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liar sensitiveness to physical suffering, and once or twice expressed his dread of what might be before him ; but this dread arose chiefly, I believe, from his not having been able to take in the blessed truth of the Father's and Redeemer's love to himself personally. There was sometimes painfully evident to me an uneasy straining after a greater amount of feeling in himself before he could quite trust the love of Jesus. He would say, but always with a voice trembling with emotion, 'I don't think I love Jesus, rightly, and sometimes I am afraid He does not love me.' The second time he said this was when he had the first intimation, by an attack of violent pain, of the disease taking a new and unusual form, which it retained till the end. I had fondly hoped that his doubts were removed, and it was intensely painful to me to see that dear one racked with bodily anguish, and with the far worse anguish of doubt. With what earnestness I prayed with him and for him, that God would comfort him! I spoke to him, as I had often done before, of the love and patience of Jesus when He was on earth to those who knew and loved Him but very imperfectly, and in particular of His tender and merciful treatment of that poor father who, asking for the cure of his son, could only cry with tears, ' Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief.' Next morning I had the great comfort of finding that the clouds had cleared away, and Daniel told me, with a peaceful smile, that he knew I had been praying for him, for he felt much happier.
“ The comfort, however, did not last. Some weeks afterwards there were the same complaints, and an evident avoidance of the subject of the end to which we all felt be was now hastening. Having gone into the country for a week, I wrote to him, entreating him to ponder well the texts which we had often read together, and to see that, if Jesus had not been loving him all along, he would never have had a single right desire, or any anxious concern on the subject. Nay more, I said, 'If He had not loved
would He have sent you this long illness, which, by your own showing, has drawn your mind towards Himself as it was never drawn before. This letter gave him great comfort ; but yet once more the old feeling came back. And on my return, and hearing from his sister that she thought he still clung to the hope of recovery, I said to him, when we were alone, that I thought he could not remain long with us in so weak a state. He said, 'Perhaps not,' and then, after remaining a few moments in thought, he said with tearful eyes, · But I have no assurance yet that my sins are forgiven.' said that he had all the assurance which I or any one had, the assurance derived from the simple word of Jesus, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins.' I reminded him again of the saying, “Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief.' * Ah !' he said, " that is exactly what I say, that just describes my state.'
What underlay all the perplexity and difficulty of this now earnest but doubting soul was this, that he had spent the days of his health without God; while virtuous and honourable, and not neglectful of the outward observances of religion, he had not given heed to the things which belonged
to his peace, and it seemed to him more than he could believe that God would be his God, and accept his heart and service now that all power of serving Him was past and gone. The good news that God first loved us, that He loves us freely and without merit of our own, while we are yet in our sins, seemed to him too good to be true.
In all this there was a very proper feeling—a sense of his own unworthiness, a sense of his sin in withholding from God his heart while he had health and strength to serve Him. Mark this, my dear young readers, ye who are not Christ's, who do not love Him, though He has loved you and given Himself a ransom for youif ever you are brought to Christ, you will feel it a deep reproach that you did not serve Him in the days of your youth.
To resume the story of this young man's experience, as told by the friend from whom I have already quoted. We now come to the third period of his experience, a long period of undoubting faith in Christ, of the most fervent love to Him, and of unquestioning submission to the Divine will. " After praying together I went home, praying for him and believing that the full blessing could not be far off; but yet I was scarcely prepared for the blessed surprise when, after two days, he told me with tears of joy, 'I have found it; I do not doubt that He loves me, and I do love Him, and am so happy.' From that time, during the six or eight weeks that followed, scarcely, the shadow of a doubt or fear passed over his once troubled spirit. I felt then more deeply than I had ever done before, how entirely the deepest springs of our being are in the hands of our heavenly Father. The experience of the precious sufferer was now one continued source of thankfulness and joy to us all. He had at all times listened to my reading of the Bible with reverent interest. But now I could see a great change. I could see, as I read, by the expression of every feature in his face, that the words were no mere words to him, but life, and power, and joy to his spirit. He literally craved for the words of Jesus as a thirsty man craves for water. The first part of the twelfth chapter of the Epistle to the Hebrews, beginning, “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses,' ver. 1., and ending, 'W erefore lift up the hands which hang down,' ver. 12-14; the second and fourth chapters of the same Epistle, revealing to us the human sympathy of the Redeemerthese, with the first part of the first Epistle of Peter, including, 'Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory,' were his especial favourites. And they were repeated to him daily, with several hymns which were likewise dear to him, such as
Bonar's—'I heard the voice of Jesus say,
Come unto me and rest.'
But that Thy blood was shed for me.'
Till our rest be won.'
Toplady's—' Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.'
'Tis thy Saviour, hear His word.' “On repeating this last, he invariably repeated the last verse, and with a voice trembling with emotion :
Lord, it is my chief complaint,
Oh for grace to love Thee more !'
It is not night if Thou art near-'
Is portioned out for me,' he asked for many times. It was very touching one vy, as I had finished this last hymn, to find him asking for one verse which I had purposely omitted, because I thought it suited only for one in the full enjoyment of life and health :
And if some things I do not ask
In my cup of blessing be,
With grateful love to Thee;
Than to please Thee perfectly.' But I repeated the verse as he wished ; and yet so much was he suffering at the time, that when he put to me the question, 'Do you think we can please God perfectly?' he was unable to listen to my answer. Keble's morning hymn, too, he much enjoyed, and during an interval of ease in the morning dawn, he asked his sister, who was watching by him, to draw aside the curtain, and read to him the two first verses of that beautiful hymn
O timely happy, timely wise,
Our waking and uprising prove;
Restored to life, and pain, and thought.' “The irritability, which had sometimes been distressing both to himself and to others, now entirely disappeared. Nothing but words of thankfulness to Jesus, and of tender love and gratitude to all around him, were heard from his lips. He used to wonder at his own peace.
Many a time he said: "I wonder how it is that I have no doubts. Better men than I have them, but I have none; why is it?' I answered : • Because God hath given you that perfect love which casteth out fear. He has asked for a child-like trust and you have given it.' The only thought that caused him gorrow, was that he had not done good to others during his
time of health. On one occasion his sister saying to him that she knew he was doing them all much good by his patient suffering, he said, with deep earnestness, “ Then I am willing to suffer it all over and over again.' More than once I heard him utter this sentiment—so great was his longing to help some of the dear ones around him on his way to heaven.
“But to me, the most affecting thing witnessed in his chamber, was his prayers offered during the intervals of suffering. After an attack of agonising pain, he would lie back on his pillow, and with closed eyes and folded hands, and forgetful for the time of every presence but that of Jesus, he would speak to the Redeemer, reverently and solemnly, and yet with such tender confidence; appealing to His human sympathies ; pouring out thanksgivings for the bitter cup, which for us He drank to the dregs; invoking blessings on his father and mother, and brothers and sisters; and lastly, in thankfulness for his own trial, saying : “I thank Thee for this affliction. It has been good. Before I was aflicted I went astray, but now I love Thee with all
heart.' It will now be seen why I have entitled this narrative " He first loved me.” So conscious was this young man that in these words was the key to the interpretation to all he suffered, that he gave charge that on his tomb should be engraven: " We love God because he first loved us.”
The love of God to him, while he was without any love to God, arrested him, and by protracted disease and great suffering made him feel the world's emptiness and his own sinfulness, and at last brought him to the enjoyment of perfect peace in Christ. He now saw it all, and gave God thanks. It was my lot to enter his chamber on one occasion when he was sinking into faint, and friends around him were anxiously applying restoratives. The excitement of seeing me seemed to stimulate and revive him. And he poured forth expressions of thankfulness to God and to the dear friend whose tender ministrations had been especially blessed to his soul's good. Looking round, and seeing father, mother, brother, and sister there, he said: “I want them all to come with me.” At last, exhausted, he lay his head on his pillow, and with closed eye, he whispered—“God is love, God is love.” Five minutes before he had been enduring physical agony, the intensity of which, medical authority said, could scarcely be imaginedand yet deep in his heart dwelt the thought : “God is love, God is love." A triumph of faith, this, which should fill all hearts with thankfulness
I resume the narrative which has been put into my
hands. " Daniel never used any remedy for the relief of pain without prayer for a blessing with it. And he would often say: 'If it be not Thy will to relieve me by this, I am still willing to endure—I can do all, Christ strengthening me.' And during the few last weeks of his life, his sufferings, through emaciation and inward disease, were so acute, that he frequently prayed for release, but never failed to add — If it be Thy holy will.' The last time I saw him was only about twelve hours before the end. He had, just before my entrance, rallied from a long and terrible convulsion. He yet looked calm and peaceful, and, as ever, drank in the words of life with eagerness. I repeated to him a few hymns, and passages in Isaiah, which had so often been his solace : 'Fear not, for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God; I will strengthen thee, I will keep thee.' When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee.' "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.' 'I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known; I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them and not forsake them.' When I said—“This is what the Lord has been doing for you. He has made darkness light before you and crooked things straight,' he responded with such a beaming smile, and then, asking his sister to draw up the blind that he might see me perfectly, he gazed at me for a minute with a look that penetrated my soul, and then gazed at the sunlight, exclaiming, · Beautiful, beautiful;' and then, as if he had a vision of the coming glory, he whispered, "God's light.' These were almost the last words I heard from the lips of the precious one.
He bade me a tender farewell, and I shall not see that beautiful smile again till I meet him in our Father's house above, where God shall wipe away all tears
Another violent spasm had to be endured before the end, during which he constantly repeated, . My grace is sufficient for thee.' And then, naming all the dear ones around him, he gently breathed his spirit into the hands of his Redeemer. • Oh! give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy endureth for ever.' • We love Him because He first loved
from all eyes.
THE DYING CHRISTIAN.
As my light groweth dim ?
Is this indeed to die?