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pain and disease, if, by remaining, he could afford relief, no matter how short and temporary soever? Would the Almighty's blessing follow such conduct?”
Minna. “ I consider the soul of far greater importance than the poor perishing body; if you should lose it, what is to become of you?"
Henry. “ You would oblige me exceedingly, Minna, by studying the 14th chapter of the Romans; and any of the verses you do not understand, I am certain my father or Charles will be very happy to explain them to you.”
His sister did not answer. Indeed, it was seldom that she ventured an argument with her brother. A complete estrangement seemed now to exist between Charles and Minna, and they never spoke to each other unless by pure accident. The nature of the latter was peculiarly sensitive, and, like all sensitive people, she was proud; therefore, though conscience whispered she had treated him unkindly, she revolted at anything like a confession of error; besides, her self-love was hurt at the manner in which he appeared to resent her conduct. He quietly performed his various duties as usual—read, walked, drew, and played with Alice as before. To herself, his behaviour was polite and respectful, neither cold nor kind; but nothing on his part like a reconciliation was attempted.
Mr. Mornton saw all this, and when he spoke to his daughter on the subject, she replied to him concerning her cousin in a manner similar to the language she had used to himself.
The father ceased to remonstrate. It was in vain to reason; but it was her unchristian habit of judging—ber spiritual pride and self-righteousness, that grieved him most; nevertheless, he gave her credit for good intentions.
A CHURCH-YARD SCENE.
I felt in dreamy mood,
To join its solitude;
But, through the twilight grey,
As loth to go away.
She was array'd in widow's weeds
I could not see her face,
She sought the silent place;
No rude annoy to bring
For grief's a sacred thing. The shadow of the old
church Fell round me like a pall, But the mourner's figure I could see
Upon the church-yard wall;
Except the eye of Him,
The more our eyes are dim.
On one small spot, alas!
grass; Her hand she laid
grassRetired, yet lingering staid, And aye upon the silent grass
Her long thin hand she laid.
Of him who slept beneath,
A love that knew not death;
If earth were warm and soft
His head had lain so oft.
Who thus her home forsook,
Upon his grave to look:-
They fow'd not to be seen,-
O'er which her eyes had been.
And still the grass she gently touch'd,
And bended meekly o'er,
Who took it once before;
The morning time of life,
She felt in heart a wife.
Of some old early vow,
That she sought his grave-place now;
Though not unkindly meant,
grave she look'd,
She shared her whole heart's love!
And as she moved away,
For ever there to stay.
Deep darkness crept around;
The place was holy ground!
I homeward sadly turn'd;
To be so loved and mourn'd!
J. H. JUN.
A BRIEF EXPOSITION OF THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW.
(Continued from page 359.)
CHAPTER XIX. VERSES 16, 17: “ And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is God.” The character of Jesus was so pious, so pure, so moral, so loving, that we, with our present powers, can conceive of nothing to exceed it. Yet it is infinitely exceeded by the character of the infinite Jehovah. Between God and the purest created intelligence, there is a vast disparity of excellence; so that not only men and angels, but the “ Well-beloved” himself, may go on throughout eternity, increasing in wisdom and in virtue, without ever attaining to the excellence of the Highest. This Jesus knew, and refused to have applied to himself the epithet “good,” reminding him who so ascribed it, that there is none perfectly, absolutely good, but ONE, that is, God. If ever any one on earth deserved this title, it was Jesus of Nazareth; yet he does not accept it in that strictest sense of the term in which it belongs only to the Father. Compared with that of the best of ordinary men, the character of the Christ may be well denominated perfect; but, compared with the character of God, it would not be rash to affirm, that He as much excels his Son in all perfections as that Son excels the rest of our frail and sinful race. This reply of Jesus furnishes a strong argument for the exclusive Deity of the Father. If there be none absolutely good but the One God, and if Jesus declares that the title absolutely good, does not belong to him, he declares, in other words, that he is not equal to the One God, that he is not the One God. If two beings be equal, we must be able to say of the one whatever we can say of the other; the same titles and the same qualities must pertain alike to each; if they do not, it is obvious that the beings are unequal. If the title “good,” in its highest sense, belong rightfully to God, and if it do not, in the same sense, belong rightfully to Jesus, it is manifest, even to the lowest capacity, that God and Jesus are unequal, and that God is greater than Jesus.
When he had refused to accept for himself a title which belongs solely to the Supreme, Jesus answers the question of the young man who had inconsiderately applied it, “ If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.” The interrogator demands “ Which?" and is answered, “ Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother; and thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” These the young man had observed; he had made them the directory of his conduct and the guide of his life; so far, his moral character had been unexceptionable. Yet, apparently desirous to bave a full reply to his important question, be inquires, “What lack 1 yet?” While he could look with general approval on his past existence, yet his conscience told him he was deficient in some one particular. Jesus tells him this great deficiency: “ If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come and follow me." Covetousness seems to have been his besetting sin, an inordinate affection for the wealth of this world; he had laid up a great quantity of treasure on earth, and he was scarcely willing to transfer it to heaven. He thinks on his gold, and he thinks on bis soul; the conflict in his heart is a fierce and painful one; but the world and the world's wealth eventually triumph. “ But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.” One can scarcely avoid feeling much regret on reading this account; the young man seems to have put the question in all honesty of heart, “ What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He appears to have maintained an excellent moral character, living in strict obedience to the commandments; even his thoughtless ascription of the untransferable title of God to Jesus, shows that he admired and loved the Master. Knowing these things, we feel interested in his fate, and are vexed and disappointed when avarice triumphs over his better nature.
Jesus takes occasion, from this striking termination of the discourse, to exhibit to his disciples the strong tendency of riches to obstruct their
in procuring everlasting happiness: “Verily, I say unto you, that a rich man shall hardly [or, with difficulty] enter into the kingdom of heaven. There are many reasons why it should be difficult for a very wealthy man to attain to spiritual felicities. The command of money is the command of pleasure; the rich man may therefore consume his probationary existence in a career of enjoyment, in