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and the loom; they soon became sharers tinued their plots, (2 Thess. iii. with him of “like precious faith.” 1, 2;) churches were planted in the WORK IN THE SYNAGOGUE. — V.4-6.
country around Corinth, 1 Cor. i. 2; Paul was feeble in health and des. 2 Cor. ii, 1; Rom. xvi. 1-16. Paul's ponding in spirit, see 1 Cor. ii. 3; ministry was further sealed by the 2 Cor. xii. 7-9. Help, and comfort Apostolic power of miracles, 2 Cor. were brought to him by his old fellow. xii. 12. The advent of a new Governor labourers : who ? ver. 5. Where had gave the Jews the opportunity for Timothy been since Paul left Berea ? which they had long waited. Who Acts xvii. 14. He afterwards joined was he? He is described by Roman his master at Athens, and was by him historians as a man of great ability, sent to Thessalonica, (1 Thess. iii. 2,) good temper and kindly manners. whence he returns to Corinth. Paul With such a man the Jews hoped to was in absolute need, and these brethren succeed; first, because of his easefulbrought loving help from the Mace- ness; then, because of his ignorance donian churches, 2 Cor. xi. 9; Phil. iv. of Jewish matters. A riot and a rush 16. Paul dictated a letter to the Church brought Paul before Gallio, ver. 12. at Thessalonica, and sent it off by some Courteous Gallio hears the accusation; special messenger, 1 Thess. i. 1. The
sagacious Gallio knows more than the three Evangelists renewed their toil. accusers thought; Paul is not even Whenever the missionaries got up to called upon for his defence; the speak of Jesus, the Jews opposed with judgment is at once given, ver. 14, 15. blasphemies. Perseverance was use- The Jews could not take such a judgless. With a significant gesture Paul ment; will try again; re-commence walked out of the synagogue, and their argument; the officers of the court severed his connection with his are called in, and the pertinacious countrymen, ver. 6.
persecutors expelled from the front of PERSECUTION; SUCCESS ; CONSOLA- the magisterial bench into the outer TION.–V. 7–11. Where must Paul
crowd, ver. 16. The feelings of the carry on his work now ? A good man Greeks, deeply engaged in sympathy who had been a proselyte to the Jewish with Paul, broke out in excitement. faith, and had become a Christian, lived They made an assault upon Sosthenes, close to thesynagogue. In his house, Paul who had succeeded Crispus as ruler of obtains a preaching-room. Two sources the synagogue, and Gallio, not sorry of encouragement were opened to Paul to see the persecutor caught in his own during the anxiety of danger ever near; snare, would not interfere, ver. 17. first, from his God; secondly, from his work. For the first, see ver. 9, 10. REFLECTIONS.—1. Learn a lesson on As to the second, one man of note is the sanctity and dignity of labour.-See mentioned here, (ver. 8,) and his the Apostle at his loom, ver. 3. conversion was deemed of sufficient 2. Personal piety has power over all importance to lead Paul to make an times and circumstances. Consider Paul exception to his ordinary rule—he in the workshop, synagogue, preach. baptized him himself, 1 Cor. i. 14.
ing-room, court. Two others shared the same honour, 3. Christian godliness becomes all Gaius and Stephanas, 1 Cor. i. 14–16; classes.—Some wise, mighty, noble, xvi. 15. Generally the rite of baptism were called; the “many Corinthians" was administered by his helpers. Note were poor and despised when converted. that in each case the household received 4. Note the example of household piety, the faith together with its head. These -how sad when a son or daughter, men were wealthy; but there were not unconverted, renders incomplete the
The mass of converts circle of family piety! were from the humbler walks of life, 1 Cor. i. 26, 27. Thus cheered, the QUESTIONS.—Where did Paul go, on leaving Apostle persevered in his work. How
Athens? What sort of a place was Corinth? long?
With whom did St. Paul stay? why? Who
joined him? What was the effect of his DANGER AND DELIVERANCE.- V. 12 ministry among the Jews ? Mention the -17. During that eighteen months,
names of some of the principal converts. a second letter was sent to the Thes
what class were the rest? What threatened
to arrest his work? How did this affair salonians; the persecuting Jews con- terminate ?
J. ROCHE, PRINTER, 25, HOXTON-SQUARE, LONDON.
EXERCISES ON SCRIPTURE LESSONS.
MORNING LESSONS. AUGUST 9. :--DAVID IN DANGER.—1 Samuel xix. 4–18. INTRODUCTION. — Recall last Lesson. for his bolster.—“We incline to think Ver. 1–3 belong to it. Thus this Lesson
that the pillow was of goats' skin, begins with Jonathan's pleading. We with the hair outside, and that such a have here a fuller account of David's danger, and so many proofs that his
pillow was then regarded as having a confidence in Jehovah was not misplaced.
sanative property in some diseases ;
whence to see such a pillow in a bed SAUL's Oath.–V. 4—7. Jonathan's would strengthen the illusion that a remonstrance is as modest as it is faith- sick man lay there.”—Kitto. Doubtful and skilful. He points out the sin less the room was carefully darkened, of the King's intention, dwells upon so that the messengers sent to arrest David's innocence, and shows how David were really deceived. But Saul serviceable he has been to Saul. was not so easily satisfied. He comJonathan might have said more in mands, Bring him up to me in the bed, David's praise than he did, but that that I may slay him.-Eastern beds are would only have provoked Saul's little more than a single mattress and jealousy; he mentions the one exploit a covering. No
convenient at which the King himself had rejoiced. method of carrying a sick man could Moved by his son's arguments, Saul be devised than to bear him on his takes a solemn oath that he will not bed. Give similar instances from the attempt David's life. Then David re- Gospels. The cheat is discovered, turns to court again from his hiding- but David has gained time for flight. place, ver. 2.
Saul's reproach of Michal indicates MICHAL'S STRATAGEM.--V. 8--18. that she had pretended to be in league The oath was not kept long; There with him. The lie in her reply is” was war again,-again David won a obvious. The sacred writer simply victory. The evil spirit—of jealousy, records what did actually take place ; passion, hatred
comes upon Saul he does not justify Michal's conduct. again. David plays upon his harp as Though ver. 19-24 are not in the before, but the King's malignity is not Lesson, the teacher may explain that to be charmed away. In a fit of frensy David fled to Samuel, that three times: he hurls his javelin at the harper, Saul despatched soldiers to apprehend David adroitly moves aside; "the him, at last came himself. Each time weapon has been thrown with such David was miraculously preserved. force that it pierces the wall behind Upon the prophesying, consult ch. x. him, whereupon David hastens home. 10-13. Thus it was made evident Not this time to the old home in that the persecutors of David were Bethlehem. He is married now, and fighting against God. “Naked” means has a house of his own. His wife is without the upper garment. Similarly Saul's daughter, Michal. Against his we use the phrase "undress.” will, the King has been compelled to fulfil the promise made when Goliath REFLECTIONS.—-1. Heed good advice, – challenged the host of Israel un- even when it proceeds from those who answered, ch. xvii. 25. Saul's revengeful are younger than and inferior to yourtemper did not exhaust itself in the selves. attempt to kill his son-in-law. It 2. When it is in your power to give was night when David reached home. good advice, do it modestly, kindly, Guards are posted at his door that he humbly ; but faithfully also. may not escape; the King has deter- 3. See in Saul the evil effects of mined he shall die in the morning. Jealousy and passion. “ Anger is a Michal's guile defeats her father's short madness,” even in children; in force. David is let down from a the playground, the school-room, at window secretly.
Then bis wife home. Saul lost all control of himself. dresses up an
ge to represent a sick 4. Read 1 John iii. 15.-Illustrate man sleeping. A pillow of goats' hair from the Lesson.
VOL. IX. NEW SERIES.-August, 1874.
5. It is impossible to keep good resolutions, the solemnest vows, without the help of the Holy Spirit.
6. The protection God always affords to His servants.
QUESTIONS. How came Jonathan to be pleading with Saul for David's life? Sketch
his argument. How did Saul answer? Did he keep his oath? Why not? How did his passion show itself? What did David do? Whither did he go? Whom had he married ? Was he safe at home? why not? How did he escape ? Describe Michal's device. How far did it succeed ? What was her object? Whither did David flee? (N. B., Each of the Reflections should be turned into a question.]
AUGUST 16. -DAVID AND JONATHAN.—1 Samuel xx. 1, 2; 24–42. THE AGREEMENT.–V. 1, 2. From against David, then commands him to Naioth in Ramah, whither he had gone bring his friend and rival into the to consult Samuel, David returns to enraged monarch's presence immethe neighbourhood of the court, to see diately, avowing openly he shall surely Jonathan. He asks in what he has die. Again Jonathan ventures to reoffended the King ; his question is a monstrate, when the father actually strong protestation of innocence. He attempts his son's life in the same speaks of his danger, Saul is seeking manner as he had before endeavoured to his life. Jonathan answers, God forbid kill David. No wonder that Jonathan --that David's life should be taken : left the table in fierce anger ; yet he was promises to warn his friend of any more grieved than angry, grieved for plots against his life. Jonathan seems himself, for his father, for his friend. to intimate that his father was not He could no longer doubt the justice really bent upon David's destruction. of David's fears and suspicions. His rage against him had burst forth DAVID AND JONATHAN PART. - V. only when the evil spirit possessed 35—42. The pre-arranged sign was him. The son cannot believe the father as follows: Jonathan should come into would act thus when sober and rational. the field where David was concealed, A test is arranged, and a method of and shoot three arrows at a mark. A secretly communicating the result to lad would be sent to recover them. If David devised. Our next paragraph Jonathan called to the boy that he had shows the scheme in operation.
run too far, David would know Saul THE TESTAND THE RESULT.–V.24—34. was favourably disposed towards him: Every new moon the King gave a feast, if Jonathan told the boy he had not which lasted two or three days. To it run far enough, David would know all the principal officers of his court he must flee for his life. No one, not were bidden. Of course, the King's in the secret, would guess that the son-in-law could not be absent without King's son had any other object than exciting remark. The first day passed to try his skill in archery. The signal quietly. Saul noticed David's absence, is given : David understands that his but thought some ceremonial unclean
worst apprehensions are realised. The ness kept him away. The second day boy is sent back with the artillery,-of the feast came, but no David ! the bow and arrows. Jonathan and What could be the reason ? ver. 28, 29 David are alone. Very humbly does give Jonathan's answer. David had David approach Jonathan, ver. 41; not gone to Bethlehem; he was waiting was not the one a prince and the other in the appointed hiding-place. The an outlaw? But distinctions of rank Bible simply narrates Jonathan's un- are soon forgotten, as they kiss each truth, it does not justify it, any more other, and weep upon each other's than it justified Michal's. Saul per- neck. David exceeded,-his emotion ceives in a moment that the reply was became uncontrollable. Eastern people a mere excuse; the true cause of David's are loudin their demonstration of grief. absence is his fear of himself. Saul sees, The friends part, after ratifying too, that his son is in league with the covenant of eternal alliance between man he hates. He reviles him in the themselves and their descendants; see foulest language, Thou son, etc.—Saul ver. 12–17. did not mean to speak ill of Ahinoam herself, but simply to annoy and grieve REFLECTIONS.—1. About anger.-It Jonathan. For as long, etc.-So he manifested itself in abusive words, in tries to excite his son's personal feeling wicked and violent deeds. See how
3. About courtesy. Though they were friends, David treated Jonathan as a subject should treat a prince. Always be respectful to your superiors.
foolish it makes a man: first, Saul professes a desire that Jonathan should succeed to his crown; the next moment he tries to kill him! Never give way to bad temper ; never use railing words, not even in reply to those who have cast them at you, 1 Peter iii. 9. How did Jesus behave when He was reviled ? Mark xv. 32; Matt. xxvii. 39; 1 Peter ii. 23.
2. About friendship.-See Morning Lesson for July 26th, 1874. Notice again Jonathan's constancy, helpfulness, unselfishness. Mark, too, his resignation to God's will. He did not mur. murat being deprived of the kingdom.
QUESTIONS.—Where did David go when he left Naioth? Whom did he see? What passed between the friends? How was Saul's feeling toward David to be tested? What happened at the feast? How did Saul try to inflame Jonathan against David ? What command did he give? How did Jonathan answer ? What followed ? How did Jonathan feel ? What was the sign between him and David ? How was it given ? Explain “ artillery." What occurred when the friends were alone ? Explain “ David exceeded.” What covenant did they make? Whither did each of them go ?
-DAVID'S TRUST IN PROVIDENCE.-Psalm xxxiv.
For repetition, verses 8, 9. INTRODUCTION. The title of this They who pray have joy: they are Psalm says that it was written by David
lightened, they cannot be downcast. “when he changed his behaviour before
They who pray have protection, ver. 7; Abimelech, (Margin, Achish;) who drove
the complete supply of all their wants, him away, and he departed.” The cir
ver. 10. cumstances referred to did not happen
Where strength does not till some time after David's flight from
avail, prayer is powerful. The young Saul. But we may fairly take it as
lions,—the strongest and fiercest beasts expressing his feelings after the occur
of the forest, want; but God's people rences of the last Lesson. In tone and
You may not have everything thought it is very similar to parts of Ps. you wish ; are you sure it is a good ix. and xi., see Morning Lessons, July thing? good for you? O taste and see, 19th and August 2nd. It manifests the etc.,-try Him for yourselves, know same gratitude to, and strong confidence
the truth by experience. There can in God. Ver. 1–3 contain a call to
be no doubt about the issue of the praise; ver. 4–10 a record of personal
trial. experience; ver. 11-22 consist of in
III. INSTRUCTION FOR THE TEACHstruction spoken by David as an inspired teacher.
ABLE.–V. 11-22. This paragraph is
addressed to children, those who are I. A CALL TO PRAISE. – V. 1-3. See
willing to be taught.
Mark (1.) on Ps. ix. 1, etc. Notice the invitation David's rules for a happy life, ver. 13, to others to join in David's thanks- 14. Guard the lips. Watch the congiving. Our love for each other should duct; depart from evil, etc., in everyteach us to joy in their joy, and be thing, great and little. Never swerve grateful for their mercies.
from this rule, whatever the apparent II. A RECORD OF EXPERIENCE.--V. advantage. Set your heart on peace, 4-10. The Psalmist tells how God with God, with men, see Philip. iv. 6, has answered his prayer as an evidence 7; 1 Thess. V. 23. (2.) The reason of God's goodness, to encourage all why the observance of these rules must who may hear to trust in Him likewise. bring happiness, ver. 15. This poor man is, of course, David etc.,—see on Ps. xi. 4. God has bound himself. Blessings received from God together sin and suffering, holiness should not be concealed. The Lord and happiness. (3.) The characters heard David's prayer, and delivered God loves, (ver. 17, 18,) the righteous, him completely, from all his fears, out them that are of a broken heart,..such as of all his troubles. So God will hear be of a contrite spirit.-Penitence and and help us. Have any of you an humility
are pleasing in His sight, Ps. experience like David's ? Can you not li. 17; Isai. lvii. 15; lxvi. 2. (4.) remember one instance in which you The afflictions and deliverances of the have prayed and God has answered ? righteous, ver. 19, 20. “The afflictions
TO THE TEACHER.–To this Lesson further Reflections are unnecessary, would merely repeat what has been said before. The questions are arranged with a view to affording the teacher an opportunity of impressing the truths taught upon the scholars, and of personal appeal to them.
of the righteous” are“many;"it cannot be otherwise; the world he lives in is hostile to him, Satan ever tries to harm him; chastisement from his Lord is necessary to drive him from his sins, to test his graces, to teach him dependence upon God. But complete deliverance from all is certain. Yea, while he is in the midst of them, God is watching and caring for him ; the strokes of the rod will pain and bruise his flesh, but no bones shall be broken-no serious harm shall be done him. So of temptation. The fact that we suffer any temptation is positive proof that we are able to resist it. Thus there is no excuse for sin. Illustrate: children are apt to think they cannot help giving way to passion, idleness, disobedience, etc., 1 Cor. x. 13. (5.) The contrasted doom of the righteous and of the wicked, ver. 21, 22. Desolate,---rather, condemned. Compare John iii. 18, with Rom. viii. 1. Mark how God's guardianship extends to the soul of His servants ! He relieves temporal distresses; He redeems the soul, rescues it from all danger. What do we now understand by redemption ?”
QUESTIONS.-When was this Psalm written ? What are its great divisions ? Was David content to praise God alone? What is our duty as to common praise? What was the ground of David's thankfulness and trust? Why did he not keep his experience to himself ? Have you any experience of God's help? Has He heard your prayer ? Do you take your troubles to Him? What benefits do praying people enjoy? What is the best way of proving that the Lord is good ? ever tried it? If not, why not? Give David's rules for a happy life. Explain them. Why will the keeping of these rules ensure happiness? What characters does God save! With whom will He dwell ? Does He dwell within
Have you felt that your heart has been broken before Him? Are the righteous exempt from afflictions? why not?
What promise does God make them ? Explain," He keepeth all his bones,” etc. What is said in this Psalm about the destiny of the wicked ? of the righteous ? What and whom does God redeem? Why are His servants free from condemnation? What is the condemnation of those who refuse to serve Him ?
AUGUST 30.--—DAVID IN THE CAVE OF ADULLAM.—1 Samuel xxi. 10-15;
xxii. 1, 2; 1 Chronicles xii. 8—18. INTRODUCTION. — Sketch the history The land of Israel was unsafe for him, between David's parting from Jonathan he would seek refuge among the and his appearance at the court of Philistines. Was David right? why Achish. He fled to Nob, where the not? The Philistines were his country's high-priest dwelt, obtained from him
foes, had shown themselves the enemies five loaves of the shew-bread, which, in ordinary cases, only the priests might
of Jehovah, too. His flight to Achish eat; and the sword of Goliath, which
manifested some unbelief, some deshad been in Ahimelech's keeping. This
pondency. Mark, the Bible does not trophy of his first public victory would conceal David's faults : it tells the whole geem to him a pledge of future triumph.
truth about him. How seldom you see
in uninspired biographies much mention David FEIGNS MADNESS.-1 Sam. of the subject's faults! Hence learn xxi. 10-15. Try to realise David's the perfect truthfulness of the Word of position and feelings. The King was God. We may be sure it does not seeking his life, resolutely and vin- exaggerate a man's goodness. David dictively. His dearest friend, the was what it says he was. His mistakes King's own son, was exposed to similar prove that he was really human, like danger for his sake. All that even
you and me.
It is possible for us to Jonathan could do for him was to attain his excellencies. He had a sinful weep upon his neck, and bid him “go nature to contend against. Now David in peace. What course should he is at the court of Achish. He thought take? Where should he hide ? He they would welcome so renowned a had no doubt that the God in Whom warrior, with the intention of securing he trusted was able to deliver him, his services against their enemies. would deliver him eventually But They reason, however, thus: Here is what could he do for the present ? David, the foremost soldier of Israel,