do well to remember Christ. It becomes us to meditate on His prayer and agony and bloody sweat; to think of the pierced hands and wounded side ; of the bruised body and shed blood and agonised soul. Let us remember that He suffered for us, “the just for the unjust; " that He bore " our sins and carried our sorrows;" that " He was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities; that the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; " and that “with His stripes we are healed.”
“ Not the crowd whose cries assailed Him,
Slew Him on the cursed tree.
In the sad Gethsemane." There is, however, another side to this ordinance, and we are justified in indulging another strain of meditation. This bread and wine are s prophecy as well as a memorial; they point to the future, as well as bring to remembrance the past. The prophetic meaning is indicated by our Lord in the words which Luke has repeated : “I will not ang more eat thereof until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God;" " I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God shall come” (Luke xxii. 16-18). In harmony with these words of Jesus, and to some extent as a commentary upon them, we have the declaration of Paul to the Corinthians : "As often as yo eat this bread and drink this cup, ye do show forth the Lord's death till He come” (1 Cor. xi. 26). Till He come! The bread and the wine then, memorials of His death and pledges of His coming. The memorial Supper is a link between the agony and the triumph-between the cross and the crown-between the dying for sin and the coming to judg; ment. “If I go,” said Jesus in His last discourse ; "If I come again and receive you unto myself; that where I am there ye may be also” (John xiv. 3). If as we contemplate the cross and its agony we are oppressed with the darkening clouds that gather around its sorrowful mystery, faith tells us that these clouds have their silver lining,--they are bright with the reflected glory of the second advent, Let us look back upon the past with reverenť adoring gratitude, and on the future with joyful confident expectation and hope.
" And thus that dark betrayal-night,
With the last Advent we unite;
Until He come.”
But, again, this Supper is not only a memorial and a prophecy, it is so a type. While the disciples were yet sitting round the table in he upper room, Jesus said to them,—"I appoint unto you a kingdom s my Father hath appointed unto me; that ye may eat and drink at ay table in my kingdom” (Luke xxii. 29. 30). The Saviour's allusion a these words was very obvious. He had already on more than one ccasion spoken of the future glory of the redeemed, under the similiude of a feast. And now at the Supper, which He designed should be commemorative of His broken body and His shed blood, He pointed their thoughts to that more glorious feast, when He and they and all who are cleansed in the fountain opened for sin and uncleanness, will unite in the sinless, cloudless joy of His Father's house.
We are led by this ordinance, therefore, this brief hour of imperfect fellowship with Christ, to think of that higher communion of which this is a type, when the whole brotherhood of His redeemed shall be gathered around the family board in the kingdom of His Father. This memorial Supper is a preparation for the heavenly feast; that heavenly feast will be the perfect fulfilment of all the aspirations and all the hopes which are begotten by this memorial Supper. Here our fellow- . ship is marred by a consciousness of sin ; here unbelief obtrudes itself between our hearts and Him, whom having not seen we love; here the distinctions and limitations of earth hinder the unity of the Spirit: but there every human distinction will be forgotten; there every
cloud will be driveu away by the light and joy of the eternal morning. Now
we share with our Lord in His humiliation; now we meditate on Iis sorrows and His pains; but there we shall behold His triumph and share in His glory.
Now, ours is the communion of faith ; then, every veil will be taken away, and we shall behold the King in His
“Now we see through a glass darkly ; but then face to face" (1 Cor. xiii. 12). The words of the apostle, dimly and fitfully realized in our highest moments upon earth, will then become perfectly fulfiled ;'" we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord," shall become “ changed into the same image from glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor. iii. 18). "It doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is ” (1 John iii. 2).
Let me remind you, as a final word, that the whole significance of this Supper to us, as memorial, prophecy, or type, depends upon our personal trust in the Lord. The bread and the wine are nothing to us-nay, they are worse than nothing, they are witnesses against us, if they be not symbols of the body wounded for our transgressions, and the blood which cleanseth us from all sin. Our great need now is a strong clear faith in the living Christ,-a faith which shall grow into a confident assurance that this Supper is a memorial of His death
for us; a pledge of His coming to effect our final redemption ; type of that perfect fellowship for which He has caused us to hope 'Lord, increase our faith.” Make Thyself known to us in the breakin of bread!
With such symbols of His love before us, we cannot doubt Hi willingness to help and bless every heart. Let us throw ourselve upon His compassion. Let us trust" in His mercy. attitude toward each of us is that indicated in His own words addressed to a Church that had become chilled by worldliness : "Be hold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to him and sup with him, and he with me." “Even so,” we cry," come, Lord Jesus.”
BREAD UPON THE WATERS.
A LAD was toiling up a hill near the city, under the weight of a heavy basket, in the afternoon of a sultry day in August. He had been sent home with some goods to a customer who lived a short distance in the country. The boy was slightly built, and his burden almost beyond his strength. Many times he sat down to rest himself on the way up the hill. But it seemed as if he would never reach the summit. Each time he lifted the basket it felt heavier than before.
The boy was about half way up the hill with his basket, when a gentleman overtook and passed him. He had not gone on many paces, when he stopped, and, turning round to the lad, looked at him for a moment or two, and then said, kindly
“ That's a heavy load you boy. Come, let me help you.” And the gentleman took the basket, and carried it to the top of the hill.
“ There. Do you think you can get along now?” said he, with a smile, as he set down the basket, “or shall I carry it a little farther p"
you, sir,” returned the boy, with a glow of gratitude on his fine young face. _“I can carry
it now very well; and I am very much obliged to you."
“You are right welcome, my little
man, said the gentleman, ant passed on.
Twenty years from that time, careworn man, well advanced in life sat motionless in an old armchair with his eyes fixed intently upon the glowing grate. He was alone, and appeared to be in a state of deep ab straction. In a little while, however the door of the room opened, and tb light form of a young and lovely gi glided in.
Papa,” said a low, sweet roice and a hand was laid upon the ol man's arm.
“ Is it you, dear?” he returned with a low sigh.
“ Yes, papa," and the young girl leaned against him, and parted with her delicate fingers the that lay in disorder about his fore head.
“I would like to be alone for thi evening, Florence,” said the old mat “I have a good deal to think abou and expect a person on business."
And he kissed her tenderly; Je sighed as he pressed his lips to her
The girl passed from the room a noiselessly as she had entered. Th old man had been calm before he coming in; but the moment she re tired he became agitated, and aros and walked the floor uneasily. continued to pace to and fro for
early half an hour, when he stopped the visitor arose, and was gone beaddenly and listened. The street fore his bewildered auditor had suffi. oor bell had rung. In a little while ciently recovered his senses to know man entered the room.
what to think or say. "Pardon this intrusion, sir," he In the morning, true to his promise, aid, “but facts that I have learned Mr. Greer called upon Mr. Mason, his evening have prompted me to and tendered a cheque for two
upon you without a moment's thousand pounds, with his note of lelay. My name is Greer, of Greer, hand at thirty days for two thousand Giller & Co.
more, which was almost the same as Mr. Mason bowed, and said
money. "I know your house very well: While the cheque and note lay beind now remember to have met you fore him upon the desk, and ere he more than once in business trans- had offered to touch them, Mr. Mason actions."
looked earnestly at the man who had “Yes. You have bought one or so suddenly taken the character of a two parcels of goods from us,” replied disinterested, self-sacrificing friend, the visitor. Then after a moment's and said pause he said, in a changed voice- “My dear sir, I cannot understand
“Mr. Mason, I learned to-night, this. "Are you not labouring under from a source which leaves me no some mistake” room to doubt the truth of the state- “Oh, no. You once did me a ment, that your affairs have become service, that I am now only seeking seriously embarrassed-that you are to repay. It is my first opportunity, in fact on the very eve of bankruptcy. and I embrace it eagerly. Tell me, frankly, whether this is Did you a service ? When?"
I ask from no idle Twenty years ago," replied the
nor from a concealed and man, “I was a poor boy and you a sinister motive, but to the end that man of wealth. *One hot day I was
may prevent the threatened dis. sent a long distance with a heavy aster, if it is in my power to do basket. While toiling up a hill, with 50."
the hot sun upon me, and almost Mr. Mason was dumb with sur- overcome with heat and fatigue, you prise at so unexpected a declaration. came along, and not only spoke to He made two or three efforts to me kindly, but took my basket and speak, but his lips uttered no sound. carried it to the top of the hill, Ah, .“ Confide in me, sir," urged the sir, you do not know how deeply that visitor. “Trust me as you would act of kindness sank into my heart, trust your own brother, and lean and how I longed for opportunity upon me if your strength be indeed to show you by some act how gratefailing. (Tell me then-is it as I have ful I felt! But none came. Often,
afterward, did I meet you in the “It is,” was all the merchant could street, and look into your face with atter.
did not remember "How much will
Ever since, I have regarded Mention the sum, and, if within the you with different feelings from those Pompass of my ability to raise, you I entertained for others; and there shall have it in hand to-morrow. has been no time that I would not Will four thousand pounds relieve have put myself out to serve you. you from your present embarrass- Last night I heard
of your embarrassment? Then let your anxiety sub- ments, and immediately called upon side, Mr. Mason. That sum you
you. The rest you know." shall have. To-morrow morning I
Mr. Mason was astonished at so will see you. Good evening.” And
strange a declaration.
“Doyou rememberthe fact to which opportunity, by carrying your bur I allude?" asked Mr. Greer.
den for you, which has become to “ It had faded from my memory heavy, until the hill is ascended, an entirely: but your words have
you are able to bear it onward agai brought back a dim recollection of in your own strength.” the fact. But it was a little mat. Mr. Mason was deeply moved ter, sir, a very little matter, and Words failed him in his effort to e not entitled to the importance that press his true feelings. The brea you have given it."
cast upon the waters had returne “To me it was not a little matter, to him after many days, and h sir,” returned he. “I was a weak gathered it with wonder and thank boy, just sinking under a burden fulness. The merchant was sared that was too heavy, when you put from ruin. forth your hand and carried it for A kind act is never lost, ere me. I could not forget it. And now though done to a child ! let me return the favour at the first
PRAYERS FOR DONALD GRANT. In the highlands of Scotland, punctuality at public worship i reckoned among the cardinal virtues. The people for generations have been trained to reverence God's day and His house, so that it is considered not only wrong, but also disreputable, to lounge at home or to stroll over heath and burn, while others are honouring God it the sanctuary
There lived in this region some years since an honest farmer, yclepe Donald Grant. He was very wise for this world; and, while profess ing better things, he gave all his strength and energy to his six days toil
, so that when the Sabbath came he was unfit for the service of th sanctuary. Once in the season of barley harvest, when farm help wa scarce, Donald so over-wrought himself on Saturday, that his sest ili the “auld kirk” was empty the next day. He remained at home to recruit his powers for a fresh campaign on Monday. Some wagi the parish, knowing Donald's besetting sin, and fearing the effect o his example on others, resolved to nip the delinquency in the bud, and took the case into his own hands.
In the afternoon, when the pastor entered the pulpit, he found note in which was written : "The prayers of this church are requeste for Donald Grant." The minister was taken by surprise, not havin heard of his illness, but remembered, as also did the people when thi note was read, that his family pew was tenantless in the morning After service, one asked another what ailed Donald Grant, but non could tell his neighbour; and all decided that some sudden illness has brought the request directly from the family.
The Sabbath passed, and Donald, refreshed by many hours of sleep and by the sweet breeze and the holy calm of his native hills, Monday like a strong man to run a race.
But scarcely had the sun begun to gem the dewy heather, when above the whetting of the