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and showed him a way of escape from all his dangers. We, too, have an encouraging vision. We see Christ crucified, set forth in the preaching of the gospel, as the only way to God, and the only way to heaven, and this vision should lead us to vow, as Jacob vowed. Jacob enjoyed intercourse with God. He saw the Lord at the top of the ladder; he heard kind words of promise, and he felt that he was at the gate of heaven. Hence his vow. Think of the grounds of the vow.

It was grounded not on feeling or his own strength, but on the promises he heard from the mouth of the Lord. These secured to him the divine presence, divine protection, divine supplies, and that he would safely reach his father's house. Believing these promises, and taking God at his word, he vowed to be the Lord's. This was the crisis of Jacob's life. This was the turning-point in the history of his soul. And this was the start which he ought to have made long ago, but which he did not make till now, for the better land. Reader, has there been any crisis in thy life, any turning-point in the history of thy soul, any start for a better world ? Why not now? Why not take God at His word? Why not believe in Jesus, to the saving of thy soul ?

Think of the contents of the vow-“The Lord shall be my God.” The portion claimed is “the Lord.” Riches, pleasures, fame, cannot satisfy

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the soul, but the Lord can, and He says, “I am the Lord thy God.” Then there is the claim of this portion. The word “my” is a little word, but it expresses the act of appropriating faith. It is the link that joins us to the Lord. It is the charter we hold for our inheritance in heaven. Further, Jacob engages to worship God. He took the stone on which he lay for a pillow, and set it up, and poured oil on it, and called it Bethel, the house of God, intimating to us his resolution to worship God, and make his house a house of God. And shall we not erect an altar of prayer in our habitation, and lay a morning and evening sacrifice thereon ? Jacob pledged himself to give to God a tenth of all that God should give to him. He seems to have begun the world with nothing, and how often do those get best on, who begin with nothing! He believed that whatever he should acquire, he would get it from God, who maketh poor, and who maketh rich, as He pleases. And he very properly resolved to dedicate to the service of God, the tenth of his whole income. Let us feel as Jacob felt, that all we have is from God, and let us give, as Jacob gave, a suitable proportion of our substance, for the support and extension of the gospel.

Fifth Sabhat—Morning.


I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth."

-3 John 4.

The beloved disciple, in all his writings, uses the language of tenderness and love. In this passage, all Christians are viewed as children ; they should walk in the truth, and if they so walk, it will gladden the hearts of their spiritual fathers.

All Christians are children. They are born of the Spirit, through the instrumentality of the truth. The Corinthians were begotten by Paul, “ through the gospel.” The scattered strangers, to whom Peter addressed his first epistle, were “ born again by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever,” and all Christians are begotten of God by “the word of truth.” Apostles and ministers of Christ are thus honoured to be spiritual fathers. Through their efforts and prayers, the children of God are brought to the knowledge of the truth. A much-esteemed minister of the gospel gave the following advice to one of his hearers, whose father had been an eminent Christian : “Remember these words, “Thou art my God, I will prepare Thee an habitation; my father's God, I will exalt Thee.' We should reckon him a madman who would throw

away a father's estate, but he is much more foolish who throws away a father's God.”

They should walk in truth. The truth of God, revealed in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule of faith, the standard of our duty, our comfort in affliction, and our safe guide to heaven. The truth must not only be believed, but obeyed, for obedience is the only sure test of sonship. Religious conversation is good, but walking in truth is better. Religious profession is good, when it is genuine, but professions speak with a weak voice, while actions speak with a voice like thunder. He who would be a great Christian, must, like Enoch and Noah, walk with God. “Not every one that saith Lord, Lord, but he that doeth the will of my Father, shall enter into the kingdom.” This walk is onward and progressive. The Christian not only makes his light shine before men, but he perseveres till death. He resembles the sun, that incessantly pours forth a flood of light, and yet shines with undiminished splendour. He resembles a river that flows onward, increasing in strength and volume, till it reaches the ocean. “The path of the just is as the shining light, which shineth more and more unto the perfect day."

This gladdens the heart of faithful ministers—“I have no greater joy.” Ministers rejoice when sinuers are converted through their instrument



ality. “What is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing ? are not even ye in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? The successful minister has, in the souls of those saved through his instrumentality, a monument more lasting than brass. He has a gladdening crown, whose radiance will make eternity brighter and happier. What a noble service to be gaged in, plucking brands from the burning, and saving souls from death! Ministers rejoice when their converts hold the truth, and walk in the truth. The steadfastness and perseverance of Christians delight their souls, while coldness and backsliding are an unspeakable grief. Reader, if thou wouldst strengthen the hands, and encourage the heart of thy minister, hold fast, and hold forth the truth, notwithstanding affliction, opposition, and temptation. Ministers rejoice when their converts are useful to others. Every young Christian should labour for Christ, and for the good of others, and, like Aaron and Hur, hold up the hands of his minister. Thereby God will be glorified, souls will be saved, and religion transmitted from heart to heart, from country to country, and from generation to generation, till the world be gladdened by its influence, and till the whole earth be filled with the glory of God.

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