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ANECDOTES, SELECTIONS, AND GEMS.
Anecdotes, Selections, and Gems.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE KING. At our little village chapel, the other evening, a few of the villagers who love the Saviour's name, and who find that it "is good to draw near to God," gathered together to offer their evening sacrifice, and to present their petition to the King. The King was present, present with smiles, promises, and blessings. He took his seat on "the throne of grace;" he showed that he still was gracious, and the promised Prompter moved the suppliants forward. Rom. viii. 26. The suppliants appeared in court dress, "the robe of righteousness," Isaiah lxi. 10, and were cheerful and courageous in their addresses to the throne. There was a happy solemnity felt, the glory cloud appeared, the light of the divine countenance was lifted up, something of heaven was shadowed forth. A message from the throne was read, it consisted of "good words and comfortable words." Zech. i. 13. One of the suppliants being permitted to speak in the King's presence, with a view to encourage this little company, remarked1. That God gives a heart to pray. The new heart, which is the praying heart, and the spirit of prayer, are alike the gifts of God. The prayer he indites he also accepts; the prayer he breathes into the heart ascends to him like sweet incense. 2. That he lends an ear to such prayer. It is the Father's ear, and shews that he is condescending and kind.
"Lo to the social band he bows
And while his angels sing around,
3. Such he favours with a promise. A promise full of plain and precious meaning, one that meets the case, a blessed encourager. 4. To such he grants the blessing. "He giveth more grace;" "Surely, in blessing I will bless thee."-The suppliants returned to their homes, gladdened that they had been indulged with the favour the King bears to his people, and
As favourites of the Heavenly King,
PRAYER ANSWERED.-The vessel of captain H. was assailed by an unusually severe storm, which continued forty-five days and nights in succession, and they were driven far from their course. The crew had become nearly exhausted by hard and long toiling; and to add to their affliction, fainine began to threaten them with a
ANECDOTES, SELECTIONS, AND GEMS.
death more appalling than a watery grave. The captain had with him his wife, two daughters, and a crew of ten persons. As their provisions became short, his wife grew provident and careful of the pittance that fell to their family share. She would eat but little, lest her husband should starve; the children would eat but little, for fear the mother would suffer; and the captain refused to eat any, but left his portion for his suffering family. At length they were reduced to a scanty allowance for twenty-four hours, in the midst of a storm, and one thousand miles from land. Captain H. was a man who feared God. In this extremity he ordered the steward to bring the remaining provisions on deck, and spread the same on the tarpaulin that covers the hatch, and falling down beside the fragments of bread and meat before him, he lifted up his voice in prayer to Him who heareth out of the deep, and said, "O Thou who didst feed Elijah by ravens while in the wilderness, and who commanded that the widow's cruise of oil and barrel of meal should not fail, look down upon us in our present distress, and grant that this food may be so multiplied that the lives now in jeopardy may be preserved." After this he rose from his knees, went to the companion-way, and found his wife and children engaged in the same holy exercise. He exhorted them to pray on; and assured them that God would answer prayer, and that not one soul then on board would be lost. Scarcely had he uttered these words, when his mate, who had been at the mast-head for some time on the look-out, exclaimed, "Sail, O! Sail, O!" At this crisis the captain shouted with swelling gratitude, "What! has God sent the ravens already ?" And in one hour from that time, through the friendly sail, their barrels of bread and meat were multiplied, and they were saved from an awful death.
REMARKABLE DELIVERANCES.-Several of the members of the church at Chatham were apprehended and put on board of a ship to be transported to America. But the wind shifted and detained them in port so long, that the captain began to suspect he should not be able to proceed on his voyage while they continued on board : he therefore landed the baptists, and the wind immediately shifting in his favour, he made sail and left them.-The magistrates of Seven Oaks, one Lord's-day, sent the police officers to the meeting at Bradburn: the officers seized all the men in the congregation and carried them to Seven Oaks, where they were detained in custody all night. In the morning when the justices were assembled, they sent for the prisoners; and after some conversation with them dismissed them all. With hearts full of wonder and gratitude, the men returned to the meeting-house to unite in giving thanks to God for this unexpected deliverance. When they arrived there, to their surprise and joy, they found the women still assembled; who had not left the house, but had spent the whole night and morning in fasting and prayer to God on their behalf!
Wood's History of Baptists.
ANECDOTES, SELECTIONS, AND GEMS.
ANOTHER SAD INSTANCE has recently come under my notice of the sad effects of intemperance in robbing the church of God. It is of a young man who, a few years since, was actively engaged in sabbath school instruction-whose character stood high-whose prospects, when starting in life, were unusually good, but who is now separated from the church of Christ-has lost what might, with attention, have proved a good business-overwhelmed his parents with sorrow, and entailed misery on the partner of his life, all through imbibing a love for strong liquors. Oh! what an insidious and dangerous enemy this is. Let christians unite to expel the destroying monster from the face of the earth. Not till then can we reasonably expect the dawn of the glorious millennium. G. R. G.
SELECTIONS FROM ROBERT HALL.
THE LIVING WAY.-" By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh." The veil of his flesh, not whole, but torn, rent, lacerated, to let out his precious blood as he is the bread of life, not whole, but broken, bruised, and smitten of God for us. This rending of the veil of his flesh was typified by that which took place in the veil of the most holy place at the time of his death. A new way;" a way unknown to the wisdom of man, and hidden, for the most part, from the ancient saints. "A living way;" a way in which we are made to live before God; "because I live, ye shall live also." "I give unto my sheep eternal life."
"LET US DRAW NEAR" in prayer, in private devotion; often let us be asking for pardon, guidance, support. Every day we should have much to do with God; we have greater concerns to transact with him, than with all the world beside; He is emphatically that Being with whom we have to do! And we have open and full access; we need not come in a servile, trembling posture; we may come with boldness, as to a father, led by the hand of an elder brother. And not only in moments of stated devotion, but in any moments, in the midst of business and crowds, we should often draw near to God: thoughts are quick, conceptions rapid: nothing need keep us long from prayer.
NEGLECT OF CHRIST.-The remembrance of a neglected Christ will rankle in the minds of the condemned for ever and ever! To reject the gospel is to turn the very mercy of God into wrath; to make the very prospect of heaven, now opened to you, the precursor of your ruin; to pervert the only remedy into a greater aggravation of your guilt! Wherever the Saviour is not set for the rise, He is set for the fall, of men. How shall any who reject Him escape? when no other name is given under heaven, by which we must be saved.
THE WAY OF LIFE OPEN.-God has never beset the way of eternal life with impracticable obstructions. Piety, in unfavourable situations, has the charm of a myrtle or a rose in the desert, lovely in the eye of God and man.
ANECDOTES, SELECTIONS, AND GEMS.
THE CITIZENS OF HEAVEN.-Christians have a much nearer and more important relation to heaven than to earth. With earth, although they are at present its inhabitants, they are connected by the body with heaven, by the soul: the former is merely a transient, the latter an everlasting connection: the former is but as a shadow, the latter the real substance: here they have but a dissoluble tent, there "a house eternal in the heavens." In proportion as they realise their heavenly calling, they lose sight of the distinctions of time, of riches or poverty, health or sickness, prosperity or affliction, life or death; the changeable colours of this mortal scene!
On Forgetting GOD.-Have you never known what bitterness is attached to forgetfulness of God? And what a wretch must he be, who cannot bear to converse with himself; to whose peace it is essential that he should expunge from his thoughts his soul and his Maker, as an incumbrance and a nuisance!
WHAT MUST WE DO?-This is the command, the will, the work, of God, comprehensive of all that he requires, that we should believe in the Saviour. This silences the thunders of Sinai, suspends the curses of the law, extracts the sting of death. What a favour, to make that our duty which is our greatest privilege!
ON DOUBTING.-We may be permitted to doubt indeed of some things; we may doubt of our state before God; such doubting may be the consequence of a low degree of grace, and a laxity in our walk; but we are not permitted to doubt of Christ's ability and readiness to save.
THE GRACES that are most spiritual and heavenly in their nature, that flourish in the shade, and court not the eye of man, have most respect to heaven.
Facts and Hints.
"THRICE is he arm'd who has his quarrel just, And he but naked, though locked up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted." "THE wicked flee when no man pursueth; but the righteous is bold as a lion."
"Man wants but little here below,
Nor wants that little long."
"Having food and raiment, let us learn therewith to be content."
A GOOD parent will not be anxious about leaving money for his children, which may be their ruin. The best thing he can do in such a matter is to teach them how to work for what they need.
ONE of the greatest follies of which any man can be guilty in this life is heaping up riches, not knowing who shall gather them.
THE words into which the twenty-six letters of our alphabet may be formed, amount to 620,448,401,733,239,439,360,000.
IN Ireland there are five counties and seventy large towns without a bookseller's shop!
THEY do not cost much. It does not take long to utter them. They never blister the tongue or lips on their passage into the world, or occasion any other kind of bodily suffering; and we have never heard of any mental trouble arising from this quarter. Though they do not cost much, yet they accomplish much. 1. They help one's own good nature and good-will. One cannot be in a habit of this kind, without thereby pecking away something of the granite roughness of his own nature. Soft words will soften his own soul. Philosophers tell us that the angry words a man uses in his passion are fuel to the flame of his wrath, and make it blaze the more fiercely. Why, then, should not words of the opposite character produce opposite results, and that most blessed of all passions of the soul, kindness, be augmented by kind words? People that are for ever speaking kindly, are for ever disinclining themselves to ill-temper. 2. Kind words make other people goodnatured. Cold words freeze people, and hot words scorch them, and sarcastic words irritate them, and bitter words make them bitter, and wrathful words make them wrathful. And kind words also produce their own image on men's souls; and a beautiful image it is. They soothe, and quiet, and comfort the hearer. They shame him out of his sour, morose, unkind feelings; and he has to become kind himself. There is such a rush of all other kinds of words in our days, that it seems desirable to give kind words a chance among them. There are vain words, idle words, hasty words, spiteful words, silly words, and empty words. Now kind words are better than the whole of them; and it is a pity that, among the improvements of the present age, birds of this feather might not have more of a chance than they have had to spread their wings. Kind words are in danger of being driven from the field, like frightened pigeons, in these days of boisterous words, and warlike words, and passionate words. They have not the brass to stand up, like so many grenadiers, and fight their own way through the throng. Besides, they have been out of use so long, that they hardly know whether they have any right to make their appearance any more in our bustling world; not knowing but that perhaps the world was done with them, and would not like their company any more. Let us welcome them back. We have not done with them. We have not yet begun to use them in such abundance as they ought to be used. We cannot spare them.
New York Evangelist.