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Observer, Feb. 1, 75.

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Eastern manner of expressing great grief. Joshua's ehief concern—the honour of the Lord's name.

v. 7-9. Get thee up,—don't lie there in useless wailing; arise, discover the sinners, and purify Israel. v. 10-15. Joshua's appeal to God indicates no idea of the cause of defeat ; his faith in God not as strong as might have been. An undertone of reproach in the curt command, “Get thee up," etc. tribe was taken-no doubt by lot. See 1 Sam. x. 20; Prov. xvi. 33; Num. xxvi. 55; Neh. xi. 1. So on by families till “ Achan was taken.· My son."

Grave and earnest appeal. Joshua had no personal anger to the sinner.

Give glory to God.A solemn pledging of the accused to speak the truth ; thus to show that the cause of the disaster was not in God. The sin twofold-coveting and robbery. v. 21. Babylonish garment ;" better“ a robe of Shinar,” such as worn by kings in state. The stolen property belonged to the Lord, as spoil devoted to Him. Achan and his family stoned to death, afterwards burned. v. 24. He could scarcely have carried away and concealed it in his tent without his family taking part in the concealment.

NOTE.—God's help is not to be expected while we continue in known sin-without God's help we fall before enemies whom otherwise we should conquer. No use cry. ing to God when trouble comes on account of sin, unless we look for the sin and set about its removal; fasting and sorrow wont do while the sin is retained-outward wrong springs from inward sin. Had Achan not coveted he would not have stolenSinners cause others, even those they love, to suffer shame, loss, and pain. QUESTIONS.-1. Why did Israel fall before the men of Ai?

_2. Was Achan's sin counted to himself alone ? 3. What was his first wrong? What did inward sin lead to ? 5. When can we not expect God's help? 6. What must we do if we fall into sin ? 7. How does the conduct of bad men or bad children effect those they love ? 8. What became of Achan and his children? 9. What will become of all sinners who do not repent and turn to God?

GOLDEN TEXT.-Ecc. ix. 18. “One sinner destroyeth much good.”

February 14. EBAL AND GERIZIM.—Deut. xxvii. 1-8; Joshua viii. 30-35 Moses sets before Israel in detail the blessings consequent upon keeping the covenant and the curses following disobedience. On taking the land they were required to inscribe the law on a monument of stone ; thus setting forth that they took it by virtue of their covenant with God. It was an everlasting covenant which He could not depart from, unless annulled by Israel breaking it. * On the day,(Deut. xxvii. 2) "at that time,” not confined to the first twenty-four hours. Both monument and altar to be on Mount Ebal. See the exact obedience. Joshua viii. 30-35. It is generally considered that the chronological order is not observed ; that these verses, in point of time, come in at the end of the chapter. Travellers observe that Ebal rises steeply from the valley, and forms a suitable platform from which the announcements could be heard. The blessings were read from Gerizim, the curses from Ebal. The people say Amen.

NOTE.-After Israel's sin comes a renewal of covenant with God. The nations are then in terrible fear. Well they may be for when God's people are faithful to Him no enemy can stand before them. And so still God will bring off victorious those who do His work in His own way. Remember to keep the law of God before you. They inscribed it in stone and plaster. We have it in books. But the proper place is in the mind and in the heart. When there, we shall strive to observe it in all things.

QUESTIONS.—What did Moses command Israel to do on taking the land ? 2. What did they first do on arriving at Ebal ? 3. Have we now to build altars and offer sacrifice? Why not, seeing that the New Testament says, that “without shedding of blood there can be no remission of sin ? name any text of Scripture which speaks of Christ as a sacrifice for us? 5. Where, and on what did the Israelites write the law ? 6. Where is God's will written so that we can learn it? 7. Where must it be written in order to make us obedient? 8. What will be the consequences if we disregard the will of God ?

GOLDEN TEXT.-Psalm cxi. 1. “Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord, and delighteth greatly in His commandments." February 21. CALEB'S INHERITANCE. ---Joshua xiv. 6-15.

The chapters following the last lesson give the main features of the conquest of Canaan covering about-five years. The lesson for to-day relates to one old and faithful man.

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Children of Judah came.0.6. No doubt the kinsmen of Caleb, specially to manifest that they supported his claim : dignity and modesty mark his speech. The reminder of God's promise (Num. xiv. 6-10). My brethren,"—the other spies, died in the wilderness for unfaithfulness. Caleb, strong and favoured because faithful to God. Joshua, the other spy-only these two men of all who left Egypt enter the land. As it was in mine heart,"—the truth as he believed it, without regard to pleasing

Give me this mountain"—the portion promised by God. He had waited in faith forty-five years. And now his lot is possessed by the Anakins (the giant race) and the cities were great and fenced. Why not let the old man have a goodly lot of the land already taken? He wants nothing of the sort, but only what God has appointed. He has faith in God, and with His help will drive them out. Joshua blessed him," and gave his lot. _Still he has to take it from the children of Anak. They had been driven out by Joshua, but had returned. Caleb finally overcame them and occupied Hebron, the place where formerly dwelt Abraham the "friend of God."

NOTE.-How safe and good it is to believe and obey God, even where standing almost alone. Consider the end before making a beginning, then you may come off gloriously in after years when others have died in sin and shame. Learn to accept the lot God marks out for you, and not to settle down in another by deviating from His word. God will fix our habitations and make our path plain if we attend to His precepts and walk by His providence. Young and old can serve God thus, and secure His blessing. In the end a better land than Hebron.

QUESTIONS.—How did Caleb conduct himself when sent to spy out the land? 2. Who among those who went with him were alike faithful ? 3. What became of the other ten ? What did God promise Caleb? 4. How did he get possession of the land promised to him ? 5. Who lived in that part of the land a long time before? 6. What do we learn as to our duty from the facts ? _7. Will God now take care of us, as He did of Caleb, if we are also faithful ? 8. What will He give to His faithful children in the end ?

GOLDEN TEXT.—Psalm xlvii. 4. “He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob, whom he loved." February 28. THE LAND DIVIDED.Joshua xviii. 1-10.

The whole congregation assemble at Shiloh. Canaan was subdued, excepting a few strong places in the mountains. The Tabernacle in Shiloh, central, and so accessible to all the tribes. See Judges xxi. 19. “ Shiloh " signifies Rest. The people came there resting from their journeying and conflict. The Tabernacle, Ark, etc. rested there some 300 years. 1 Samuel i. 24; iv. 4, " Seven tribes." Two tribes and a half had before received their portions on the east of Jordan: Judah, Ephraim and the other half of Manasseh had also been settled. See Josh. xv., xvii. The Seven tribes were Benjamin, Simeon, Zebulun, Issachar, Asher, Naphtali, Dan. How long are ye slack ?" They seem not to have been in a hurry to abandon an unsettled mode of life. But God's time for a change had come. « Coastrefers not to land washed by the sea, but means boundary." The fairness of the arrangement for mapping out the land into seven parts. Each tribe had its portion by lot. The Lord directed the lot. There is no chance with Him. The Lerites, no land; but supported for priestly service. Cities assigned them. See xxi.

NOTE.—Care to place the Tabernacle conveniently for all the people. Learn, therefrom, the importance of duly considering (when about to fix our abode) how facilities for attending to the ordinances of the Saviour will be thereby affecteil. In going out into life consider well your religious privileges. As the place of God's. Tabernacle denoted Rest, so now His present temple, which is His Church, is the place of true rest to those who follow Jesus. As that Tabernacle was to be followed by a more permanent and beautiful structure, so the present Church-rest is to terminate in that higher and never ending rest which remains for the people of God.

QUESTIONS.—Where did the whole congregation assemble? 2. How many tribes had then to receive their inheritance ? 3. What were their names ? 4. What does Shiloh signify ? 5. What was set up at Shiloh? 6. How long did the Tabernacle and Ark remain there? 7. Has God now a Tabernacle or Temple on earth? 8. What is it composed of ? 9. What blessings belong to its living stones ? 10. What remains for the people of God?

GOLDEN TEXT.-Proverbs xvi. 33. “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord.

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Observer, Feb. 1, '75.

A REPLY TO “ WHY BAPTIZE THE LITTLE ONES? ”

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A PAMPALET is to hand, entitled "A reply to the Pamphlet of Mr. David King, of Birmingham, entitled • Why Baptize the Little Ones ?' By the Author of ' A Defence of Infant Baptism, etc.'

Who ever the Author may be his name is not given. is signed A. G., and on the cover, as publisher, we find, “PAISLEY: ALEX. GARDNER.

A page of advertisements tells of several works on Baptism by the same Author, and also of publications on other themes, which seem well spoken of. His handling of our little book indicates reading and ability above the average. His equal on the other side of the question would be a formidable opponent. But in this instance his cause is too bad to admit of successful defence. Our small work, during the last seven years, has had wide circulation both here and across the ocean, and has been highly commended beyond our own circle. But our Author thinks but very little of it, and having replied to Dr. Carson, the Hon. Baptist Noel, and, as he writes, “the Rev. A. Campbell,” he takes his pen to finish us. On the outside he penned his “ kindest compliments.” In the inside he now and then seems to have forgotten kindliness and courtesy. But that is immaterial. We shall not here notice our friend's work at length, because there is little chance of the readers of our pamphlet meeting with his reply, and but small purpose would be answered by setting up his arguments in our type merely to show how easily they can be disposed of.

It will suffice to say, for the present, that he does not claim to find Infant Baptism commanded by the Apostles; nor does he pretend to have found, in the New Testament, even one clear case of the baptism of a babe. He rests everything upon inference, and even then does not undertake to affirm that the doctrine is certainly implied. He says, “It is freely admitted that nothing is proved by merely possible implications, but there is a wide distance between the merely possible and the certainly implied. There are many stages between these two extremes which Mr. King finds it convenient to overlook. A thing may be not merely possible, but probable—very probable—exceedingly probable--and probable in the highest degree." From this point our Author moves on to the end of his journey, walking by probability instead of by faith. Turning to the close of his work we learn what he claims to have accomplished—“The evidence for Infant Baptism, as has

been shown, is what may be characterized as highly probable.” We take our stand on the doctrine of Mr. Knowles, a distinguished Professor, that reasonable probability is the highest evidence to be obtained on most subjects,' and we challenge Mr. King to dispute this doctrine.” Having carefully gone through our Author's production we deny that he has produced reasonable probability, or that lie has reached even to slight probability. We also deny that God ever commanded the observance of an ordinance without making its proper subjects unmistakably known, and we, therefore, insist that the highest probability must be against Infant Baptism. Not that we admit that the question is to be thus determined. We claim that the proper subjects of baptism are positively pointed out by the Lord and His

Apostles.

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Observer, Feb. 1, "75.

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QUERIES. In general we shall insert queries first on our cover, thus giving to any who are able so to do, an opportunity to forward useful answers. In this way

valuable information might be circulated. But care is required to present only queries that are of general interest, and which are not answered in books freely in use. Half the queries we are asked to reply to refer to matters that most Bible readers understand, or that are explained in easily accessible commentaries. Every now and then we are requested to tell something about the father and mother of Melchisedec, to reconcile statements about the death of Judas, or to say in what consists the sin against the Holy Ghost which cannot be forgiven. Let those who send questions first seek information from brethren at hand and from easily obtained volumes of Bible exposition. When these fail, then let them consider whether the inquiry is likely to be of general interest to our readers, and send it or not accordingly. In commenting upon answers which appear, see that the comment, or further answer, be forwarded in good time for the next issue, as we do not think it desirable to renew subjects after they have ceased for a month or so.

Last month we inserted, and invited answers to, three queries from R. Dillon. They cover points of great and general interest, and well considered replies would have been gladly inserted, but nothing has been received. We do not at present feel called to write upon the subject, because already we have filled more than a few pages in so doing. In our volume for 1869 is a series of articles, headed “ Testing of Landmarks,” which cover the questions raised by R. D. Those articles were written to promote investigation; refutation was invited, but it came not. We commend them to him and to all who desire a reply to his queries.

To the questions inserted last month we added one. What is a Baptist Church? No one has favoured us with an answer, and we really do not know. There are recognized Baptist Churches which admit only immersed persons to membership and to fellowship; others of them admit the unimmersed to the Lord's table but refuse them membership; others receive alike to full membership both classes; the officers of Baptist Churches are generally required to be immersed, but some have unimmersed elders; an immersed minister is usually held essential, but some deem it an expedient rather than a necessity. Who, then, will favour us with a definition of a Baptist Church which shall be accepted by the Baptists, according to the facts, and include all the churches so designated ?

ED.

THE GOSPEL BY JOHN. The Fourth Gospel.-A Metrical Rendering, by G. Y. Tickle, was the subject of comment last month. The following extracts from letters indicate the reception it has met with from discerning readers :

From Mr. H. Perkins, Baptist Minister, Bootle.—As yet I have not had time to do more than barely glance at your work. If I may say so, it smells good. I have not yet been able to taste it. This I hope, that it may lead in many minds to a more

Observer, Feb. 1, '75.

intelligent, complete, loving, and confiding grasp of Him to whom the book it trans. lates bears such bold and emphatic testimony. No wonder modern scepticism so fiercely aims to throw discredit on that gospel, and I cannot but think that the multiplication of loving attempts to do it and its Lord honour, by throwing around it the fragrance of poetry, or otherwise, will have the value and effect of testimony in its favour. May you have much token of its acceptance with Christ.

From Mr. č. M. Birrell, late of Pembroke Chapel, Liverpool.-I have still to thank you for kindly sending me a copy of your Metrical Rendering of St. John. The delay in this acknowledgment has given me fuller opportunity of becoming acquainted with your experiment which I think extremely successful. I have often been struck with the rhythm of our common version, as if it could not help koeping time with the music of the original thought, but the work of putting it all in this form seems to have been kept for you, etc., etc. You have my cordial approval and thanks.

From P. G. Scorey, present Minister of Pembroke Chapel, Liverpool.-Dear Sir, -I wish to acknowledge, with best thanks, the present of your Metrical Rendering of the Gospel of John. Since I received it I have been much occupied, and am not so thoroughly acquainted with its contents as I hope in a day or two to be. But I do not like to delay any longer the expression of my pleasure in being possessed of your work, and of my appreciation of the many felicitous phrases and careful and critically accurate renderings with which I already see it abounds. I earnestly hope that your purpose in your labour may be abundantly realised, and that the divine and most spiritual teaching of John's Gospel may, through you, become more familiar and clear and precious to many.

Our readers will do well to put the little work, so justly commended, into the hands of friends—some people who do not read the Bible at all might be lead to read a metrical version, and in so reading be arrested by the truth.

Family Room.

IF HE WOULD ONLY SPEAK !

Amy Barker, now in her fifteenth same at home as abroad, too, and year, had been trying hard to be a only three years older than I am. better Christian; and one day after I should like to see her ever so many trials and discouragements, much. I've only had one talk with she said, despondingly, "I may as her upon these things since I well give up; I don't believe I joined the Church." ever shall be any better. Oh, if Amy was happy to find her Christ were only here, as when cousin at the meeting, and on He lived on earth ; or if He their walk home, after some remark would only speak in an audible of Jenny's relative to the subject voice, to remind me when I do of one of the addresses, Amy had a wrong !" Then there came an good opportunity to speak of herinward whisper—"But you would self, and she said: soon get used to the voice, and go “ It is hard for me to be a on the same as ever !

Christian, Cousin Jenny. There “I wonder if I should," thought are so many hindrances ; so much Amy. “I believe I'll talk with to do at home; so much to vex Cousin Jenny, if I can see her to and annoy me with the children ; night, after the meeting. Now, and when I am trying the hardest she's a lovely Christian, just the to do right, it always seems that

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