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BY MRS. S. K. FURMAN.
The gray twilight began to break above the
But of white hands softly reaching,
As the shadow o'er her fell, long, low line of hills, and with its dawn came
Downward from the golden bastion the sound of the factory bell. The accustomed
Of the eternal citadel." sound caught the ear of the sleeper, and, starting wildly up, she exclaimed: “It is the bell, sister, we shall be latel" then
Fast o'er my window panes
Now loud and fearful strains The sister, brothers, and father came one by Ending in plaintive moans subdued and tender. one to look at the little form as it lay straight
Out through the starless night ened out upon the hard table, dressed in a pretty The grieving winds with wandering feet are straying; robe of white which Mrs. Holmes had brought, Sad funeral requiems and then they went their ways, leaving the In concert wild their shattered lyres are playing. mother alone with her dead. Ben only came
0, angel of decay, stealing back and stood at her feet, while his
With wearied, drooping wing, still thou art flying whole frame shook with a convulsive sobbing. To shroud sweet summer's couch It was the first touch of feeling she had seen in Where beauty laid her golden head when dying. the boy for many a long day, and the mother's It was but yesterday heart and arms opened wide in sympathy. He The breeze came laden with the breath of flowers, laid his head on her lap, and their tears mingled.
And all the hills and rales And thus her heart was comforted even while Rang with the joyous songs of sunny hours. she mourned.
The zephyrs sighing sweet The farmer went about his work, but it was
Through the young foliage crept with soft caresses, with a heavy heart. It was death's first visit,
And the tall, grand old trees
Above us waved their bright green sheltering +resses. and he started back aghast at the specter. He tried to comfort himself by looking over his
Among their rich perfumes
The deep-voiced winds lay hushed to dream-like bank stock, and reflecting that it was larger
sleeping, than any of his neighbors', but for some cause it
That now like changeful friend did not cheer him as usual. He bustled about
Leads forth the wrathful storms above them sweeping. his farm, and calculated the gain of this field
Yet June again will come, and that, but it was no better comforter than the
All things to clothe with beautiful creation, bank stock.
And earth, rejeweled, wear “Death will come here again after awhile," he A lovelier crown for this her desolation. thought; "then whose will all these things be?''
Not so the rifled heart; He thought of his two undutiful boys and the One season only e'er hath it of roses, daughter his life had made bitter by his avarice. The fragrant bloom of youth,
“Not one of 'em loves me a mite," he said. Where innocence in trust and hope reposes “ Poor little Hattie used to some, I know.”
So delicate and true, Then the doctor's words-“That mill has Ill shadowings of looks and thoughts unspoken, killed her"-rang through his brain, and, sitting
Alike with ruder blasts down on the river's brink, he bent his head upon
Of scorn and hate may leave them pale and broken. his brown hard hands and wept. Then he saw
The autumn of the heart, how darkly the sullen, swollen stream flowed on, Ah, who may tell the struggles long and dreary and a mad thought rushed through his brain to
Its early flowers to save
Ere from the contest turning faint and weary, bury himself in its bosom, and drown forever the
If all unblessed to feel remorse that was gnawing his own. " But then they would get it all," he thought; The bitter weeds of cold distrust upspringing,
And notes of sad complaint so he rose up and walked away.
Where melodies untaught were light and ringing! In a shady nook of the village graveyard they
Life's but a fitful year, laid her down to rest, with the sweet hope that
And joys go down behind the clouds of sorrow; the fair young spirit had entered on a glorious Yet to the last may gleam rest within the paradise of God.
Some wayside blossom for each coming morrow. “ Therefore think not, ye that loved her,
Patience and charity
May yield their goodly fruitage ripe and tender,
On which the soul may thrive
Amid the shadows of the heart's November.
"LIGHT IS SOWN FOR THE RIGHTEOUS."
FREE MORAL AGENCY.
BY SARAH B. CLARK.
BY MARIA KING.
Treceived and understood by the intelligent
NOT, planted, but sown--sown broadcast over doctrine of
the length and breath of God's boundless creation-sown with an unsparing hand through and Christian portion of the world much more the limitless dominion of God's providence- generally at the present time than ever before. sown, not to remain inactive and lifeless beneath Arminianism has rapidly progressed since its the clods of earthly darkness, but to spring up clear exposition by Wesley till even Calvinism in every step of the Christian's way till his has largely yielded to its teachings. There are earthly portion is but a foretaste of the uncloud-still
, however, many obstacles to retard its proged sunlight of heaven. Look out, desponding ress. First, perhaps, among these, is the dislike disciple, and see if you can not discover some which men have to acknowledging that they are of the light springing up, which the Lord your individually responsible to God for the motives God hath sown for you-search diligently amid which have governed their lives. They would the clods of your sorrow, and see if the bright charge their sins to the force of circumstances, buds of gladness are not breaking through “for to the influence of others, to the natures with the upright in heart.”
which they were created, and even to the Deity It has been sown, and it springs forth in the himself before they would confess that they and sunlight in the rays which enter not the closed they alone are the guilty ones before God. windows of the natural heart; but light up the Calvinism exerts an extensive influence, and inner sanctuary of the renewed soul, and whisper even when not embraced, lends its glass while of the Sun of righteousness that illumines the many portions of the Scriptures are read. It is city of the blessed. It peeps forth in the star doubtful whether, in a careful perusal of God's light, breathing of Bethlehem—the morning star revealed will, the entirely-unprejudiced mind and the shining firmament of those who “lead would ever fail to recognize man's freedom to many to righteousness.” The spring brings it accept or refuse the offers of salvation, were it to proclaim the winter of the soul is past, the not interpreted as read, according to preconflowers of hope and the singing birds of joyceived views or teachings. and trust have come instead. The summer with This subject is not always as clearly treated ripening suns and storms, autumn with its golden from the pulpit as it should be. Our most fruits, and winter with its white robes are full of approved text-books on intellectual and moral tender blades of the light our Father hath “ sown philosophy do not treat clearly or understandfor the righteous." You will find them spring ingly of the human will. Some authors have up every-where, and they bring no sorrow with ignored the subject altogether, while others hare them.
treated it so vaguely that we should fail to recog. But He is still sowing. The bright smile fades nize it as the great motive power in man, which from the faces we love. The cold lips, the folded enables him to comply with the relations with hands, and the still heart are laid in the dark which he was created, whether perceived by the grave—there is no gladness in the deserted | aid of reason, intuition, or consciousness. The home. But our God is sowing light; he has ability to perceive and act in accordance with buried the brightest ray for a little season, that the design of his being constitutes the great we might reap in fresher beauty a purer light difference between man and the brute creation, that will never fade. Even now it springeth up, making the one a rational, the other an irrational and by and by in our other home we may bind being. Pope truly said, richer sheaves for the sad sowing of to-day.
“ But binding nature fast in fate Watch over them for the gladness that spring
Left free the human will." eth for the upright in heart, and when the shadows lay dark across the pathway, remember that The physical world only exists in subjection to beneath them the light is being sown, that we established laws. Man's physical nature is submay gather them in golden sheaves in the har- ject to these laws, but his will is free, and he can vesting of heaven.
choose either good or evil. God has created him a free moral agent, and can not deprive bim
of this freedom and leave him a responsible LIVING IN THE WORLD.
being without first changing the laws he observed Living always in the world makes one as unfit in creating him. for living out of it as always living out of it God, the Creator and Ruler of the universe, is does for living in it.
a free moral agent. We were made in his im
age, which the apostle assures us is the image disobedience to his commands and the rejection of “ righteousness and true holiness;" therefore, of his offers of mercy. That there will be reour moral natures are in the likeness of his. wards and punishment in the future we can not The serpent, in beguiling Eve, said that if they doubt. This state is one of probation, and we ate of the forbidden fruit they should be can learn something of its importance from gods, knowing good and evil.” While we claim God's having provided the ransom he has to save that God is a perfectly free being, we can not us from the terrible effects of sin. God will be conceive of his sinning, for to his infinite purity no more omnipotent in the future than in the and holiness there could be no temptation; and present. We suffer now the results of the violathe apostle James says, Let no man say when tion of physical and, to some extent, of moral he is tempted that he is tempted of God, for God laws; but if the distribution of rewards and can not be tempted, neither tempteth he any punishment were final on the earth, they would man.” God has made man in his own image, be very unequal; therefore we conclude that there and placed before him two courses of action, is to be a future judgment, which we also have with the inevitable results of each. If he chooses revealed to us. the right, he gives him grace to follow it; if the God's omniscience does not affect our moral wrong, he constantly warns him of the disastrous agency. He doubtless knew from the beginning consequences that will surely follow. It is often all that would be, since nothing can exist without asked, “If God is omnipotent, why did he not his power, but he gave us full freedom to choose make man so that he could not sin ?" Surely good or evil. He will never force us to serve the Creator of all the earth has a right to do as him. The only service he will accept must be seemeth him best, and his creatures have no given in spirit and in truth, for he only seeketh right to question him. All his works are to such to worship him as love him for himself. praise him, and he is “Lord over all.” He is free, pure, spirit, and because he is he would not be satisfied with the worship of beings whom he
BY AN OLD CONTRIBUTOR.
WORDS FOR MUSIC. had so created that they could only act in accordance with fixed laws. No earthly monarch, unless a tyrant, is satisfied merely with the hom
0, would I were alone! age of menials, of those who do not dare to do
For a dancing wind hath blown otherwise than obey his behests, but he requires
Throughout the shadowy forest of my soul,
And all its dreams like trees the acknowledgment of his sovereignty by his
Awake to harmonies peers, and their willing and ready allegiance and
That lightly, lightly rollobedience. But while an earthly king might
0, would we were alone, fear to allow his subjects the freedom to choose
I and my happy soull whether they would obey him or not, through the
Soft summer light hath-shone, fear that they would not render to him the sery
Like a sweet benison, ice he required, or that they might aspire even
Where chilling wint'ry shadows long havo lain; to his throne, God in his infinite power can
I weary of the sound, have no such fear, and the worship that is ren
Of the gossiping around, dered him is only well pleasing when received The laughter quick and vain. from those who, knowing both good and evil,
0, would we were alone, have resisted the evil that they may do his will.
I and my luminous brain! Man has not only all the light he needs to
A sweet delight hath grown, enable him to choose and follow the right, but
Like a white flower blown every inducement that Divine love can offer. When the lessening snow-hills shrink apart, When by sin and transgression he had incurred
Within the sacred clime the penalty of death, God in his infinite mercy
Where I keep tryst with Timo, gave his Son, that “whosoever believeth in him
Yet mock his feeble art.
0, would we were alone, should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
I and my charmed heart! He has also given the Holy Spirit to warn, to reprove, and instruct in the way of righteous
0, the dancing wind hath blown,
And the summer light bath shone God never permits man to sin. If he sins, it
Through my soul's forest, shadowy and deep;
And such a faery throng is in direct opposition to God and to his revealed
Awaits me that I long will concerning him. With this view of man's
My sacred tryst to keep. free will, there can remain no room to charge
0, would I were alone God with injustice in inflicting punishment for
To muse, and smile, and weep!
THE SUN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS.
circumstances attending it, is given by the evan
gelists in a style which defies imitation; it is a BY REV. T. B. M'FALLS.
simple narrative of facts written in the plainest THERE is a sublime majesty in the teachings manner conceivable, without any effort to satisfy
phatically the book. We can not read it aright wise. This simplicity in Scripture is one of the without having our minds awed and impressed internal proofs of its divine origin. with its solemn truths. It makes us feel while The advent of our Savior had long been exstudying it as if we were conversing with dig-pected. In him the hopes of the world were nity in his secret chamber. It is a storehouse concentrated. Men knew and acknowledged of knowledge for both the young and the aged. that they could not overcome evil and do good It is the safeguard of morals and the messenger without they were taught by the gods. The of hope.
It is the basis of faith and the chart Jews looked for him as the person who should of heaven. It triumphs over the flimsy and restore Israel to its former greatness and grandfanciful teachings of the various schools of phi- eur. The Gentiles expected him as the person losophy. It discloses to man that he is mortal who should throw light on their darkness and and yet immortal-a doctrine which can not be give them wholesome laws. Both the Jews and obliterated by the paltry attempts of infidels and the Gentiles were in a wretched state at the atheists. It is the sure compass, ever pointing time Christ made his appearance. Their feet to the star of virtue, which no attraction can had wandered out of the way of peace, their cause to deviate a hair's breadth from the proper minds were harassed with doubts and fears.
It is the reflection, the counterpart of Here we see the poor Jewish mother hurrying to God's own mind and intentions toward man. It Gehenna and placing her darling babe in the is a
outstretched and burning arms of Moloch, that
she may gain peace of mind and appease the “Most wondrous book! bright candle of the Lord!
anger of her God; or there we see the Gentile Star of eternity! tủe only star By which the bark of man can navigate
mother throwing her offspring to the devouring The sea of life, and gain the coast of bliss
alligator of the Ganges for the same purpose. Securely."
They had got into a state of darkness; they were
blind concerning the things of God and the And we can not get the full meaning—the whole things which belonged to their salvation. And import of Scripture by hasty glances; a verse is they had become despairing inhabitants of the like the diamond, the more we rub it the brighter land of intellectual darkness—they had sat down it becomes. We should, therefore, be very care- in it like a traveler lost in an interminable forest ful in reading Scripture, whether the Old Testa- after wandering about in search of some path that ment or the New, that we pass not over parts as would lead out into the open country, wearied though they might be unimportant. Neither and hungry—sat down with his face buried in his should we always be content with the primary hands and gave up to despair. Having wandered meaning and the obvious application. “Scrip- far from the light of revelation, they rejected the ture has a hidden sense as well as an open, and doctrine of the resur
urrection, and thus literally to them who search for it with prayer, many a sat in the region and shadow of death. "Death beautiful import is disclosed which would never stood between this region and the light of life, be suspected by the careless or cursory observer. and, casting his shadow over the inhabitants, all A verse is often like the nest on which the were involved in a continued cloud of intellectual parent bird broods; when the parent bird is let darkness, misery, and sin. The heavenly sun go there are young birds within, each of which was continually eclipsed to them till the glorious has only to be cherished and watched, and it will time when Jesus Christ, the true light, shone be 'covered with silver wings and her feathers forth in the beauty of holiness and truth.” like gold.'”
Before the Creator uttered that grand fiat, The most careless reader, however, can not "Let there be light,” darkness was upon the face help noticing the wonderful simplicity as well as of the great deep; all matter was in a circumbeauty of style in all the inspired writings. fused mass; no ray of light penetrated the There is no effort at display. The most import- gloomy darkness; and when there was light, it ant events of the world—events which affect the only presented the earth without form, and void; destiny of nations and the doom of individuals, but when the sun was set in the firmament of are recorded with an exceedingly small number heaven to give light to the earth, then earth of words. The advent of our Lord Jesus Christ, brought forth the fruit tree, the grass, the herb, considering its unutterable importance and the and the delicate flower, presenting the most
beautiful globe in the whole universe; even the the dungeon, like beings in distress, stretching angels were charmed with its magnificence, and out their hands for assistance. Like those delithe "morning stars sang together for joy.” So cate and sickly things, before the Sun of rightbefore the coming of the Lord of glory, who eousness appeared, mankind sought anxiously is the great light in the moral firmament, there every little ray of light, feeling their way through was light-philosophical light; but it only pre- the darkness, hoping to find some opening sented a world without form-a confused mass, that would lead out into a world of light and void of all beauty and all good, and it was only of beauty. when the Day-spring from on high visited us to Socrates, and Plato, and other philosophers give light to them that sit in darkness and in the had only faint glimmerings of light. They shadow of death, that the moral earth began to arrived at truth only through a long and wearishoot forth the choicest plants and produce the some process of induction; but Christ needed richest fruits; then these sons of God shouted not reason to find out truth. Truth flashed from for joy, and made the heavenly arches ring with him as brilliancy from the diamond—truth ematheir loud anthems of praise.
nated from him as light from the sun. “In him The Scriptures generally set forth the birth of was life, and the life was the light of men.” Christ under the figure of the rising sun. How Yet there are thousands in the Christian world beautiful is this figure! One morning we strolled who suppose that the light of nature is sufficient out before the lark had arisen from her nest in to lead us to right conceptions of God and relig. the meadow, or even the beasts of the field had ion, thereby rejecting Christ or imputing to God shaken the dew from their manes; all nature a work of supererogation in sending Christ into seemed to be locked up in sleep. While we were the world to enlighten mankind. admiring silent nature, and meditating on God's Is the light of nature sufficient? This is a sleeping creatures, there appeared in the east question of fact, not of speculation, for the way beams of soft, mellow light streaming up toward to know what nature can do is to take nature the zenith of the sky. The little birds in the alone and test its power. There was a time bushes commenced chirping and shaking their when men had little else than nature to go to, wings as if making ready to fly out on the first and that is the proper time to examine to see bright ray of the sun. The smoke curling up what mere unassisted nature can do in religion. from the chimneys of the neighboring farm- Nay, there are still nations under the sun who houses floated gracefully in little clouds over the are, as to religion, in a mere state of nature. lawn. Presently there appeared in the horizon Here, then, we may hope to see natural religion a "little streak of insufferable brightness,” which in its full perfection, for there is no want of natincreased gradually to the full orb of day; then ural reason nor any room to complain of prejubroke forth the whole orchestra of nature, and dices and prepossessions; yet these nations are the throats of the feathered songsters quivered held in chains of darkness, and are given up to with music. The dew-drops hanging in little the blindest superstitions and idolatry. globules to the spars of grass sparkled and glit- wanted not reason before the coming of Christ, tered with beauty. Earth seemed a heaven, and nor opportunity nor inclination to improve it. sin a fable.
Arts and sciences had long before obtained their So, also, there were little beams of light loom- just perfection; the philosophy, oratory, and ing up from the darkness, announcing the com- poesy of those ages are still the delight and ening of the Day-spring from on high, for of him tertainment of this. Religion was not the least did Moses and the prophets write. Isaiah wrote: part of their inquiry. They searched all the re“The people that walk in darkness have seen a cesses of reason and nature, yet their religion great light: they that dwell in the land of the was their reproach, and the service they paid to shadow of death, upon them hath the light their gods was a dishonor to them and to themshined.” Malachi wrote: “Upon you shall the selves. And what reason have we to suppose if Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his left again to reason and nature we would not wings.” The forerunner, John the Baptist, was run into the same errors and absurdities? Have the bright morning star, which precedes and we more reason than those who have
gone before announces the rising sun. Christ admirably us? Wisdom, and prudence, and cunning are answers to this description. He is to us what now what they formerly were; nor can this age the sun is to the material world—the dispenser show human nature in any one character exalted of light. We have seen vegetables growing in beyond the examples that antiquity has left us. caverns or cellars, pale and delicate, not beauti- Can we show greater instances of civil or politfil, and without strength, creeping slowly toward ical wisdom than are to be found in the governa ray of light that penetrated a small crevice of | ments of Greece and Rome? And to this day