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REMARKS BY MR. CECIL, COMMUNICATED TO THE EDITOR BY SOME FRIENDS.
A HIDING-PLACE implies secrecy. He who can ment poured forth. He has a quick FEELING. And say unto God, Thou art my hiding place, may go he has a spiritual EAR: My sheep hear my
voice. abroad about his affairs, and may pass through a He lives in a world of his own: he is tried by thousand dangers, and yet at the same time, have spiritual conflicts, and supported by spiritual comsuch a hiding place, in the favor and protection of forts. If the things of God do not afford him conGod, that, when he seems to be exposed on every solation, he droops, and nothing in this world can side, still he is secured and hidden from every evil. lift up his head: he will say to every other object,
Miserable comforters are ye all. He is pursuing a
spiritual end, and while others boast and are puffed A GREAT man, however high his office and ta- up with their great attainments, he is humbled ir. lents, is dependent on little things. Jonah was ex- the dust, and gives all glory to God. ceeding glad of his gourd. However splendid and towering, man is crushed beneath the moth, if God does not uphold him: so that while we are ad. miring the great man as he is called, and however
THERE are critical circumstances, under which he may be disposed to adınire himself and to speak
a man who is in general on his guard, is called to great swelling words of vanity, facts will show redouble his Christian vigilance. If he is about that he is a poor, dependent creature, who cannot will take care to secure himself by every possible
to encounter imminent danger, for instance, he live a moment without God. If the Holy Spirit opens his eyes, he will perceive that he cannot
A house may be well guarded and sestand alone; but can only support himself and cured, but, if there is any fear and expectation of climb, like the ivy, by clasping one stronger than thieves, every place will be doubly barred and himself.
watched. Good care may be taken, in the general habits of a family, to guard against fire; but
if it be known that a spark has fallen among any Dreams are common to sleeping. No man be. combustibles, every possible search is made to disgins to slumber in religion, but he falls into some
cover it and to prevent its ravages. Thus should golden dream. It is a device of Satan to seduce every servant of Christ redouble his guard in crimen into a drowsy state, and then to beguile them tical circumstances. He should remember, that, with some dream. When the duties of religion
while awful providences seem to be threatening become irksome, then he presents some novelty us, and while we are surrounded with dangers on which allures and deceives us : whereas, had we every side, and while the enemy of our souls is been in life and vigor, we should have detected going about as a roaring lion seeking whom he the deceit.
may devour, it ill becomes us to trifle. Let us stir up ourselves, and attend to our Master's admoni
tion, Let your loins be girded about, and your lights THERE are no greater objects of pity in the burning, and ye yourselves like unto men that wait world, than men who are admired by all around for their Lord. for their nice discernment and fine taste in every thing of a worldly nature, but have no taste for the riches that endure for ever-no love for God IF St. Paul had not been an entire character, or his word-no love for Christ or their souls. In he would not have spoken so ingeniously of himsuch a state, however admired or respected, they self as he does in the 7th to the Romans. He cannot see the kingdom of God.
would have acted as many others have done : he would have put the best aspect on things. He
would not have opened the chambers of imagery; A SPIRITUAL man is a character that rises far and have showed, while all the church was ad. above all worldly wisdom and science. He is de- miring him, what was passing within. Here were scribed by our Lord as born of the Spirit. Spirit- real simplicity and humility-nothing of that ual senses are given to him. He has a spiritual Pharisee which he once was. The Pharisee is TASTE that rejects whatever is injurious, and glad become a Publican: the reality is coming forly receives whatever is salutary to the spiritual ward; and he seems to say, “Is any man groanlife: he desires the sincere milk of the word, that ing under a body of sin and death?-on searching he may grow thereby. He has a spiritual sight: his heart, does he find that therein dwelleth no he looks not at the things which are seen, but at the good thing ?- This is my case also ; and if I have hings which are not seen. He SMELLS a sweet any thing wherein to glory, it is in Christ and not savor in the things of God His name is as oint- in myself.
CHARITY should teach us to exercise hope and creature-supports, they had not been so broken! love toward all men—hope toward those who are Still they are crying, O Absalom, my son, my son! without, and love toward those who are within, Why is it that we are shocked to see the world the walls of the city of God. Of those without, falling to pieces around us, when we shall leave we are apt to despair too soon, and to say, There it ourselves to-morrow—perhaps to-day? We foris no hope; when we should labor to allure them get that it is the design of God to dash every into the church of God, and to impress them with thing to pieces. It is by these trials that we bea sense of its glory and its privileges. Toward gin to learn we have been walking by sense rather those within the walls, we sometimes fail in than by faith—and looking at our children and the exercise of love: we are too much influenced our possessions as though we were never to lose in our feelings toward them by a difference of them. education, taste, or disposition ; while the great question ought to be, “ Are they really fellowcitizens with the saints and of the household of It is by Faith that we are relieved under the God?”—and, if so, whatever their defects may difficulties of SENSE. Sense revolts, when it be, we ought to honor and love them as the tem- views our great High-Priest on the cross-Faith ples of the Holy Ghost.
glories in this object! Sense talks like the Jews : He sared others : himself he cannot save : if he be
now the king of Israel, let him come down from WHEN Christians are delivered from trouble, the cross, and we will believe him. Faith lays hold they are apt soon to forget it: and to lose sight on him as the Saviour of the world, and cries, of the holy resolutions formed while under affic- Lord! remember me when thou comesi into thy tion: the strong impressions soon decay. Where- kingdom! Sense envies the prosperous worldling, as if we were enabled to glory in tribulations—if and calls him happy-Faith goes into the sanctuour conscience were made tender—if more reality ary, to see what his end will be. When the were put into our prayers—we should take heed waves run high, Sense clamors-Faith says, how we give way to an evil heart of unbelief : "Speak but the word, and the wind and waves we should remember, too, how our troubles were shall obey thee." When we feel our earthly brought on us, and the benefits which we received house of this tabernacle taking down, Sense sinks while they continued: we should watch that we --but Faith says, We know, that, if our earthly might not estimate them falsely: and at all times, house of this tabernacle be dissolved, we have a we should bear it in our mind, that it is not suffer- building of God, a house not made with hands, ing which hurts us, but sin.
eternal in the heavens.
be in the way.
Some men will follow Christ on certain condi. Wisdom prepares for the worst : but folly tions—if he will not lead them through rough leaves the worst for that day when it comes. roads if he will not enjoin them any painful tasks -if the sun and wind do not annoy them—if he will remit a part of his plan and order. But the Abraham teaches us the right way of convers. true Christian, who has the spirit of Jesus, willing with God:-And Abraham fell on his face, and say, as Ruth said to Naomi, “ Whither thou goest, God talked with him! When we plead with him I will go !” whatever difficulties and dangers may our faces should be in the dust: we shall not then
speak lightly of him, nor complain ; nor will there be any more boasting. We shall abase ourselves
and exalt God! It is our happiness, as Christians, that, howcver we may change our place, we shall never change our object. Whatever we lose, we shall THE Christian's secret intercourse with God not lose that which we esteem better than life. will make itself manifest to the world. We may God has made to us this gracious promise I will not see the husbandman cast the seed into the dwell in them, and walk in them. And though we ground, yet when the corn grows and ripens we may endure much affliction, and pass through know that it was sown. The mere professor, who many deep waters, yet this is our honor and com- may be found every where but in his secret chamfort, THE LORD IS WITH US! and then-what is ber, may think that with care he shall pass for a difficulty ?-what is tribulation ?-what is death? good Christian : but he mistakes, for the spirit -Death to a Christian is but an entrance into will discover itself, of what sort it is. He, who the city of God! it is but joining a more blessed would walk safely and honorably, must walk company, and singing in a more exalted strain, closely with God in secret. than he can do in this world.
A VARIETY of circumstances render the sinThe way of every man is declarative of the ner's first approaches to Christ difficult
. They END of that man.
who find an Easy access, will find an easy departure when troubles arise.
How difficult it is to show those who are in the house of mourning, that God is teaching them, The most likely method we can take to hasten that, if they had not leaned so much on their the removal of what we love, is, to value it too
much-to think on it with endless anxiety—to talks of a speedy recovery! A death will come LIVE on its favor with solicitude. It shall soon on the spirit, which will be perceived and felt by either become a thorn in our side, or be taken all around: yet when the most affectionate friends away
of such a man attempt to expostulate, they often find liim not only insensible, but obstinate and
stout-hearted. He who, like Samson, the cham. Be ye not unequally yoked. If a believer mar- pion of Israel, lays his head in the lap of temptarics an unbeliever, the miseries which ensue are tion, will rarely rise again as he lay down : he endiess. Were they determined, in kindness, to may say, I will go out, as at other times before, and grant all they could to each other; yet they live shake myself : but he wists not that the Lord is deas in two separate worlds. There is a great guli parted from him !- Strangers have deroured his between them, which cannot be passed without strength, and he knowelh it not ! the grace of God; on which, while all should hope and pray for it, none should presume. They cannot taste the same pleasures, nor share the
The whole life of Christ was one continued ex. same sorrows, nor pursue the same objects, nor pression of the same desire.—“Let me lay aside walk in the same path. What hope, then, can my glory-let me expire on the cross—so that thy there be of comfort ? Every Christian finds the kingdom may come!" And the blood of every corruptions of his own heart, the snares of the martyr, who ever suffered in the cause of God, world, and the devices of Satan, together with in- cried, “ Let thy kingdom come !" numerable secret anxieties, quite enough to struggle with in his journey to heaven, without adding another to his difficulties.
Growth in grace manifests itself by a simplicity-that is, a greater naturalness of character.
There will be inore usefulness, and less noise; In studying the word of God, digest it under more tenderness of conscience, and less scruputhese two heads ; either as removing obstructions, losity: there will be more peace, more humility : which keep God and thee asunder; or as supply- when the full corn is in the ear, it bends down ing some uniting power to bring God and thee to because it is full. gether.
The history of all the great characters of the PERHAPS it is a greater energy of Divine Power, Bible is summed up in this one sentence:-they which keeps the Christian from day to day, from acquainted themselves with God, and accuiesced year to year-praying, hoping, running, believing in his will in all things. -against all hinderances—which maintains him as a LIVING martyr-than that which bears him up for an hour in sacrificing himself at the stake. for an increase of patience, experience, hope, and
God's way of answering the Christian's prayer
love--usually is to put him into the furnace of By the course of his providence God will assert joy when ye fall into divers temptations. People of
tribulation. St. James therefore says, Count il all the liberty of his council.
the world count il all joy when they are in ease and affluence; but a Christian is taught to count
it all joy when he is tried as gold in the fire. Let me ask, every day, what reference it has to the day of judgment; and cultivate a disposition iu be reminded of that day.
In Christ we see the most perfect exhibition of every grace, to which we, as his followers, are
called. Let there be but in us that poverty of INDULGE not a gloomy contempt of any thing spirit—that disposition to bear with provocations, which is in itself good: only let it keep its place. and to forgive injuries—that obedience to God and
acquiescence in his will—that perseverance in
doing good—that love which overcometh all diffiGod has called us to meet his best gift to man culties—that meekness, humility, patience, com-his only-begotten Son—not in a splendid court, passion, and gentleness which were found in but in a manger!--in the wilderness !-in Geth-Christ; and if any man should be so ignorant and semane !-before the high-priest, when they spat debased as to imagine that this is not TRUE DIGin his face and buffeted him, and smote him :-at NITY OF CHARACTER, let it be remembered, that the cross !—and at the sepulchre ! Thus it is that this was the mind which was also in Christ Jesus. he corrects the pride and ambition of the human heart !
LOOKING back is more than we can sustain
without going back ! THERE is in sin, not only an infinite mischief done to the man, but it is accompanied by an infatuation that surpasses all description. When WHEN the multitudes followed our Lord on a the heart declines from God, and loses communion particular occasion, although he wished for retire. with Christ, the man resembles one in a consump-ment, and had gone purposely to seek it, yet he sion, who is on the brink of the grave and yet gave up his closign and aitended to them. Mark
the condescension and tenderness of such conduct, cellent, which produces such experience and wisin opposition to a sour, monastic. morose temper. dom. We are too fond of our own will. We want to be doing what we fancy mighty things; but the great point is, to do small things, when called to We cannot build too confidently on the merits them, in a right spirit.
of Christ, as our only hope ; nor can we think 100 much of the mind that was in Christ, as our great
example. THE world will allow of a vehemence approach. ing to ecstasy, on almost any occasion but that, which, above all others, will justify it.
A Christian does not glory in tribulation, as he does in the cross of Christ. The cross of
Christ is the object in which he glories : but hu A CHRISTIAN will find his parenthesis for pray- glories in tribulation as an appointed means and er, even through his busiest hours.
INSTRUMENT in the hand of God, of accomplish
ing his own pleasure and promoting our real good. We treat sensible and present things as realities, and future and eternal things as fables :
Never was there a man of decp piety, who has whereas the reverse should be our habit.
not been brought into extremities who has not
been put into the fire-who has not been taught An Enthusiast will court trouble, and that for to say, Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him! ITSELF : but a Christian, while he does not COURT it, yet rejoices in it: not for its own sake, but be. cause he knows that tribulation worketh fai ience, steady :-He that believeth shall not make haste.
A CHRISTIAN's steps are not only safe, but and patience experience, and experience liope-a When DANGER approaches, he sliall not be thrown hope that maketh not ashamed. While patience is into confusion from his aların, so as to be ready to the fruit of his conflicts and trials, he gains experience by them: he acquires the knowledge say, "Whither shall I run?" but, finding himself
on safe ground, he shall be quiet. Being built which a traveller obtains in performing a long journey: he is in possession of a bundle of choice he shall not make haste in his expectations : ho
on the sure foundation and established in Christ, Inaxims and observations, gathered with much shall not make haste with respect to the promises, pains: he is taught by them to know his own heart: he is brought acquainted with the faithful as though they were long in their accomplishment, ness and mercy of God, in holding him up in the knowing that all the promises of God are Yea, and, deep waters, and accompanying him through the baste in running to broken cisterns; as Asa did.
in Christ, Amen! In AFFLICTION, he shall not make fire of afliction. And this experience produces when in his disease, he sought not to the Lord, bul hope-a hope that he is savingly united to Christ to the physicians : he shall not be alarmed, or dri-a hope that he is in the church of God--a hope of the glory of God a hope that maketh sut ven about, as one who has not a strong hold to
enter; but shall say, None of these things more u• hamed, keeping us steady at anchor through
me ! neither count I my life' dear unto myself, so every storm, and when every other support fails.
that I might finish my course with joy! With re
spect to his CHARACTER, the Christian shall not There are but to states in the world which make liaste: if a cloud come over his reputation,
and men will suspect his integrity without grounds, may be pronounced happy—either that of the man who rejoices in the light of God's countenance, he will commit bimself to God, and wait his opor that of him who inourns after it.
portunity, and not make rash haste to justify and clear his character
Let tne warm-hearted Christian be careful of receiving a wrong bias in religion. When a ball
When a man can say, “ My God!" if he can is in motion, almost any thing presented to it ob- add no more, that is sufficient: for my God is allliquely will turn it wholly out of its course. Be
wise in appointing, and almighty to uphold and to ware, therefore, of a wrong direction in Chris. deliver. My God is a Father to me in Christ: tianity. Fix your attention ever on such exan. yea, he is a Father who hid his face from Christ ples as St. John and St. Paul, and hear how they for my good. if
, then, I am in darkness, let mo speak: If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ
, remember that God never had a Son that was not let him be Anathema, Maranatha !
sometimes in the dark ; for even Christ, his only begotten Son, cried out, My God! My God! why
hast thou forsaken me? God denies a Christian nothing, but with a design to give him something better.
Few Christians, if any, sufficiently honor Christ,
as governing their concerns. They do not say, God teaches some of his hest lessons in the "Now, while I am praying on earth, my Saviour school of allliction. It is said that St. Paul's is working for me in Heaven. He is saying to one, Epistle to the Ephesians has quite the spirit and Do this I --and to another, • Do that!'--and ali ait of a prison. That school must be truly ex- for my good!” While Jeremiah was, doubtless,
crying to God out of the dungeon, Ebed-melech A CHRISTIAN must stand in a posture to receive was interceding for him with the king, and they every message which God shall send. He must were preparing the means of his deliverance. See be so prepared, as to be like one who is called to Jer. xxxviii.
set off on a sudden journey, and has nothing to do but to set out at a moment's notice : or like a
merchant who has goods to send abroad, and has LET the restless, comfortless state of a back- them all packed up and in readiness, for the first slider, distinguish him from an apostate.
If you have set out in the ways of God, do not How many people go out of their sphere under stumble at present difficulties. Go forward. Look good pretences ! not behind
A PERSON who objects to tell a friend of his SOMETHING must be left as a test of the loyalty faults, because he has faults of his own, acts as a of the heart—in Paradise, the Tree: in Israel, a surgeon would who should refuse to dress another Canaanite : in us, Temptation.
person's wound because he had a dangerous one himself.
RELIGIOUS joy, is a holy, a delicate deposit. It is a pledge of something greater, and must not be When the most insignificant person tells us we thought lightly of: for let it be withdrawn only for are wrong, we ought to listen. Let us believe it a little, and, notwithstanding the experience we possible we may be wrong, when any one supmay have had of it, we shall find no living creature poses we are ; and enter into the true littleness can restore it to us, and we can only, with David, which consists in receiving correction like a child. cry, Restore unto me, O Lord, the joy of thy salration.
No man rejects a minister of God who faithfully
performs his office, till he has rejected God. A CHRISTIAN should beware of that temptation, Why should I wait for the Lord any longer ? He should remember, if it is a time of extremity, that
The plainest declarations of God's favor and is the very reason why he should wait
. If his way nifested in the darkest night of trial. Who could
the strongest encouragements, are generally mais so hedged up that he cannot go forward, he “Now is the time for me to stand still
, in the desert with a stone for his pillow? See
be more destitute than Jacob, when he lay down and wait till God opens my way.”. When my spi- also Acts xxvii. 20—24. 2 Cor. i. 3, 4, 5. rit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path.
The pride of Israel testifieth to his face ; and they Human nature is always putting forth its fears do not return to the Lord their God. This is the and unbelief, in anxious questions concerning to
worst symptom in a sinner-when he is too proud morrow, or some threatening calamity : but Christ to go to God... Whatever be our condition, if says to every Christian, “Let not your heart be there is contrition of spirit under it, there is hope
of that man. troubled, neither let it be afraid : I go to prepare a whatever lengths a man may have gone in sin,
There is no room for despair, to place for you ; and I will protect and guide you if he can smite on his breast
, and say, “O Lord ! throughout the journey thither.”
God with us is the traveller's security. Jacob though my sins testify against me, yet thou art a was destitute : he had a long and dreary journey; sake.”
God of compassion. Do thou it, for thy name's but God said, Behold I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest.
A CHRISTIAN should never attempt to try his
state while under a temptation : he might as well Gop calls not for thousands of rams nor len attempt to examine the face of the moon while thousands of rivers of oil : he calls not his creatures she is under an eclipse. But, when he finds corto live in sackcloth and ashes, nor sets them to rupt nature setting in with a temptation--and who perform long pilgrimages, nor to inflict pains on has not felt this :- let him remember his Great their bodies. No! the rigors of superstition are Physician. This is the glory of the Son of God, from man. The voice of God is, “ Be happy, here that no case, either of the body or of the soul, was and for ever! Fiy that which will make you miser- ever found too hard for bim! Blessed be God, able every where! Come unto me all thai labor, and that we have in him a hiding place-a covert from are heavy lalen, and I will gire you rest.
the storm-a refuge from all our enemies !
The voice of Christ is, Niy Son, give me thy The great care of the man who is content with heart ! and to him, who obeys, he will say, “Go the form of godliness without the power, is, that in peace! go into the grave! go to judgment ! go every thing should be right without ; while the into eternity! go in peace!"
true Christian is most careful that every thing