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SPECIALLY SELECTED WITH A VIEW TO THE NEEDS OF
THE PULPIT AND PLATFORM,
REV. R. A. BERTRAM.
HAD 1878 ·
*Things of deep sense we may in prose untold, Foy
Well-sounding verses are the charms we use
1. AARON: and Christ.
SEE Aaron, God's anointed priest,
Within the veil appear,
Presenting Israel's prayer.
A greater priest than he--
For you, my friends, and me.
Deep on His heart engraved ;
Of all His love has saved.
Light and perfection shine ;
A Saviour all Divine.
For sinners, is His own;
Perfumes the holy throne.
Though I am weak and vile ;
And see the Father smile.-Yohn Newton.
Jehovah had so oft His will reveald,
Ten thousand times ten thousand sung
Loud anthems round the throne,
Took up a song unknown ;
Could those high notes attain,
United in the strain,
The angels ever bear
To swell the chorus there ;
And tune my broken voice,
Exchanged for endless joys !
2. AARON: his death.
With trembling hand He hasted to unclasp the priestly robe, And cast it o'er his son, and on his head The mitre place ; while with a feeble voice, He bless'd, and bade him keep his garments pure From blood of souls. But then, as Moses raised The mystic breastplate, and that dying eye Caught the radiance of those precious stones, By whose oracular and fearful light
4. ABIDING IN CHRIST. Prayer for Christ's One half hath not been told me presence.
Of all Thy power and grace; That mystic word of Thine, O sovereign Lord,
Thy beauty, Lord, and glory, Is all too pure, too high, too deep for me;
The wonders of Thy love, Weary of striving, and with longing faint,
Shall be the endless story I breathe it back again in prayer to Thee.
Of all Thy saints above. Abide in me, I pray, and I in Thee !
6. ABILITIES. Development of From this good hour, 0, leave me nevermore! Then shall the discord cease, the wound be heal'd,
Call now to mind what high capacious powers
Lie folded up in man; how far beyond The life-long bleeding of the soul be o'er.
The praise of mortals may the eternal growth Abide in me ; o'ershadow by Thy love
Of Nature, to perfection half Divine, Each half-form'd purpose and dark thought of sin; Expand the blooming soul! What pity, then, Quench, e'er it rise, each selfish, low desire,
Should sloth's unkindly fogs depress to earth And keep my soul as Thine, calm and divine. Her tender blossom, choke the streams of life, As some rare perfume in a vase of clay
And blast her spring! Far otherwise design'd Pervades it with a fragrance not its own,
Almighty wisdom ; Nature's happy cares So, when Thou dwellest in a mortal soul,
The obedient heart far otherwise incline. All heaven's own sweetness seems around it thrown.
Witness the sprightly joy when aught unknown
Strikes the quick sense, and wakes each active power The soul alone, like a neglected harp,
To brisker measures : witness the neglect Grows out of tune, and needs that Hand Divine :
Of all familiar prospects, though beheld Dwell Thou within it, tune and touch the chords,
With transport once ; the fond attentive gaze Till every note and string shall answer Thine.
Of young astonishment; the sober zeal Abide in me : there have been moments blest, Of age, commenting on prodigious things; When I have heard Thy voice and felt Thy power ;
For such the bounteous providence of Heaven, Then evil lost its grasp ; and passion, hush'd, In every breast implanting this desire Own'd the divine enchantment of the hour.
Of objects new and strange, to urge us on
With unremitting labour to pursue These were but seasons, beautiful and rare ;
Those sacred stores that wait the ripening soul, Abide in me, and they shall ever be ;
In Truth's exhaustless bosom.---Mark Akenside. Fulfil at once Thy precept and my prayer, Come, and abide in me, and I in Thee.
7. ABILITIES. Difference of Harriet Beecher Stowe.
ALAS! what differs more than man from man? 5. ABIDING IN CHRIST : our only safety. And whence this difference?—whence but from himO LAMB of God! still keep me
self? Near to Thy wounded side;
For, see the universal race endow'd 'Tis only then in safety
With the same upright form! The sun is fix'd,
And the infinite magnificence of heaven,
Within the reach of every human eye :
The sleepless ocean murmurs in all ears;
The vernal field infuses fresh delight
Into all hearts. Throughout the world of sense,
Even as an object is sublime or fair,
That object is laid open to the view
Without reserve or veil ; and as a power
Is salutary, or its influence sweet,
Are each and all enabled to perceive
That power, that influence, by impartial law.
Gifts nobler are vouchsafed alike to all ;-
Reason,-and, with that reason, smiles and tears ;
Imagination, freedom of the will,
Conscience to guide and check ; and death
| To be foretasted-immortality presumed.
And worship now the God who rules
Helen Hunt, from the Koran.'
9. ABRAHAM. The Sacrifice of
Strange then, nor less than monstrous, might be
deem'd The failure, if the Almighty, to this point Liberal and undistinguishing, should hide The excellence of moral qualities From common understanding ; leaving truth And virtue, difficult, abstruse, and dark ; Hard to be won, and only by a few : Strange, should He deal herein with nice respects, And frustrate all the rest! Believe it not : The primal duties shine aloft like stars; The charities, that soothe, and heal, and bless, Are scatter'd at the feet of man, like flowers. The generous inclination, the just rule, Kind wishes, and good actions, and pure thoughtsNo mystery is here; no special boon For high and not for low-for proudly graced And not for meek in heart.- Wordsworth.
It was noonAnd Abraham on Moriah bow'd himself And buried up his face and pray'd for strength. He could not look upon his son, and pray ; But with his hand upon the clustering curls Of the fair, kneeling boy he pray'd that God Would nerve him for that hour. ... ...... He rose up and laid The wood upon the altar. All was done. He stood a moment-and a deep, quick flash Pass'd o'er his countenance; and then he nerved His spirit with a bitter strength and spoke :
Isaac ! my only son !'-The boy look'd up : * Where is the lamb, my father?' Oh the tones, The sweet, familiar voice of a loved child !-What would its music seem at such an hour ! It was the last deep struggle. Abraham held His loved, his beautiful, his only son, And lifted up his arms and callid on GodAnd lo! God's angel stay'd him and he fell Upon his face and wept.
Nathaniel Parker Willis.
8. ABRAHAM. A Legend of
At night, upon the silent plain,
10. ABSENCE. Effects of All flowers will droop in absence of the sun That waked their sweets.—Dryden. Love reckons hours for months, and days for years ; And every little absence is an age.-Dryden.
11. ABSENCE. Improvement of
What shall I do with all the days and hours
That must be counted ere I see thy face? How shall I charm the interval that lowers
Between this time and that sweet time of grace?
Then came, unheralded, the dawn,
Shall I in slumber steep each weary sense,
Weary with longing ? Shall I flee away Into past days, and with some fond pretence
Cheat myself to forget the present day? Shall love for thee lay on my soul the sin
Of casting from me God's great gift of time? Shall I, these mists of memory lock'd within,
Leave and forget life's purposes sublime? Oh, how or by what means may I contrive
To bring the hour that brings thee back more near? How may I teach my drooping hope to live
Until that blessed time, and thou art here?