« AnteriorContinuar »
RELIGION AND MORALS.
Nay, we may go to a greater than the Apostle Paul, in proof of the oneness of the two churches. Our Lord once said to the Jews, “ The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof." From this threat of the Saviour, we learn that the church of the Jews (" the kingdom of God") was not to be done away-it was to be continued—but it was to be transferred to Christians. Still, it was only to be a transfer. The thing transferred remained, in its elements and principles, the same. Sometimes now, when a borough has been proved to be corrupt, the right of sending a Member to Parliament is taken away from it, and transferred to some other town. But the same classes of persons who had this right in the one town, have it also in the other. Exactly in the same way, those parties, namely, children, as well as adults, who were admitted to a share in the privileges of the Old-Testament church, are entitled to & share of these privileges in the transferred or New-Testament church. The channels, or sacraments, by which these privileges are conveyed, are, indeed, changed, as the changed character of the Christian church required; the passover having given place to the Lord's supper, and circumcision to baptism; but the parties entitled to them remain unchanged. Is it said circumcision and baptism are two very different things, having no connexion with each other? The Apostle Paul teaches the contrary. In his Epistle to the Colossians, he mentions them together in such a way as clearly to prove their resemblance, blending them with each other, or rather merging the one in the other. The passage is this : “In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ : buried with Him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead.”
The argument, “ I find no direct command in the Bible for infant baptism, and therefore I see no necessity to have my child baptized,” proves too much. It goes upon the principle that we are to do nothing which the Bible does not literally and expressly command.
Be it so.
Where do we find in the Bible any command not to baptize infants? There is not a single passage in which such a command is to be met with. So that those persons who keep their children from the font, because they find in the Bible no command to take them, act directly against their own principle.
The truth is, that the Bible sanctions, and indirectly enjoins, many things which it does not expressly command. There is no instance mentioned in Scripture of a female partaking of the Lord's supper; yet the most rigid Baptist would not on this account exclude women from the table. Neither is there any direct command to keep holy the first day of the week, instead of the seventh ; but Baptists universally do this. Again, we are nowhere commanded to teach children to pray, or to send them to school; but no right-minded parent would plead this as an
excuse for neglecting these duties.
- Thus far, I have supposed that there is no positive command in the Bible that infants should be baptized. But I am much mistaken if a remark made by our Lord about children does not amount to a command to baptize them. Some parents once brought their little ones to Jesus, in order that He might touch them, thinking that even a touch from Him would convey a blessing. The disciples, in the spirit of those who plead, “I can't find it in the Bible," supposing that the Saviour would not care to notice chil. dren, found fault with these parents, and bade them to go away.
“ 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.” “Of such is the kingdom of God.” This is the remark to which I allude. Its plain meaning is, " The church of God receives little children." Now, the only way in which little children can be received into the church is by baptism. So that in this remark of our Lord we have virtually a command to baptize them.
If a public hospital had this notice over its gate, “ Children received here,” it would be an invitation to take children there for relief. No parent of a sick child could say, "I don't find that my
child can be admitted, and therefore it is “They brought young children to of no use to apply.”
Christ, that He should touch them: and Putting together all that has been said, His disciples rebuked those that brought it must, I think, be clear to every candid them. But when Jesus saw it, He was person that there is really no ground for much displeased, and said unto them, the plea, “ I can't find it in the Bible;' Suffer the little children to come unto and that a parent who makes this a Me, and forbid them not: for of such is reason for neglecting the baptism of his the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto child, is guilty of disobedience to God, you, Whosoever shall not receive the and does a grievous wrong to that child's kingdom of God as a little child, he shall soul.
not enter therein. And He took them up Hear the words of the Gospel written in His arms, put His hands upon them, by St. Mark, in the tenth chapter, at the and blessed them." thirteenth verse :
WHO'S YOUR DRESSMAKER?
because they will have what's just come “I can't tell how you always look so out.' And, after all, who thinks the well, Fanny: meet you where one will, better of them? They only get laughed people might think you had just come out at for their would-be finery, and poor sort of a band-box. Not that you are too of pride. For my part, I would rather smart or stiff, or the like of that, for appear to be what I am. If one can be everything about you appears quiet and nothing more than decent, the decency easy enough ; but, somehow, nobody ever should be real and thorough ; something catches you in a mess, nothing is ever of which a body need never be ashamed ; out of place with you, and everything fits something that would put it out of as if it had grown there. Who's your people's power to make fun of us as they dressmaker?”
do of a puffing shopkeeper, who has “Why, as to my dressmaker, Sarah, little or nothing but what's in his window, you must not think that I am like the and that more show than worth." folks who keep dressmakers always “Yes, yes ; 'tis easy to talk like that, going; and who have nothing to do Fan; but what's the use of it? You would themselves but to be pleased with a dress never have a girl rigged up like her to-day, and to get out of love with it to- grandmother : one must go along with the morrow, because something else strikes times : fashion is fashion all the world their fancy, and then to pay their dress- over." maker's bill, without asking how many “Ah! there's the mischief, Sarah : poor fingers have been kept at it night as people will make fools of themselves well as day to meet their whims. I am rather than be out of fashion, Fashion sure dressmakers would get on quite as is fashion, you say, all the world over: well, and perhaps better, both in body and now that brings to my mind what a young soul, if such people would spend some of woman of my acquaintance told me the their money in helping their poor neigh- other day.” bours to get a garment or a bed-cover “What was that, Fan?" now and then, and think less of what “Well, I was going to say, the young they shall wear themselves. And I tell woman a few years ago was taken by a you what, Sarah, I think it is a shame to lady across the water, and they stayed girls, such as you and I are, to be going some time in France. She told me that to almost first-rate mantua-makers, and in one part, I think it was somewhere in milliners, and to be spending so much of the south, all the girls looked so nice, their gettings in order to be like other folks, or though they dressed very much alike ; only
showing a little difference of fancy as to much out of fashion as to look odd or colour here and there; but the fashion dowdy-like. As I said before, I always was the same as it had been in their like you, somehow. Come
who's grandmothers' days. They never thought your dressmaker ? ” of changing; and, as she said, 'nobody “ Wait a bit, and I'll tell you. 'Tis that looked at them would ever wish them true I have my own notions about things, to change, they looked so well. It was and everybody should ; for if things are quite a treat,' says she, 'to see them in to be done well, they must be thought the market. They wore a full petticoat about, and one must have one's plans. I or skirt of white woollen, with a red band have my own way of managing my own above the hem; a light jacket of scarlet little matters too, although I owe great cloth, trimmed with black velvet or braid. deal to my dear mother's example and Their apron was sometimes of a dark teaching. Bless her! she is gone to a mulberry-colour, fastened, perhaps, with better world; but I never put on a new a pretty sash, and pinned up in front over dress without thanking God for the lessons their white stomacher. Ah!' says she, about tidiness, comfort, and proper care, 'you should have seen their shoes and which the dear saint used to give me. stockings—such pictures of tidiness; and Ah, Sarah, we young folks think little of the beautiful snow-white caps fitting so
a mother's value while she is with us : nicely over their plain hair.' I have often we begin to find it out only when her said, Sarah, that I should like to see them; loving eye becomes dim, and her gentle they must be patterns, sure enough; and
hand is cold. O, Sarah! it seems to me I can't help thinking that it must look a that my heart never felt all the music of great deal more becoming, and be more my mother's voice, till death had silenced comfortable, both for body and mind, to her precious lips. But I was going to dress like that always, than to have so say, as to my notion about dress. We many tawdry, flimsy, fly-away things may mind the fashion far enough to save about one.
I am sure I think sometimes ourselves from being laughed at, and yet that if the poor heathen people that wo never mind it so as to put on things that pity so, could but see us in our tip-top don't agree with one's look, or figure, or fashion, they would think that we were place. Why should I make a scarecrow the real savages."
of myself in order to be like people that, “But stop, Fanny: would you have us after all, I can't be like? If the fashion all dress alike, and never change? Why, suits my looks or fits my figure, when I what would become of the world ?" am really in want of anything, why, I
“It is not for me to say what would take it as it comes; but you'll not catch become of the world, Sarah ; but I do me making my own face worse than it is, think that the world is too fond of change; by hanging bad colours and ghastly shapes and as to going along with the times, as about it; nor will I ever make myself you say, why, it is enough to ruin a poor uncomfortable, or give up the right of body to try to keep up with the times, judging for myself what I look best in,they go so fast,—too fast for me a great no, not to please all the fashion-makers in deal. One has scarcely begun to feel at
the world. But let me say one thing,—& home in a dress, before it is 'gone out,' great deal more depends upon little tidy as the saying is, and you have to look out ways about ourselves than upon the for something else, and to spend your last
clothes we get. I don't mean that any. penny to keep yourself in the fashion. And body may be careless as to the colour or when you have to be always getting some- cut of their dress. What fits one may thing new, you can't have anything very not suit another. A thing may be all good ; at least, such as you and I can't." the go,' as they say, and yet you or I
Well, but do tell me, Fanny, what might look frightful in it. We must one is to do. You seem to have your own learn to be a bit tasty, and know how to notions of things : I should like to know choose what is most becoming for ourhow you manage. Now I think of it, you selves. But I mean that, though everydon't seem to change so often as some thing we put on may agree exactly with people, and yet you never appear to be so the colour of our skin, and our size, and
our walk, and the like of that; yet, if we mills, and many who get what some didn't mind one or two little things, nothing think dirtier work still, among nails and about us will go for much.”
buttons, and the like of that; and then “What little things do you mean, you have had enough of household work Fanny?”
to be sure that there's plenty of what is Why, just listen. Whether girls not very clean to be done at home: but think of it or not, one great secret of what of all that? You may pitch upon a looking well in what you wear is to be real tidy body any day in the midst of nice yourself. What matters a good bon- her work; for she's known by the way net over a grimy face? What's the use in which her very working-clothes are of a pretty shawl around a dirty neck ? kept about her. Then when the work is Who likes a girl that plasters her hair, over, why, one can make herself just but seldom combs it? And though I like what she likes. Talk of dirty work, you to see a quiet-colour glove when it is a should see what I have seen in the west good fit, a clean hand, after all, has a country among the girls that work in the greater charm. Nothing is worse than a mines. There they are, a long row of filthy paw; and to see a girl's dirty them in an open shed, breaking up lumps finger-ends poking through greasy holes of ore with hammers. Let anybody go in her gloves is about the most nasty and look, and it would be harder to find eyesore one can meet with. Mind that, dirty women there than clean ones in Sarah. I need not say that a bright, some places that I know, where the hands well-fitted shoe or boot upon a spotless set up for much finer things, and turn stocking always tells a good tale. Dirty up their noses at low gettings. A mineheels are seldom friendly with clean pates. girl would not think herself fit to be seen And though pins are little things, they without a snow-white cotton bonnet, made often help you to great lessons. If you so as to shade her face, and cover her neck mark some people, Sarah, you will find from the sun. She manages, too, to keep that their way of dealing with a pin is her boots black, and her working-dress just their way with greater things. A whole and clean. Nor would she work girl that never passes along without pick- without gloves, not she; and when her ing up a pin, that happens to be on the hammering is over for the day, and she puts floor, will be sure at other times to act on on her pretty cotton-print frock, and sits to the old saying, 'A penny saved is a penny sew or knit in her clean stone cottage on got.' And you may guess, too, pretty the hill-side or by the road, you would well, whether a young woman is tidy or never think, while you looked at her fine not, if you can find out how she uses her bright face, or watched the motion of her pins. There's a sluttish way, and a neat nice healthy-looking hands, that she had way, even in fixing a pin. A pin's head been so long pounding stones and earthy is not very big, and needs no trouble to stuff that very day. I don't mean to deny keep clean; but I have seen people who that untidy girls may be met with there; but never show a pin's head, but it is dull and I do think that, taking them as a lot, the dirty. Not that one must let every pin's mine-girls show you how people may be head be seen,—we may use them without clean and really dress well, though they showing them much; but if they do peep, have very dirty work to do." don't let them look as if they had just “Well, I must give in, Fanny : it's no come out of the grease-pot.”
use trying to speak for a slut where you “Come, come, Fan, you are cutting it are, I see; you meet a body at every too fine. Some of us have too much dirty turn, and nobody but decent people stand work to be so nice as you want us to be." any chance with you. Not that I like
“No, I don't think I'm unfair, Sarah. loose ways and untidy looks; no, no: 'tis I know what dirty work is as well as because I like what you like that I want most; and yet, from what I've seen to know a little more about how you among those who are worst off in that manage for yourself. Now I have been matter, 'tis plain enough to me that trying all this time to get out of you who nobody has any excuse for being untidy. your dressmaker is, and you keep it close I know many girls who work in cotton- still. I should like to know ; for I ain sure
I would go to her. My things never seem so nicely done as yours, somehow."
“The truth must come out, Sarah: I do a great deal for myself. It always does me good to help myself; and I find that when I am doing my best in that way, other people seem most inclined to help me. And I think there's something in what I've heard a great man used to say, that if he wanted anything done well, he did it himself.' I don't mean that I make all my own dresses : but I do manage everything for common wear; and try to keep my best clothes right; for you know, Sarah, that the best things will soon be fit for nothing, unless they are looked after. Now, when I buy anything new, I like to have it as good as I can afford to get. Good things last longest, and are cheapest in the long run.
And as to fashion, why, I always try to have my things mado so that they may be altered a bit now and then, if need be; and so I keep them, one way or another, as near to the fashion as is becoming for me.”
“But how can you find the time for all that, Fanny?”
“Time: why, I suppose everybody has some bits of time on hand now and then; and some people spend them in gossip, or trifle them away. For my part, I try to use up my scraps of time stitching and thinking."
“What in the world have you got to think about, Fan?”
“What have I got to think about, Sarah? Why, about making sure of my fortune."
(To be continued.)
THE NEW YEAR'S TEMPTATION.
The tide of business and of pleasure flowed rapidly along the streets of — on New-Year's Eve. Happy children, free for the holidays, sauntered along in groups, stopping at each of the gailydecorated shops to gaze upon the tempting articles exhibited for sale, and to speculate upon the probable cost of book or toy, and upon the chances of their ever possessing them. Here and there were persons intent on business : bright-looking matrons passing from one store to another in the selection of new-year's gifts for their children; the respectable artisan's wife filling her basket with a bountiful provision for the new-year's-day dinner; while amongst the crowds there was a genial exchange of good wishes for the new year. But the tide of business and of pleasure flowed past one house whose inmates had little acquaintance with either. A pale woman stood in the small room, just in the dusk of evening, preparing a meal for the children who surrounded her; and as she placed it on the table, and all gathered towards it, God's blessing was reverently asked; but there were no
bright looks of enjoyment on the faces of any in the group. The mother had been struggling for many years to maintain her children ; for the father, who had worked with a strong arm for their support, had been removed by death. It was a fierce and daily contest with poverty; and, poor woman, she seemed to have the worst in the fight : the leanness of their daily fare had sapped the strength of her eldest child, and just before the night we namo, she had, with an aching heart, taken him to a neighbouring infirmary, and left him there to become a cripple for life; the doctors having decided that white-swelling in one of his limbs rendered amputation necessary.
And now on this new-year's eve the poor widow had much to weigh down her heart, and make her very sad. Her rent was due, but the needed sum was not nearly raised. A stock of tea-cakes, whose sale usually added a little to her small earnings, lay almost untouched; for the respectable families whom she generally supplied, had not, amidst their profusion of Christmas fare, this week required any.
But she did not despair. God had for