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ship: a relationship closer, purer, and more abiding than any earthly one. Spiritual, it is true, but for that very reason all the more real and precious. Believers in Christ are one. Paul and Peter and John were. But Paul and Quartus and the believers at Rome were not the less so. Brought to Christ, we are related to one another. "Ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus." If one father, then one family, and one common brotherhood; a brotherhood having nothing to do with place or position or calling. Grace rises above worldly distinctions. Wot overlooking them, or setting them aside, but rather recognising them, yet is it superior to them. The cross is the meeting place of the rich and the poor, where, amidst differences in temporal circumstances, and variety in spiritual gifts, all are one in Christ Jesus. A universal brotherhood is this, as to all who have, are, or shall yet be, believers in Jesus. Taking our stand at the Cross, we link hands with Paul and Gaius, with Erastus and Quartus, and with believers at Rome and everywhere else, throughout all the successive ages of time.
Let us not be unmindful of this spiritual relationship, but endeavour to cultivate a brotherly feeling towards all who are one with us in Jesus our common Lord. Very diversified are the outward circumstances of our brethren, and not less so their spiritual experiences. Yet, "One is our Master, even Christ, and all we are brethren." Toward* some we may have peculiar feelings, strong attachments, and ardent love. Providential arrangements, or a similarity of religious feeling, may bring us together, and may make ua bosom friends; while others we may know but little of, and not have such strong regard to. But let not these be forgotten or treated coldly, for they too are our brethren; as much beloved and cared for by our God and Saviour as those whom we so tenderly love. Be it ours to embrace in the arms of our affection all who love Jesus, and to. salute them as Quartus did, even though they may be unknown to us in the flesh.
We may gather one more truth:—
3rd. That many may cherish Christian sympathy towards us that we know nothing of.
Possibly Quartus was standing near as Paul was dictating his letter, and might say, as he heard names mentioned, "Are you sending salutations to the believers at Rome F then remember me to them." But doubtless many others thought of and prayed for them. True Christian sympathy is not bounded by geographical limits, or confined within a narrow circle, but goes forth towards all who are the children of God. It lets fall the secret tear and prompts the earnest prayer, not only for known ones, but even for those unknown except by report. Thus, in reading accounts from missionary brethren our hearts feel for them, and we bend the knee on their behalf, so that it may be, that at the very time they are cast down and are concluding that they are alone, many a Quartus may be thinking of them, or may be pleading for them at the throne of the heavenly grace. Not the less true are these remarks as to those whom we do know. Others may be sympathizing with us, and we may be cherishing warmest affections toward them, when on neither side we may be aware of it. Thank God, there are more Quartuses than we sometimes think there are! The love of Christ begets affection towards all who love him, and without leading to noisy professions of friendship, stirs up the heart to pray, and begets suitable and corresponding action.
May we seek to grow in Christian love and sympathy, while with heart and lips we say, "Grace be with all them that We our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity."
DIES IRM, DIES ILEA.
Day of wrath! that awful day-
THE DREAM OF CALEB
"Christiakitt, indeed!" said Mr. Edmonds, as he looked over his books, in the little back parlour behind the shop: "I am disgusted with such hypocrisy!"
There was a dark frown upon the brow of the man of business as he spoke these words, and an irritability in his manner cf taming over the leaves before him, which spoke of some bad debt troubling his mind, and robbing him of his good temper.
"What is the matter?" asked a cheerful little woman by the fire, at whose side • basket of stockings told of a largo family, and a consequent demand for stitchery.
"Matter!" echoed the husband: "do you not know that Welsford owes me four pounds ten and sixpenoe?"
"Well, he will pay, I suppose?"
"Jfot he! The goods were purchased more than a year ago, and I have not had a penny yet!"
"What does he say when you see him?" asked Mrs. Edmonds, who evidently loved to look at the bright side.
"Say? he does not say much to me, I can tell you. I told him not to worry me with his excuses, but to bring his money j and that he need not cross my door-step again until he could do that."
"I am sorry for his wife," said the little s'ocking-mender, presently: "she appears to be a truly pious woman."
"Pious t" retorted her husband; "yes, sad so is he: 'tis that disgusts me. Religion, indeed! and he owes me four pounds ten and sixpenoe. I thought the Bible Mid,' Owe no man anything.' Christianity, forsooth!"
Mr. Caleb Edmonds was a highly respectable grocer in the town of Marlby; in fact, a man of substance, for business had prospered with him. He was industrious and obliging; rising early, working hard; and thus from small beginnings he had risen to the possession of considerable wealth. But although an excellent man of business, Mr. Edmonds was a very ordinary Christian. True, he had begun the race, but he did not press toward the mark. Ala» for "the cares of this world, and the ciwsiWulness of riches"! And, aj it is
characteristic of a low standard of piety to be harsh and censorious in our judgment of our fellow-Christians, so Mr. Edmonds, when he heard of any defect in the character of professors around him, was always the first to exclaim, "Christianity, iadeed!"
Is not this too common with us all? Do we not, even if we give no expression to our thoughts, doubt and hesitate much more than we should doubt and hesitate, regarding the reality of the religion of our "Eeady-to-halts" and "Feeble-minds "? Do we not set up a standard of perfection for our fellows, which is too lofty, in our view, as a standard for ourselves? and are we not too ready to exclaim against the wanderings of others, even while we turn aside into forbidden paths?
Perhaps such thoughts as these had passed through the mind of Mrs. Edmonds as she sat over her work; for when she rose to leave her basket for some more active household duty, she bent over her husband for a moment, and said gently, "Caleb, I do not like to hear you say, 'Christianity, indeed!' as you did just now. Suppose your fellow-Christians were to judge of you as harshly as you of them! You uften say it," she continued, hastily: "you doubted John Watson's religion yesterday because he lent money to your rival, and Thornton'* because he opposes you in business; and you shook yonr head about Miss Milwood's piety bfcauae she argued with you against total abstinence! 'Judge not, that ye be not judged.'"
Long after his wife left him these words rang in Caleb's ears: "Judge not 1"
At last, as he sat in the twilight, between sleeping and waking—for business was very dull, and he could spare half an hour for rest—a vision stole upon him, and he passed, in imagination, rapidly through the scenes which follow.
At first he found himself in the front parlour of a house in a very quiet neighbourhood, and in the presence of three maiden ladies, whose names he knew very well. They had their feet upon the fender, and, their knitting laid aside, were evidently discussing the affairs of their neighbours.
"Such pride!" said the elder lady, whose name was Rayby : " what will come next, I wonder?"
"The most fashionable boarding-school
in R , I assure you," said another—
"Ah!" said Miss Rayby, "and I can remember the time—of course I was very young then, but still I can remember— when Caleb Edmonds swept out his own shop!"
"Dear me! and now he has the upstart impudence to send his girl to such a school as that!" exclaimed Miss Sophia Milwood, the spinster who had not yet spoken. "Oh, the pride of human nature!"
"And lie a professor, too!"
"Professor!" said Miss Rayby; "religion does not teach a man such absurd pride as that!"
Miss Phillip shook her head, and began to lament the increase of false professors.
"Well," thought Caleb, "I believed that in spending some of my cash upon the education of my children I could not go very far wrong j but I find I am misunderstood even here."
The next scene was the drawing-room of the very John Watson of whom Mrs. Edmonds had spoken. A lady was making tea behind a silver urn, and a gentleman, her husband, sat beside her.
"Poor Thornton!" said Mrs. Watson— for it was she—" I trust he will succeed."
"He shall, if, by God's blessing, I can compass it!"
"He is a very deserving young man," continued the lady : "the manner in which he bore the loss of all his property would win esteem, even if he had no other claim."
Mr. Watson did not reply: hia mind had wandered to another branch of the subject. "That Caleb Edmonds," he said at length, "I am surprised at the ill-feeling he displays."
"Yes; he is evidently annoyed at the opening of another shop so near his own; whereas, in the principal street of a town like this, ho should have expected competition. Besides, he has made a little fortune, and has nothing to fear; yet he will not treat George Thornton with ordinary civility."
"I thought he was a religious man," said Mrs. Watson.
"He pretends to be," replied her husband, "but I have not much faith in
a religion which brings forth so little fruit!"
Poor Caleb! his wife's words — the Master's words—still sounded in his ears as they had never done before, meeting with a responsive echo in bis heirt.
Again a change, and Mr. Edmonds found him»elf beside a sickly looking woman, who, leaning on her husband's arm, walked slowly towards the house of prayer. It was impossible to look without interest upon her pale and anxious face, a face which had once been beautiful, and equally impossible to disregard the careful tenderness with which her steps were guided by the strong man at her side. Their conversation, too, was worthy of remark: they were speaking of the consolations of the Gospel.
"Who knows?" exclaimed the invalid, "perhaps there may be words just suiiml to our case this morning; words for the poor!"
"Poor as regards this world onlv, Mary!"
Her eyes brightened as she looked up cheerfully. "Yes, yes ; rich in treasure far more costly than earth's gold. God help us to look up, and to truBt him for the 'meat that perisheth.'"
They walked on for awhile, and then the wife said mournfully, "I sometimes fear that it is pride which makes me shrink from meeting Mr. Edmonds, but I do shrink from it. Oh, if we could but nay him!"
"We shall be able to do so soon, I hope," said WelBford: "it has been a hard struggle, Mary, starvation almost, but I think it is nearly over."
"Ah, it was all for me! I am sure Mr. Edmonds would be patient, if be knew how much you spent in medicines for me, and how little work you have!"
"He is patient, after a fashion; and we have reason to be thankful for that: still he has said some crushing things to me; harsh things, which he may live to repent, things which have made me doubt his Christianity."
"Nay," said Mrs. WeUford gently; « I would not judge him: how many inconsistent things we do!"
"You are riglit. I may not lift my voice: alas, but little likoness to my Iiord is found in me 1"
Again the echoing voice thrilled through the soul of the listener; ngain he heard the word?, " Judge not ;" and as he dwelt upon them the vision slowly faded, and he, Bunyan-like, awoke, "and behold it was a dream!" But the lesson of the dream was not quite lost upon him, for he awoke to a deeper spirit of Christian charily, a nobler self-denial, a holier humility, a nearer likeness to Jesus. He had been taught in that brief twilight musing one of the grand old lessons of the book of God.
The fireside morning worship was just ended, and Charles Welsford was about to go forth to his daily toil, when a gentle knock at the door spoke of a visitor. How great was the surprise of all when Caleb Edmonds entered!
"You are come, sir"
"I am come," said the grocer, interrupting him, "to express my hope that you are not under any concern about the little amount you owe me. Take your time, my good *ir j take your time."
The poor man's eyes were filled with team, as, grasping the outstretched hand, he tried to speak his thanks.
"Afy wife," said Mr. Edmonds, turning towards Mrs. WeUford, "put something into my hand, just as I left, for you, ma'am ;" and forth from his capacious pockets came tea, sugar, biscuits, from the good wife's ample store, till Mary's eyes too 611«d with graterul tears.
"And now," said the visitor kindly, "don't forsake the shop: get your little parcels there, and pay just when it suits you. By 1 he way, if a sovereign would be of any service to you, I have one which will burn a hole in my pocket, as the saying goes, unless I give it to somebody.'' And before they could reply he had laid the coin upon the table and was gone.
"Marv," said Mr. Welsford, "let us thank God for this."
They knelt, and, as he breathed forth his heart's gratitude, his wife wept tears of jor, and even the voices of their little ones murmured the "Amen."
But Mr. Edmonds did not stop at this: it was to him Charles WeUford owed a situation which soon after placed him far above the reach of want; it was to him he owed a host of kindly deeds, which came like sunshine to his inmost soul.
We hasten on. Not alone in this regard was Caleb Edmonds changed; for, two days after his strange dream, he walked into his rival's shop, shook hands, invited him to drink tea at his house, spoke
pleasantly about their "opposition," and even hinted at his own retirement at some future day, when his new friend would have "a better chance"!
And from that time the charity which "suftvreth long, and is kind;" "is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;" "beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things," held an almost undisputed sway over the heart of Caleb Edmonds; and ever was the maxim of the Bible borne in mind, "Judge not, that ye be not judged."
THE BLIND BOY.
It was a blessed summer day:
In pleasant thoughts I wandered on
Just at an aged birch-tree's foo'
The children knew not I was near—
"Dear Mary," said the poor blind boy,
"Yes, Edward, yes," replied the maid,
"The flowers, you say, are very fair,
"Yet I the fragrant flowers can smell,
"So, sister, God to me is kind,
"No, dearest Edward; there all see—