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cipice. IGNORANCE trembled not when he came to the river-side, and prepared to cross it; he got over it with less difficulty than Christian, for one Vain HOPE helped him with his boat; but when he reached the other side, the King commanded his servants to bind him hand and foot, and to cast him into outer darkness.
Yet while this should warn the presumptuous and the self-confident, it should not discourage the awakened sinner, who feels that life is receding beneath his tread, and that his feet have as yet found no sure resting-place. The language of the gospel is language of peace to all who really desire salvation from the peril and the dominion of sin. “Come unto me," says the Saviour, whom it proclaims, "all ye that labour and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." It is never too late to turn to him; to seek forgiveness at his cross. God's promises of salvation are made without exception of time; for whenever a sinner repents of his sins, he has promised to put away his wickedness out of remembrance. They are made without exception of sins; for, “ The blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin ;"and, “ All manner
, of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men."! They are made without exception of persons; for,“ Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved;"$ “Whosoever will,
S + 1 John i. 7. I Matt. xii. 31. § Acts ii. 21.
* Matt. xi. 28.
let him take the water of life freely;' that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."
Aged reader! “behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Look unto him and be saved. How else will you pass through the swellings of Jordan ? how else will you stand at the judgment seat of Christ ? WHEN WILT THOU DIE ?
f John vi. 37.
* Rev. xxii. 17.
Not in the solemn night, When dim and shadowy all things appear; When thoughts are tinged with mournfulness and fear, And nature's fairest scenes are veiled from sight; For darkness only throws a deeper gloom
Around the opening tomb.
But let the gladsome day
and fadeless ray Upon my ransomed spirit; let no cloud
Life's closing scene enshroud.
Not in the hour of health,
Good Lord, deliver me.
Calm be my last farewell
So let me pass away.
Not in a distant land,
And soothe my weariness.
But gather round my bed The loved ones who have gladdened life's past hours ; Let cherished objects, fondly-tended flowers, And well-known faces, comfort round me spread; And gentle words of counsel and of love
Point me to hopes above.
Saviour! thou wilt not chide These simple wishes twined around the grave; And yet ’tis better that on death's cold wave My trembling vessel thou shouldst launch and guide, How, when, and where thou wilt: what should I fear
With thee, my pilot, near ?
Through all life's troublous way Thou hast sustained me. Thou wilt keep me still. Veiled is the future ; yet I fear no ill ; But ready stand thy summons to obey. It matters little what the path may be,
So that it leads to thee.
THE HEAVENLY REST,
Soon will “the day break, and the shadows flee away." Soon will the darkness of earth be exchanged for the radiance of heaven. There is no night there. “Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself; for the Lord shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended."*
How welcome to the aged Christian is the thought of heaven! As the toil-worn labourer hails with gladness the hour of rest; as the wave-tossed mariner discerns with thankfulness the haven of safety; as the weary exile approaches with feelings of rapture his native country; so does the believer rejoice in the immediate prospect of eternal glory. He loves to think of that moment when he shall be absent from the body and present with the Lord; when the cares, the conflicts, and the corruptions which surround him here, will be exchanged for the peace and purity which pervade the everlasting abode of the redeemed. Varied are the attractions which draw his
Isa. lx. 20.