Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

now,

this yoke, a kind and beneficent pro- destroying themselves in body and But the kind of liberty vidence has exempted you, reader; soul for ever. evince your gratitude by devoting which they do not possess, we can your prayers and endeavours to the describe. Such is their debased and deliverance of those who are still its enslaved condition that they cannot victims. There is also the yoke of a promise not to yield to certain temptaminute and laboured ceremonial in tions. They can give no pledge when religion. And-worse than either they arise in the morning that they there is the yoke of sin; of moral will abstain from such and such a sin subjection to the tyranny of evil. through the day. They are so acThis is a yoke by which all are more customed to wear the chain, and to or less oppressed; and under which fall down before the tyrant, that if he all, who do not obtain deliverance crosses their path, they instantly yield The infidel, themselves up to his power. There will groan for ever. the sceptic, the irreligious, may make is a conscience within them, intended their boast that they have emancipated to act in the name and by the authority themselves from every restraint, and of God; but they are afraid to listen have achieved their freedom. And to its softest whisper lest it should their specious falsehoods may allure disturb them with upbraidings. There the inexperienced young to emulate is a divine revelation sent to them their example. "But," saith an apostle, from God, intended to reclaim and "while they promise them liberty, they bless them; but they fear to approach themselves are the slaves of corruption; and inspect it lest it should tell them for of whom a man is overcome, of the truth, and truth is their aversion. the same is he brought into bondage." They fear to think of the great and And are they not overcome? They glorious Being who formed them, and may not at present be conscious of by whom they are sustained; and if a their bondage: but the victim about thought of him finds its way into to be offered in sacrifice is not less a their minds, they hastily banish it victim because he is crowned with a thence. Death, and judgment, and garland, and led in a chain of flowers eternity, lie directly in their pathto the altar on which he is about to bleed. They may not be conscious of their chains; but that is only because they offer no resistance to the tyrant that leads them; because they are travelling the road to perdition promptly and of their own accord.

And is it for such to boast of liberty? The species of liberty which they do enjoy it is not for us to describe, for much of it is of a nature which does not admit of description. On this point, we will only add an apostolic injunction,-flee also youthful lusts, and all who indulge in them. Their touch is contamination; their breath, pollution; and their boasted liberty, the liberty of the suicide, the soul suicide, the dreadful liberty of

immediately before their eyes-but they are afraid to look at them lest they should flash terror in their faces, and they shrink from them as from foes.

And is this their vaunted liberty? Yes, my young friends, while they boast of freedom, they wear a most appalling yoke; and their bondage threatens to be eternal. "Chains are the portion of revolted man, Stripes, and a dungeon; and his body

[blocks in formation]

But there is a yoke which it is good light. When you look on the parental for a man to bear-that it is good for power, you behold the image of the him to bear it in youth will probably divine." be shown in a subsequent paper. The yoke especially intended by the prophet is the religious discipline of early and sanctified affliction. It would not perhaps be easy to convince some of you who are at present in the flush and bloom of early manhood that this is a yoke to be commended. And yet thousands even at your age have found it so, and have blessed the wise but invisible hand that imposed it on them. It sobered down their And why is it denominated a yoke? sanguine expectations-corrected their Surely, not because it is "grievous views of the world—imparted a useful and heavy to be borne." " For," saith knowledge of themselves-chastened Jesus, "my yoke is easy;" it is so and improved their tempers-and, easy that had not he himself given to above all, was the means of inducing it the name of a yoke, his disciples them to say, "I will arise, and go would never have thought of doing unto my Father." so-so easy that lisping infancy and infirm old age can alike wear it; for it is lined with love, and the hand that imposes it sustains and makes it light-so easy that were we never disposed to sin we should feel it to be a yoke-so easy that the Christian pronounces it to be perfect freedom, and the blest above delight to wear it. The only sense in which the religion of the gospel can be regarded as a yoke, is the same as that in which the

And what wise son will not think with gratitude of the yoke of parental authority? There is reason to fear that, from a variety of causes, parental authority was never more relaxed or disregarded than in the present day. My young friends, I need not remind you, that a child cannot cast off his filial obligations, nor manifest impatience at the salutary restraints of parental authority, without incurring the certain displeasure of Him who laws of the land are felt to be a yoke instituted the family compact. You by the dishonest and abandoned—it know who it is concerning whom the lays a restraint on our depravity—it evangelist records that in his youth will not allow us to harm ourselves, he was subject to his parents. You to inflict an eternal injury on our know who it is that hath not merely nature for the sake of a present mocommanded us to honour our parents, mentary gratification-it brings us but hath sent that precept to every under the law of love, and bestows on youth linked with a golden promise. us the grace which enables us cordially You remember how He himself not to delight in it. This is liberty:only assumes the title of Father, but "A liberty, which persecution, fraud, glories in it. "What great respect Oppression, prisons, have no power to bind;

·

Which whoso tastes can be enslaved no

more.

must be due from us to that character, which the Supreme Nature has chosen to be the representative of his own! The authority of a father can be seen in no fairer view than by this reflected

'Tis liberty of heart derived from heaven, Bought with His blood, who gave it to mankind,

And sealed with the same token."

But the yoke of yokes is the law of the gospel. How beautifully did the Saviour refer to it when he said, "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." This yoke is threefold,-consisting of truths to be believed, precepts to be obeyed, and a profession to be made.

THE VAUDOIS VALLEYS.

Go, if thou lov'st the soil to tread

Where man has bravely striven;
And life, like incense, hath been shed,
An offering unto heaven!

For o'er the snows and round the pines
Hath swept a noble flood,-
The nurture of the peasant's vines
Hath been the martyr's blood.

A spirit stronger than the sword,
And loftier than despair,-

Through all the heroic region pour'd,―
Breathes in the generous air.

A memory clings to every steep

Of long enduring faith;

diffusion of that Gospel which proclaims glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, and good will towards men. Upon young men I have long looked with intense interest, because they have souls that are to exist throughout eternity, and because upon the energies of youth, coupled with the experience of age, hangs, so far as human instrumentality is concerned, the destinies of all our diversified schemes for benefiting the present and future generations. To whom with anxiety do we look to take the place of the present standard-bearers of the church of God, and of our literary, scientific, and religious institutions, as they drop in succession, but to our young men?

To whom with expectation do we look for improvements in the art of doing good, but To feel otherwise than deeply interested in young men, I must cease to claim the name of a Christian, a patriot, a philanthropist.

And the sounding streams glad record keep, to our young men?
Of courage unto death.

Ask of the peasant where his sires

For truth and freedom bled?-
Ask, where were lit the torturing fires?
Where lay the holy dead?

And he will tell thee, all around,-
On font, and turf, and stone;
Far as the chamois' foot can bound,
Their ashes have been sown.

Go, when the sabbath bell is heard
Up through the wilds to float;
When the dark old woods and caves
stirr'd

To gladness, by the note;

When forth, along their thousand rills,
The mountain people come,
Join thou their worship on those hills
Of glorious martyrdom!

And while the song of praise ascends,
And while the torrent's voice
Like the swell of many an organ blends,

are

When I cast my eyes around upon the thousands, and tens of thousands of young men in London, who at this moment are devoting their powers, not to their own honour, to the good of mankind, and the glory of their Creator, but prostituting them to purposes immeasurably beneath the high and holy ends for which they were conferred;-I say, when I reflect on the anguish of spirit which some of these young men feel when conscience is accusing them-the sleepless nights they spend from bodily or mental disease (would that before God they were all troubled in conscience)-can I with any pretension to piety suffer them to go on in their downward course, and finally perish, without an effort to save them from present and endless misery? Can I contemplate the host of young men of virtuous character, coming up to this vast metropolis, unacquainted with the whirlpool of iniquity in its centre, which in its mighty vortex has entombed thousands of once strong young men ;-I say, can I think of their danger without lifting the loud and the long cry, by every thing that they value, as to personal or social blessedness, as to present or future peace and joy, to flee from every appearance of evil, and not even for a moment to give heed to the wily tempter, who says, "Hath God said, thou shalt not eat of it?" and adds with his fiendish subtilty, MR. EDITOR, - DESIGNED as Young" Ye shall not surely die, but shall be as Men's Societies are to bless the world, and Gods, knowing good and evil?" Ah, young to unite the young men of piety of all lands man, whoever thou art, who hast been caught in love and Christian effort, I rejoice ex-in his snares, or art at this moment under ceedingly in seeing in London, the metro- temptation to do evil, arise, flee for thy life. polis of Britain, and of the world, a society Behold the Lamb of God slain to remove the so comprehensive in its designs, and so emi- sins of thy heart, and thy life; lean on the nently fitted, under God, in its spirit, and by arm of Omnipotence and cry, My Father, its machinery, to accelerate the universal be thou the guide of my youth."

Then let thy soul rejoice!

Rejoice, that human hearts, through scorn,
Through grief, through death, made strong,
Before the rocks and heavens have borne
Witness of God so long.

CORRESPONDENCE.

66

But shall

But there is a yoke which it is good light. When you look on the parental for a man to bear-that it is good for power, you behold the image of the him to bear it in youth will probably divine.” be shown in a subsequent paper. But the yoke of yokes is the law The yoke especially intended by the of the gospel. How beautifully did prophet is the religious discipline of the Saviour refer to it when he said, early and sanctified affliction. It "Take my yoke upon you, and learn would not perhaps be easy to convince of me; for I am meek and lowly in some of you who are at present in the heart, and ye shall find rest unto your flush and bloom of early manhood souls. For my yoke is easy, and my that this is a yoke to be commended. burden is light." This yoke is threeAnd yet thousands even at your age fold,—consisting of truths to be behave found it so, and have blessed the lieved, precepts to be obeyed, and a wise but invisible hand that imposed profession to be made. it on them. It sobered down their And why is it denominated a yoke? sanguine expectations-corrected their Surely, not because it is "grievous views of the world—imparted a useful and heavy to be borne." "For," saith knowledge of themselves-chastened Jesus, "my yoke is easy;" it is so and improved their tempers-and, easy that had not he himself given to above all, was the means of inducing it the name of a yoke, his disciples them to say, "I will arise, and go would never have thought of doing unto my Father.” so-so easy that lisping infancy and And what wise son will not think infirm old age can alike wear it; for with gratitude of the yoke of parental it is lined with love, and the hand authority? There is reason to fear that imposes it sustains and makes it that, from a variety of causes, parental light-so easy that were we never authority was never more relaxed or disposed to sin we should feel it to be disregarded than in the present day. a yoke-so easy that the Christian My young friends, I need not remind pronounces it to be perfect freedom, you, that a child cannot cast off his and the blest above delight to wear it. filial obligations, nor manifest im- The only sense in which the religion patience at the salutary restraints of of the gospel can be regarded as a parental authority, without incurring yoke, is the same as that in which the the certain displeasure of Him who laws of the land are felt to be a yoke instituted the family compact. You by the dishonest and abandoned—it know who it is concerning whom the lays a restraint on our depravity-it evangelist records that in his youth will not allow us to harm ourselves, he was subject to his parents. You to inflict an eternal injury on our know who it is that hath not merely nature for the sake of a present mocommanded us to honour our parents, mentary gratification-it brings us but hath sent that precept to every under the law of love, and bestows on youth linked with a golden promise. us the grace which enables us cordially You remember how He himself not to delight in it. This is liberty::only assumes the title of Father, but "A liberty, which persecution, fraud, glories in it. "What great respect must be due from us to that character, which the Supreme Nature has chosen to be the representative of his own! The authority of a father can be seen in no fairer view than by this reflected

Oppression, prisons, have no power to bind;

Which whoso tastes can be enslaved no

more.

'Tis liberty of heart derived from heaven, Bought with His blood, who gave it to mankind,

And sealed with the same token."

THE VAUDOIS VALLEYS.

Go, if thou lov'st the soil to tread

Where man has bravely striven; And life, like incense, hath been shed, An offering unto heaven!

For o'er the snows and round the pines
Hath swept a noble flood,-
The nurture of the peasant's vines
Hath been the martyr's blood.

A spirit stronger than the sword,
And loftier than despair,-
Through all the heroic region pour'd,-
Breathes in the generous air.

A memory clings to every steep
Of long enduring faith;

And the sounding streams glad record keep, to our young men?
Of courage unto death.

Ask of the peasant where his sires
For truth and freedom bled?-
Ask, where were lit the torturing fires?
Where lay the holy dead?

And he will tell thee, all around,-
On font, and turf, and stone;
Far as the chamois' foot can bound,
Their ashes have been sown.

And while the song of praise ascends,
And while the torrent's voice
Like the swell of many an organ blends,
Then let thy soul rejoice!

FRE

diffusion of that Gospel which proclaims glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, and good will towards men. Upon young men I have long looked with intense interest, because they have souls that are to exist throughout eternity, and because upon the energies of youth, coupled with the experience of age, hangs, so far as human instrumentality is concerned, the destinies of all our diversified schemes for benefiting the present and future generations. To whom with anxiety do we look to take the place of the present standard-bearers of the church of God, and of our literary, scientific, and religious institutions, as they drop in succession, but to our young men?

To whom with expectation do we look for improvements in the art of doing good, but To feel otherwise than deeply interested in young men, I must cease to claim the name of a Christian, a patriot, a philanthropist.

Go, when the sabbath bell is heard

Up through the wilds to float;

When the dark old woods and caves are science is accusing them-the sleepless

stirr'd

To gladness, by the note;

When forth, along their thousand rills,
The mountain people come,
Join thou their worship on those hills
Of glorious martyrdom!

nights they spend from bodily or mental dis-
ease (would that before God they were all
troubled in conscience)-can I with any pre-
tension to piety suffer them to go on in their
downward course, and finally perish, without
an effort to save them from present and end-
less misery? Can I contemplate the host of
young men of virtuous character, coming up
to this vast metropolis, unacquainted with the
whirlpool of iniquity in its centre, which in
its mighty vortex has entombed thousands of
once strong young men ;-I say, can I think
of their danger without lifting the loud and
the long cry, by every thing that they value,
as to personal or social blessedness, as to pre-
sent or future peace and joy, to flee from
every appearance of evil, and not even for a
moment to give heed to the wily tempter,
who says, "Hath God said, thou shalt not
eat of it?" and adds with his fiendish subtilty,
"Ye shall not surely die, but shall be as
ads, knowing good and evil?" Ah, young
hoever rt, who hast been caught
t this moment under
se, flee for thy life.
in to remove the
; lean on the
My Father,
But shall

Rejoice, that human hearts, through scorn,
Through grief, through death, made strong,

Before the rocks and heavens have borne
Witness of God so long.

When I cast my eyes around upon the thousands, and tens of thousands of young men in London, who at this moment are devoting their powers, not to their own honour, to the good of mankind, and the glory of their Creator, but prostituting them to purposes immeasurably beneath the high and holy ends for which they were conferred;-I say, when I reflect on the anguish of spirit which some of these young men feel when con

[graphic]

MR. EDITOR, -DESIGNED as Young Men's Societies are to bless the world, and to unite the young men of piety of all land in love and Christian effort, I rejoice ceedingly in seeing in London, the me polis of Britain, and of the world, a soci so comprehensive in its designs, and so en nently fitted, under God, in its spirit, and its machinery, to ace

universa

« AnteriorContinua »