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be strong, when not only are the larger bricks laid on in their courses, but when, as you go on, the very interstices are not only filled up, but well filled up. This will be, indeed, a solid occupation of all your waking hours.
MINIATURE CHRISTIAN LIBRARY. No. VII.
THE ACTIVE MALICE Of Satan. SINNERS HIS INSTRUMENTS.—The devils in hell quake and tremble at the naming and considering of God's majesty; but these wicked imps not only now, but sundry times, as appeareth hereafter in this book, (Nehemiah,) most cruelly, spitefully, and craftily go forward in their old malice, and by all means seek the overthrow of this building. So far worse is a devil incarnate in an ill man, than by himself in his own nature. When the devil will work any great mischief, he taketh commonly one man or other, angel or creature, to do it by, knowing that he shall do it more easily that way than if he should attempt it by himself. How is every murder, false witness, &c., committed, but when the devil stirreth up one man against another ? Let every good man, therefore, take heed unto himself how he yieldeth to sin : for in thus doing he maketh himself a slave to the devil, and his instrument to work by. One devil will not offer that villany to another devil to make him his slave; but if he can bring man into it, there is his rejoicing. Take heed, therefore, O man !- Bp. Pilkington. (1560.)
THE NECESSITY OF PERSEVERANCE IN PRAYER AND DUTY. (Nehemiah iv. 4–6.)— This prayer of Nehemiah is not long ; for God regardeth not so much the length of our prayer, as the earnest, hearty desire of the mind, with an humble submission of himself unto the Lord's good-will and pleasure, repenting earnestly for his offences, and faithfully hoping, without mistrust, for the Lord's comfortable assistance, when and as he shall think good. By this prayer they obtain at the Lord's merciful hand boldness to go forward with their building, and to contemn their proud mocks and brags : they finish the whole length and the height of the wall, in despite of their enemies : and the people were not weary of working, but the more they wrought, the more desirous they were to
work still; for the good success they had in building hitherto did encourage them to go forward with it, and they doubted not but that God was with them, and therefore feared no other. Let us learn, therefore, at these good men's examples, to be bold and constant in well-doing, and not to fear every bray and blast of wind. Let us be as a lusty horse, that goeth about the street, and careth not for the barking of every cur that leapeth forth, as though he would bite him; so let us not be afraid of the barking curs, nor look backwards, but go on forth, not changing with every tide; and the mighty Lord will strengthen our weakness with good success to finish his building : for so have all good men done from the beginning. -Ibid.
THE BLESSEDNESS OF PRAYER, WITH THE NEED OF A SENSE OF WANT AND HELPLESSNESS.- Prayer is a sure anchor in all storms; and they never perish that humbly fly unto it, and faithfully cleave unto it. Prayer is a salve for all sores; yea, it not only healeth body and soul, but even hard stony walls. No kind of earthly physic that God hath made, is good for all kind of folk at all times, and all kind of diseases: but this heavenly physic of prayer in wealth and woe, in plenty and poverty, in prosperity and adversity, in sickness and in health, in war and peace, in youth and age, in life and death, in mirth and sadness, yea, in all things and times, in the beginning, midst, and ending, is most necessary and comfortable. Happy is that man that diligently useth it at all times. But he that will so effectually pray that he may obtain the thing that he desireth, must first prostrate himself in the sight of God, forsaking himself as unable to help himself, condemning himself as unworthy to receive such a blessing at the Lord's hand; and yet nothing doubting but that his God, that never forsaketh them that unfeignedly fly unto him, will deal with him in mercy and not in justice, deliver and comfort him, not for any goodness that he findeth in him, but of his own mere pity, love, grace, and mercy, whereby he may show himself a glorious God, a present help and succour to all afflicted and oppressed minds. He that findeth anything in himself, to help and comfort himself withal, needeth not to pray ; but he that seeth and feeleth his present want and necessity, he will beg earnestly, crave eagerly, confessing where his relief is to be had. No man will pray for that thing which he hath, or thinketh himself to have; but we ever ask, desire, beg, and pray for that we want. Let us, therefore, in all our supplications and prayers unto the Lord, first confess our beggarly poverty and unableness to help ourselves, the want of his heavenly grace and fatherly assistance; and then our gracious God will plenteously pour his blessings into our empty souls, and fill them with his grace. If we be full already, there is no room left to take any more: therefore we must know ourselves to be empty and hungry, or else we shall not earnestly desire this heavenly comfort from above, which is requisite in all prayer. For he that asketh coldly, getteth nothing; and the more that we confess our own weakness, our want, and unableness, the more we confess our God to be almighty, rich in mercy, possessing all things in his own hands, and dealing them abroad to his poor people where he seeth them need, and sending the rich empty away.-Ibid.
SENTENCES FOR REFLECTION, Learn wisdom by others' folly; and beware of the rock they split upon. This is the advantage of him who comes after, that he see with more eyes than his own.
If thou desirest to attain the art of conversing, learn to do it without art; for conversation, if it be among friends, ought to be as easy as one's clothes; neither too tight and formal, nor yet loose and slovenly.
Study such things as are of use rather than of ostentation. And rather with the bee endeavour to gather honey, than like the silly butterfly to paint thy wings.
Thou mayest always escape with patience at one of these outlets; either by not hearing slanders, or by not believing them; or not by regarding the thing, or hy forgiving the person.
Avoid idleness : God would never have delivered a soul into a body which has arms and legs, but because it was intended the mind should employ them.
If thou only resolvest to amend hereafter, thou certainly resolvest not to amend now; and therefore thou art in no state of repentance, nor in the way of mercy.
Prosecute with the greatest faith and constancy not what pleaseth thee from an animal or carnal sense, but what thy conscience judges to be simply the best.
Let the fall of others excite in thee pity toward them, caution to thyself, and thankfulness to God, if he hath hitherto preserved thee from the like.
With sober patience and wise condescension thou shalt many times effect that which rashness and choler would entirely ruin and undo.
We commit every day, without thinking, a thousand little faults against others : be thou therefore willing to give the charity and goodness which thou canst not but desire.
Let thy library lie in thy head and in thy heart. Thou hast no more learning than what thou carriest about thee. That which lies only in thy books is thy author's, not thine.
If it were enough to repent the last day of thy life; yet how canst thou be sure to do that, unless thou doest it this very day? since this day may be, for aught thou knowest, thy last.
of Familiar Letters to a Lady entering on the Duties of her
We have never seen a volume, of the same size, so well adapted to the objects to which the title refers, as this. We mention it, first, because among our older readers there are some in the position there mentioned; but, second, and chiefly, for the valuable remarks on education in general, and in particular, which it contains. All our readers, male or female, (though principally the latter,) will find in it many valuable remarks. They who are seeking to carry on and promote their own education, will obtain much assistance from it. We have been so pleased with the book, both as to its sound principles and good sense, that we really think we should not be doing justice to our esteemed public, did we not tell them that such a book has been published, and recommend them to procure and read it. Teachers in week-night schools,
where secular instruction is given, will derive much benefit from the perusal. 2. The Accusations of History against the Church of Rome, examined
in Remarks on the principal Observations in Mr. Charles Butler's Work, ‘ Book of the Roman Catholic Church ;' with a Supplementary Letter to Mr. Butler, containing a Reply to the Vindication of that Work, Point by Point, throughout. By the Rev. George Townsend, M.A., Prebendary of Durham. A new Edition, revised and corrected by the Rev. J. E. Cox, M.A., of All-Souls
College, Oxford, fc. 18mo., pp. 456. Protestant Association. 3. Hidden Works of Darkness ; or, the Doings of the Jesuits. By
W. Osburn. 18mo., pp. 214. Protestant Association.
Both these works are extremely valuable, and refer, it will be seen, chiefly to the same portion of the extensive subject on which they treat, that which is historical. The Popish controversy is always important, belonging to that duty which comes to us with the most explicitly stated divine obligation, namely, that we should contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints. If evangelical Protestantism be right, then is Popery not only wrong, but dangerously so. Its errors are more than momentous, they are vital. They bring in those very doctrines against which the Epistle to the Galatians is especially directed, and which that Epistle so awfully condemns. We would not only not encourage a disputative spirit, but would labour to extinguish it; and even where controversy is necessary, a pitying love for the erring is still to be maintained; we are to speak the truth in love. But the truth which directly relates to the method by which salvation is personally to be secured, must always be defended. The church, by means of all its members, is to hold forth the word of life. This must be done always; for men always need saving, and can only be saved in one way. That acceptance with God, and the gift of the Spirit, can only be found by the exercise of a personal faith in Christ, based on personal repentance, is one main part of the testimony which the church has to deliver to the world. It is an unholy, guilty peace which is made by surrendering this. And at the present time this is as necessary as it was in the days of Luther, Cranmer, and Knox; perhaps more so, and that for three reasons. 1. Popery, both undisguised and disguised, Roman and Anglican, is reviving, and zealously active, and, in some respects, successful. 2. We are told that Popery is changed. It is true that in this country, at thès time, Romanists speak not with the same openness and boldness that they do where their system is dominant, and that their favourite watch-cry is, Liberty of conscience ; a liberty not granted to their own people, nor, where they can hinder it, (the Waldenses to wit,) to any who differ from them. But, even here, doctrinal Popery is what it ever was, hindering man from coming to the mercy-seat, by what Protestants believe to be the new and living, and onlyappointed, way. And, 3, unhappily, the question has been mixed