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my

In a little while—“Glorious hope ! immortality ! eternal life! What an eternity! an eternity of perfect love."

She then, with considerable intervals, gave directions for her funeral. “ You have said, papa, that

you

will have mother removed, and that we shall all three be together in one tomb. I am glad of that. At

my

funeral make no show. Do not have me embalmed. I wish my body to be clothed in linen and white muslin only,

When you put my name upon our tomb, be sure you have this written Thanks be unto God who giveth us the victory, through the Lord Jesus Christ.' I hear the voice, The Master is come and calleth for thee. My whole soul responds, • Even so, come, Lord Jesus.' I am full of glory.”

Although perfectly sensible, she said but very little after this. She appeared to be looking into eternity. Its glorious realities were unfolding to her vision, and feasting her soul with ravishing contemplations. About two hours before she died, she suddenly awoke from a gentle slumber and exclaimed, “ Dear Emily! are you here?” I took her hand. “Give me a farewell kiss, my love? Thank you ;” and then, pressing my hand with all her remaining strength, “ We shall be united again soon, Emily, and then you will never have to separate from me. Love Jesus: it will not be long." A little after she ejaculated,

Victory! victory !” After a few moments—“Heaven is heaven is - the rest was lost.

She remained quiet for about an hour; then gently putting out her hand, she said, “ Farewell,

my
dear
papa.

I am going to glory. Serve Jesus—you will soon be there."

These were the last words she uttered. Her eyelids closed. For a few minutes she breathed softly and slowly—then the solemn stillness of death ! My friend was a disembodied saint in glory! Her spirit had taken its rapturous flight to that blissful rest which she had so long anticipated, and in preparation for which she had kept her soul with all diligence. Again, through gushing tears, I prayed, “Let me die the death of the righteous." The poor father never lifted

up his head again. Her death was a shock from which he nevei recovered. He survived her only eleven months; but he died in the full assurance of peace with God, through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

J. F. SHAW, BOOKSELLER, SOUTHAMPTON ROW, AND

PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON: AND W. INNES, BOOKSELLER, SOUTH HANOVER STREET, EDINBURGA.

London: J. & W. Rider, Printers, 14, Bartholomew Close.

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A FAMILY ON THE ROAD TO RUIN.

THERE was, we are told, Luke xvi. 19, a certain rich man, who was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day. And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, who was laid at his gate, full of sores, and desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table ; moreover that the dogs came and licked his sores. That it came to pass, the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom : that the rich man also died, and was buried; and that in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom; that he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. But that Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things ; but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, there is a great gulf fixed; so that they who would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, who would come from thence. That then he said, I pray thee, therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house : for I have five brethren ; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. But that Abraham said unto him, They have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them. And that he said, Nay, father Abraham : but if one went unto them from the dead, they would repent. But that Abraham said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither would they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

Thus the Great Teacher of the world presents us with the picture of a family, ONE OF WHOM WAS IN HELL, and

Granting that this is not history, but a parable, the things represented are not the less true, solemn, and instructive. His parables are portraits of realities. The object of a picture is to give a true likeness. When it is not accurate, it is either because the artist intends deceiving, or he lacks the necessary skill. But Christ's parabolic pictures correspond with the original. His pencil is dipped in truth, and guided by the hand of infinite ability. In this

FIVE OTHERS ON THE ROAD THITHER.

picture there are three prominent objects :-a poor man rising from poverty and suffering to the wealth and bliss of heaven; a rich man sinking from affluence and pleasure to the deprivation and misery of hell; and a family still living in luxury on earth, but progressing to scenes of endless retribution. To this picture, my reader, let me call your serious attention. Mark well the features of this family.

It was a family distinguished by secular respectability. Their circumstances were far superior to those of their neighbours. They wore purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day.” They were the great people in their neighbourhood. Their influence was widely felt; the populace, perhaps, bowed to them with obsequious homage; yet morally they were descending. This fact shows that the possession of wealth is no proof of the divine approbation. Mankind have ever been prone to think otherwise. They have too frequently concluded that because Providence pours blessings into their lap, that therefore the Great Judge of the earth approves their character. A sad delusion is this. Men are not dealt with here on the ground of their deserts. This is the world of probation ; the future is that of recompense.

How God's rain falls and his sun shines alike

upon

the just and upon the unjust! Virtue here is often in the condition of a Lazarus, and vice in that of a Dives.

This fact shows, moreover, that wealth is no necessary cause of religion. True it affords great facilities for spiritual culture. It pre-eminently commands time, and procures the necessary means for reading, meditation, prayer, and social usefulness. The responsibility of the rich man who is not religious is specially awful. But whilst the rich should learn from this their mighty obligation to devote themselves to God, the poor should cease regarding their poverty as an apology for irreligion. Thank God that whilst wealth is no guarantee for a religious life, poverty is no necessary obstruction. Secular prosperity has too often, indeed, been accompanied by irreligion. From the days of Asaph there have been men who have had more than heart could wish, but who, instead of realizing and acting in agreement with their responsibility, have been corrupt, and spoken wickedly; have set their mouth against the heavens, saying, How doth God know ? and is there knowledge in the Most High? Should this be the condition of my reader, let me beseech him to go, as Asaph did, into the sanctuary, or to the scriptures, which in the sanctuary are read and enforced, and there to ponder their end. God declares that such men are brought into desolation, Psa. lxxiii. Nor let the poor in this

27, RED LION SQUARE, LONDON.

he

world be envious at their prosperity, but aspire to be rich in faith; to possess a moral character, which, while it meetens them to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light, shall survive the proudest distinctions of time, and constitute the essential glory of eternity.

Secondly. This was a family that had been visited by bereavement. Death had stepped within its precincts, and with ruthless hand had snatched one of its dear objects of affection. The “ five brethren " had but lately followed to the grave

the remains of one to whom they were in common allied, in whom they felt a common interest, and for whom they cherished a brother's love. Notwithstanding this awakening dispensation, they are found still on the road to destruction. The fact of death entering this family and leaving it in such a state is suggestive of many serious thoughts. It shows that death cannot be bribed by wealth. No doubt if wealth could have delivered their brother from the grasp of the last enemy would not have died. In history we have read of men of vast possessions when on their dying bed expressing, with awful emphasis, their readiness to part with all their wealth could they but procure the grant of a few minutes for repentance. But there is no discharge in this war. There is an appointed time for man upon the earth, and when that time comes the mightiest sovereign is as powerless as the meanest subject. You may be encompassed with the most flattering promises of security; you may be engaged in the most interesting occupations; the grandest scheme may be on the point of development; and a nation's weal may seem dependent on your continuance; but all such circumstances shall but illustrate more strikingly the resistlessness and the impartiality of the stroke of death. Let not, therefore, the wise man boast of his wisdom ; let not the great man boast of his greatness.

It shows, again, that death does not wait for moral preparation. There was no preparation for death in this family where death entered. The supreme interests of the soul were not recognised in that family; the way of salvation was not sought after in that family; there was no altar to God in that family. Yet death was not deterred by this ; he entered, and wrought his fearful work. Reader, are you unconverted ? Death will not wait on that account. “ Beware, lest he take thee away with a stroke : then a great ransom cannot deliver thee;" lest you be hurried to that tribunal, where, trembling and dismayed, you must encounter the frown of an angry Judge. He now forewarns you. He calls you to turn at his reproof, that he may pour out his spirit upon you, and make known his word

SOCIETY

THE ENGLISH MONTHLY TRACT

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