« AnteriorContinuar »
27. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!
“But when their tales were done,
There spake among them one,
Sad losses have ye met,
But mine is heavier yet,
“« Alas !' these pilgrims said,
• For the living and the dead,
For the wreck of land and sea;
But however it came to thee,
- Frances Brown.
REBUKED THE WINDS, by saying, according to Mark (iv. 39), “ Peace, be still ;" Te iuwoo, be muzzled like an ox; be silent, the same word that Christ uses to the demon in Mark i. 25.
THERE WAS A GREAT Calm. — Mark adds the wind ceased, krónaoev grew weary, tired, “a beautiful and picturesque word. The sea sank to rest as if exhausted by its own beating.”—Vincent.
CUTHBERT'S WAY OUT.-In the early dawn of Britain Cuthbert left his sheep and went to preaching Christ. One day, with three companions on the sea, he was tossed by a storm upon a dreary shore, and his comrades cried to him :
“Cuthbert, let us perish,-hope is o'er. The furious tempest shuts the water path;
The snow-storm binds us on the bitter land.” “Now, wherefore, friends, have ye so little faith?” God's servant said, and, stretching forth his hand toward heaven,
He listed up his reverent eyes and spake,
“I thank thee, Lord, the way is open there. No storm above our heads in wrath shall break
And shut the heavenward path of love and prayer.”
The heavenward path of love and prayer is never shut to faith by earthly storms. It is opened by them. From the pillow of stones we see the gates ajar. In the darkness of earth are shown to us the infinite worlds above, our dreams become steps to heaven, and our hills of difficulty mountains of transfiguration. . “Ridge of the mountain wave, lower thy crest! Wail of Euroclydon, be thou at rest! Sorrow can never be, darkness must fly, Where saith the Light of light, Peace! it is I!”
PICTURE OF SHIPWRECK.-We are apt to see too exclusively the dark side of the picture of these times. “An artist. when on his death-bed, called for his masterpiece. It was the painting of a shipwreck, with dark clouds and raging seas, the only light a lurid one. • That cloud is too dark,' he said, 'I always thought it the right shade before, but now I see it is too dark; I must make it brighter,' and with a last touch of his brush he let a gleam of light illumine the darkness."— Tools for Teachers.
A tossing bark;
A heaving sea;
Her grave may be.
The sun shines through;
The waters blue.
A troubled soul
On life's rough sea;'
No hope may be.
Upon our tears;
A bow appears. -Rev. W. B. C. Merry.
LIBRARY.—Mrs. Stowe's hymn, “When Winds are Raging o'er the Upper Ocean." Tennyson's “Crossing the Bar."
PEACE BE STILL.
And we find peace ;
Oil CALMING THE TROUBLED WATERS.—“It is interesting to notice in this connection, not as an explanation, but as an application of the miracle of Jesus, the effect of oil in calming the sea around a vessel in a storm. There are means which God gives us to use in calming the storms of life. Many things he does for us by the powers which his gospel has brought to our knowledge and use, both for ourselves and others, just as modern medical science developed through the gospel and used by faith is even better than miracles for daily life.
“To the Hydrographic Office of the United States is mainly due the credit of bringing into prominence and forcing on the notice of seamen in various publications the great importance of this prop
erty of oil under circumstances when life and property Oiling the Sea.
are endangered by breaking seas and the extreme facil
ity and trifling expense of its employment. Thanks to their efforts the fact is now well known to all English-speaking mariners, and many are the instances of the successful use of oil.
“The facts are briefly these: In the heaviest gales at sea, when breaking seas are a source of danger to small or heavily laden vessels, or an inconvenience and discomfort to larger or more seaworthy ones, a very small quantity of oil, skilfully applied to suit the circumstances, spreads upon the surface of the water with marvelous rapidity and forms a perfect breakwater, the raging waves being instantaneously transformed into a harmless swell, which quietly lifts the ship without any of the violent shocks and blows caused by the impact of an almost wall-like mass of water about to break. Spray alone comes on board in place of the sheets of water and green seas which often do so much damage. Admiral Cloué calculates, from a number of instances where the quantity of oil used and the speed of the vessel are given, that the film of oil which causes this marvelous and
beneficent effect can be but little more than one three-hundred-thousandth of an inch in thickness.
“Experience already goes to show that a small quantity of oil is more efficacious than a free application of it, the film apparently spreading more quickly. Less than half a gallon an hour seems to secure the largest ship from being boarded by the waves.”—The Churchman.
“The captain of the steamship Polynesia recently in a cyclone applied oil to the angry waves with perfect success. He slung a leaking oil-tank over the side of the ship and the oil kept the waves from breaking within the circle on which the oil spread. The great waves came on just as fiercely as usual, but the oil tended to make them pass under and beyond the vessel, instead of hammering the sides and deck.”—Christian Advocate, Sept., 1885.
The captain, taking an oil-cruse that would hold perhaps a gill, stood at the stern and poured a tiny stream of the liquid over the gunwale into the boiling waters below. The effect was instantaneous and magical. A great, wide, smooth track was created in the wake of the ship, where huge billows had been a moment before. “Occasionally," continued the captain, “when we have been in the midst of very heavy seas, I have helped matters very much by tying a bag on each side of the ship and letting the oil drop from them drop by drop. You know many of our English harbors are constructed with pipes across the entrance filled with oil which may be tapped in bad weather when a ship is trying to gain refuge.”
TYPES AND EMBLEMS.-Sin always raises a storm, as it did in Jonah's case. All the diseases, oppressions, cruelties, gnawings of conscience, lives without hope, and hearts without rest, are a part of the tempest raised by sin. But the greatest
** The Tempest fury of the storm is in the future. There is no true human escape from this storm. No earthly voice can bid the winds and waves to cease. But Christ, by his forgiving love, says, “Peace, be still," for all that call on him, and arches over all the bow of peace.
(1) “The boat is the Church of Christ, and it sails across the ocean of the world's history to the other side' of the life beyond the grave.”—Ellicott.
“Ours is a ship on a voyage, not a ship in a harbor; urch a ship in progress.”—Macdonald. Storm. (2) The disciples are in this boat toiling and laboring
anxiously to take the boat to the place where the Lord commanded.
(3) Their Lord Jesus Christ is in the boat with them. There is no church in which Jesus does not dwell.
(4) The tempest represents the storms of persecution, of opposisition, of worldliness, of false doctrine, and every opposing force which the great enemy of good can excite against the people of God.
(5) Jesus sometimes seems asleep in the storm. He lets the storm rage and does not at once interfere. The delay seems long, and the faint-hearted, looking at the waves rather than at Jesus, sometimes lose courage. But the object of the delay is to increase our faith.
(6) Our hope lies not in the absence of danger, but in the presence of Christ, who is able to control the storm. No church with Christ in it can be wrecked or lost. More of the living Christ, more of his love, more of his teaching, more faith in him, more prayer to him, more of his Holy Spirit, more of his holy lise-these are the salvation and hope of the Church.
WRECK OF THE SPREE.-Mr. Moody and Gen. O. O. Howard, with many others, were passengers on the steamer Spree in the autumn of 1892, when the great shaft broke and the whole company were in momentary danger of sinking. There was a great prayermeeting on board, led by Mr. Moody, and while they were praying help came. General Howard thus speaks of the relation of prayer to their rescue:
“Did the people of the Spree receive help miraculously from the Heavenly Father? In these things—that is, in extreme dangers-it has been my good fortune to have had abundant experience. But I cannot tell where the natural and ordinary helps of Providence end or where the supernatural begins. The finite will never be allowed to know this dividing line. I only know this, at this time, on this ship, as at other times in my life, the demonstration is as clear as daylight that the Lord is a hearer and is an answerer of the prayers of his children. He evidently loves to arrange his blessings as he