Imagens da página

escape. He calmly conversed with his profligate relative, and at length, perceiving him to be affected, addressed him in the kindest language, till he fairly disarmed and subdued him! He would not return his brother's draft: bat engaged to procure for the young man some immediate relief. He then prayed for him; and after fulfilling his promise of assistance, parted with him, with much good advice on one side, and many fair promises on the other.

A LION IN THE WAY. Ax indolent person is always finding some excuse for his course. He cannot work to-day because it is too stormy, and to-morrow it may be too sultry. He will not go forward in the discharge of known duty, because there are lions in the way-obstacles which require a little exertion to surmount. If he gets bread and butter enough to keep him from starving, he cares for no more. His family may shift for themselves or go to ruin. How many such lazy, shiftless, do-nothing characters there are! Do we not meet them every day, with hands in their pockets, or cigars in their months, talking about the weather and the dulness of the times? Suggest to them a project whereby they can get a good living, and with faces as long as horses, they will point out the lions in the way, and turn off with perfect indifference. They see their neighbours prosper, but they impute their success to a special providence, and intimate they were born with silver spoons in their mouths, while they, poor souls, were always destined to poverty.

Not only in regard to worldly prosperity, but in that which is of far more importance, do we hear men make excuses for not discharging their sacred duties. Tell them the blessings that will follow a life of virtue, and at once lions spring to view-there are so many objections that they cannot relinquish the world-perhaps at some future time they may see more favourable opportunities for embracing the truth. Just so unwise are mankind. They neglect their highest good. They chase shadows and

neglect the substance. When will they live and act as they ought? As accountable beings, destined to a life beyond the grave P-N. Y. Organ.

THE SPIDER AND THE FLY. Now, my young friends, if you will lend me your attention a little, I will tell you a story about a spider and a fly. The other day, as I stood by an old dirty, broken window, I saw a fiy dart into the web of a spider. No sooner did it find itself entangled there, than it tried to make its escape ; but the spider's web held it fast by the wing. And now, what do you think took place? The old spider had lodged himself in a dark corner of the window, where he could not be seen, but out he came the moment he saw the fly entangled. A contest ensued, but the spider proved himself too many for the fly. He grasped him in his long legs; the fly kicked about, but it was all of no use.

He was as fast as if he had been in a vice. The spider turned the fly over and over, and round and round, with his legs, till he could bite him and suck his blood. This he did, and a very short time afterwards I saw that the fly was quite dead. Now, my dear children, I will leave it to you, whether it was not very cruel on the part of the spider to lay that snare for the fly, and when he had caught him to suck the blood of the fly? I think I hear you all say it was very cruel.

Now I will tell you something else that is very like the spider and the fly. Satan, you know, is a wicked spirit, and he lays snares like the spider, but not to catch flies, but men and women, and boys, and girls. You remember the time that the fair was ? Perhaps you went there. If you did, you saw stalls with apples, and nuts, and gingerbread-you saw the shows, and the merry-andrews dancing outside. You saw the flying boats, and the wooden horses running in a ring. Now, such things are Satan's snares.

What a number of people were there! Well, they were all in danger of being caught in the devil's, snares, as the spider caught the fly.

When you go through the streets, and see the very large fine windows and doors of those houses where they sell intoxicating drinks, remember that they are snares of Satan. People go there and drink so much liquor, that they almost lose their senses. What a blessing it is that God has given us an understanding, and how wicked it must be to injure it and drown it as those people do. Well, the devil has them in his power, and if they do not pray to Jesus, and get delivered from Satan's snares, he will take them down to hell.

“O, what a large bill that is,” said Thomas to George one day, as they were returning to school after dinner. “What strange names!” replied George. What bill was it? It was a play-bill. Now the theatre is another of the devil's sares, and there are multitudes of people who go there, both high and low, rich and poor, young and old, male and female ; but as the fly was in the power of the spider, they also are in the power of Satan ; and though they are often a little more polite than the drunkard, yet if they do not pray to Jesus to be saved, they will be taken to the place where there is weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. That place you know is called hell.

Did you hear that beautiful music one sabbath evening as you passed by a large public-house ? That was the music saloon. They were singing the very same tune that you sing so heartily in the Sabbath-school; but you must not think that you may go there. No. That is another of the devil's snares.

Would you believe it? sometimes people go from the house of God to the music saloon. And they sometimes say that there is no harm in it, because they sing hymns. Now tell me, do you not think it is very wieked to sing sacred hymns on a Sabbath-day in a public-house, where the people have intoxicating drinks, and very often get quite intoxicated, where there is all sorts of lewd company, and lewd practices ? “ But it is the devil that induces them to sing hymns there?” There is a place in Scripture where it says, that he sometimes transforms himself into an angel of light. Is not that strange?' But I tell you, my dear children, that he will do anything to get you into his power. The people who go to the music saloons are snared

by him, and if they do not cry to Jesus for deliverance, Satan will take them down to hell.

Now, my dear children, I hope you will always keep out of the snares of the devil. Whenever you are tempted to sin, remember the tale of the Spider and the Fly.


ON OBEDIENCE TO MOTHERS. THINK not that there is no harm in disobeying your mother. God requires you to obey both your parents, to honour your mother as well as your father. When you disobey your mother, you are also disobeying and offending God, your

Maker and Preserver. He shows how he regards this sin, when he says, “ The eye that mocketh at his father, and scorneth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pluck it out, and the young eagles shall eat it."

There seems even greater guilt in disobeying your mother than your father. Think of it. You are disobedient to her, who took the kindest care of your helpless infancy, who supplied all your wants, who nursed you in all your sicknesses, and who was thinking, as she took care of you, that if God preserved you, you would presently be her comfort and her helper. Do you think she will now bear it easily, that you show that you have no love to her? Or that you only love her when she is doing something to please you? Do you think she will bear it easily that you have no regard to God—that you show no prospect of a good life and a happy eternity ? O can your kind and tender-hearted mother bear to see you getting ready so fast for an eternal lying down in misery? -0 I remember one companion of my childhood, who not only mocked at his erring father, but scorned to obey his kind and pious mother; and how, even while a child, he broke away once and again from the bosom of his family, and was once and again compelled to return to the roof of her whom he scorned and refused to obey ; and how at last he turned a swearing, drunken vagabond, and died not full twenty years old, away from home away, I fear, from Christ. I would not feel the anguish that mother's heart has felt, for worlds.

If your mother be a widow, hear me yet another word. God pities both you and your mother. He regards the fatherless and widow, and you may wait, and ought to wait with your mother upon the loving kindness of God. He is 110o your Father, and her Husband. Take care, lest by your unkindness and disobedience you displease Him, who has promised to care for her and you. Take care that you do not so displease Him that He shall presently leave you to follow your own ruinous way, while he still shows in his holy habitation that He is the God of the widow. And if your mind ever wings itself away when you are alone, to that cold and silent grave where your father's body lies mouldering and mixing with the earth-think if he were with you, how his heart would suffer, and how his voice would chide yon, should he see you troublesome and scornful to your mother.

KEEP YOUR PROMISES. We have often been shocked at the reckless disregard which many persons manifest for the fulfilment of their promises. They are ever ready to make engagements for the future, but when the time arrives for their fulfilment, they seem to have forgotten them entirely, or at least, to treat them as though they involved no obligation whatever. Such conduct is sinful in the highest degree, and when indulged in by professing Christians, furnishes glaring evidence of essential defect in their Christian character. It is also highly injurious in its influence upon society itself, inasmuch as it necessarily tends to destroy that confidence of man in man, which is so essential to the happiness of the community. It is especially detrimental to the interest of the individual himself, who is guilty of it, as he thereby forfeits the confidence and respect of his fellows. His word accordingly, is not relied upon, and he is obliged to suffer all the unhappy consequences. This sinful and injurious habit is one of the most inexcusable of which any one can be guilty. In ninety-nine cases out of a hundred, there is no absolute necessity whatever for any one to break his

« AnteriorContinuar »