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more importance than to know when to go, and when to stay. Madame de Stäel tells us to seize the moment which precedes ennui, but this is not precisely what I mean. Solomon's precept—" Withdraw thy foot from thy neighbour's house, lest he be weary of thee,” falls more within what should be enforced on every young woman entering the world as governess. Right feeling, and common sense, though they are never included in advertisements, and seldom form a subject for inquiry, rank in my estimation, next to religious principle.
But I must beware lest you should think that I require to be personally reminded of the maxims which I have myself quoted. I have not forgotten the charge to brevity, that rests upon all your correspondents, and I will only add, that I am, Madam, Sincerely your well-wisher,
From Sprague on Christian Intercourse.' Christian intercourse is often perverted to purposes of censoriousness. A censorious spirit is always an unlovely feature in the human character; but it is especially so in the character of a Christian : nevertheless, it must be acknowledged that scarcely any unballowed temper prevails more extensively than this, among the professed disciples of the benevolent Redeemer. Wherever this spirit exists, it will be found that the individuals concerned censure their fellow-professors for some fault from which they suppose themselves at least tolerably free, if not bright examples of the opposite virtue. It will be found, for instance, where persons are together who regard themselves as somewhat distinguished for spirituality and zeal, that they will be exceedingly prone to censure others for worldliness and religious apatlıy: and not improbably will condemn some as possessing these qualities, who differ from themselves in nothing except that their zeal is more pure and less boisterous. On the other hand, where Christians are together who are unduly afraid of excitement, and who wish to be known, first of all, as the staunch advocates of order, they will not improbably speak with undue severity of their more zealous brethren; and may perhaps represent them as completely given up to fanaticism, when the prevailing influence under which they are acting, is that of earnest and elevated piety.
MATERIALS FOR THINKING.
1.-ON THE BIBLE.
There are some points connected with this volume which is so emphatically and appropriately styled THE BOOK, which are not often brought forward, and which, consequently, escape the observation of many.
One of these is, its completeness.
No work of man is complete. Especially is this the case with those books which treat of the history of mankind. Excepting in those cases in which the subject chosen is mere episode,-every production of the kind is either deficient at the beginning, or at the end. Either the writer was unable to penetrate the darkness of tradition, or of entire oblivion, as to the origin of his subject; or he is obliged to break off his narrative at the time present, confessing that of the future he can know nothing.
Contemplate the Bible in this point of view. When we take it up, it appears to present a collection, or rather a bundle of unconnected writings, of different ages, and bearing the superscriptions of a variety of authors. Some of its stories appear to have been written by Moses, at a very distant period ; a period, in fact, of which no other literary relique remains. Then we have some writings of Samuel; some of David; some of Ezra, and sixteen books of different prophets, of a variety of rank and character, from a prince to a cow-herd,which appear to have been written about the time of the great Assyrian and Persian empires. These writings were doubtless preserved, on sheep-skin rolls, in the Jewish temple. Subsequently we have a fresh series, the works of the disciples of Christ; most of whom were fishermen or mechanics. These were produced during the time of the Cæsars, subsequently to which date we have no writing possessing any accredited title to inspiration.
However, certain councils of fallible men assembled in the early ages of the Christian Church, and collected all these records together, and we now receive them, as handed down to us in one single volume, denominated the Bible'-the Book !
From this hasty glance of the origin,--the apparent or external origin, at least, of this book, could we have the least expectation of finding, in such a collection of writings, that wonderful completeness which exists in it? Observe a few circumstances in illustration of this point:
The history of this earth on which we live, is here given entire. We reckon the life of a man to be contained between his birth and his return to the dust. The first page of the Bible describes to us the birth of this var globe; and the last page describes its “passing away.” The whole annals of Time, then, are here included. We commence the narrative with “ the first day ;” and we end it when all distinction of days cease, “for there shall be no night there."
The first event recorded in the bistory of man, is that which introduced Death. The last event which closes the same history is the casting “death and hell into the lake of fire,” and the proclamation : " there shall be no more death." The first sentence passed upon a human being ran thus :
I will greatly multiply thy sorrow.” But the final words are, “there shall be no more sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain.”
But the perfection of the scheme is more complete than it is in the power of man to describe. A few outlines only are visible to the human eye.
Six days ended the work of creation ; then followed the Sabbatical rest. “One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” The world now approaches the close of its six thousandth year; and most believers in God's word are now looking forward to a Sabbath of a thousand years, whatever differences may exist as to the nature of that millennium.
Immediately following the first Sabbath there occurs, as the Scripture narrative, that Temptation by which man fell into the power of the old serpent; and immediately on the close of the millennial Sabbath there follows a like temptation of manhood, by the same powerful seducer, and with the same success. In the first case God himself came down to judgment, and passed sentence on the transgressors. In the second, the same consequences follow, and as immediately.
The Tree of Life is given to man in Paradise, at the commencement of the history. He loses it by transgression, but when “ He that sat upon the throne saith, Behold, I make all things new," the tree of life is again given. And as “ the Lord God walked