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objects--riches, honours, and distinctions. The commandment, I apprehend, would be fully satisfied in the receiving of an equal degree of attention, and sincere devotedness to its heavenly precepts and requirements, to that which the worldly man bestows on the concerns of this perishing life.
“And what is the case as regards the latter ? How many ‘rise up early, and late take rest, and eat the bread of carefulness; '--toiling and labouring from sunrise to sunset, and thence onward to midnight; and all this for the poor decaying body, so soon to lie down in the dust of death. We do not find the lawyer, or the commercial man, compromising his temporal interests, by giving to them a reluctant and languid attention during a couple of hours of the morning, and then diverting himself for the rest of the day. On the contrary, he strains every energy of mind, and body, for twelve hours of that period, and frequently for a much longer time, in order to acquire that wealth or those titles which, at the best, he can but retain for a few fleeting years. What ought we then to do as the heirs of immortality ?
“Well has it been said, my dear sir, and a sad and awful truth it is, that the children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light;' who, with an immortal prize before them, manifest an indifference of zeal which is perfectly marvellous, and sometimes no zeal at all, towards the attainment of that precious object; an indifference which is never felt by him who is pursuing but the shadows of time.
“ As a minister of the Gospel,” said Mr. Davies, “ I only demand, in the cause of my Saviour, as regards the Sabbath, the same devotion to his service, throughout the one sacred day, as is paid to mammon during the six days of the week. And now, I will tell you of what I consider that devotion to consist.
“I would have the Lord's Day commence with reading the Scriptures and family prayer, a duty, indeed, with which every day should begin and terminate. I should then expect the master and mistress of the family, accompanied by their children, and as many of their domestics as could be spared from the household, to attend the house of God twice during the day; and that by walking, instead of driving in their carriayes, according to the commandment; except in cases of sickness, bodily infirmity, or other unavoidable, conscientious necessity.
“ On retiring from church, I should enjoin upon them the duty of opening their Bibles, and studying the chapter from whence the text of the sermon has been taken; the better to enable them to remember, and, by meditation thereon, to profit by the instruction which has been given.
“I would have no worldly visits, whether on foot, in a carriage, or on horse-back, paid or received on that holy day. I would have no dinner parties under any circumstances whatever, or other distractions of mind, whether to yourselves or your servants.
Still less, should I permit, after the evil example of the Roman Catholics, any amusements of the slightest description on the Lord's day. For they, alas, consider, in their fearful perversion of Scripture, that after having attended mass they have fulfilled all their obligations ; and
may dance, or play at cards, or go to the theatre; and thus gratify every sense, but common sense, and common virtue, during the rest of the day; the whole of which the Lord has commanded to be kept 'holy.' Are not such desecrations of the Sabbath 'abominations in the sight of God ?' But 'God shall bring every such work into judgment.'
"I should, also, prohibit all light reading of every kind, either in the shape of novels, or newspapers, or any other works which would call off the attention from those religious contemplations and exercises of the heart, which alone become the day, and the Christian for whom it was made.
“ I am somewhat fearful of wearying you,” remarked the reverend gentleman, “but as I am replying to your own appeal to my opinion on the subject, I am anxious to give it as fully as the present occasion will permit.
" What, then, I would ask, becomes of the question of an eternal Sabbath in the world to come, if an occasional Sabbath returning but once in the course of seven days, and that at the most for three score years and ten,' is felt to be a weariness to the spirit ? Even, if admitted within the gates of the heavenly paradise, under such circumstances of divided, lukewarm hearts, and unsympathizing minds, could we possibly expect to find happiness there? If the service of Jehovah on earth be irksome to us, though recurring but once in the week, what must an everlasting service of praise and adoration in heaven be ?
“ This momentous question forces upon us the absolute necessity, if we would be happy hereafter, of unremittingly preparing for it now; knowing, that there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave, whither thou goest. Let us listen, therefore, with obedient hearts to the words of heavenly wisdom, which speaketh thus emphaticallyWhatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.'* “ What would be said of that person,” continued the pastor, who, intending to enter the profession of the law, or physic, or divinity, or indeed to pursue any of the multiform avocations of commerce, should neglect to prepare himself by diligent study, and the attainment of the requisite knowledge, for a favourable admission to the privileges of the order, that he might afterwards enjoy the advantages derivable from it ?
“ Could such a person possibly expect, or, if expecting, receive the smallest benefit from such an insane course ? Would he, in truth, receive anything but rejection, and derision, and the utter failure of his senseless hopes ?
. Eccles. ix. 10.
“ But if such a preparation be needful to obtain the empty distinctions, and the sordid wealth of this moment of time, a wealth that is no sooner acquired than it is lost,—like the water in the perforated vessels of the daughters of Danaus, running out as fast as it was poured in, for death is a ruthless and rapid dissipater of the golden vision ;-if, I repeat, such be essential for time, and its passing follies, what must it be for eternity, and its everlasting glories ?
“Is the kingdom of Christ to be won with a less anxious care than that which is undergone in order to enter the temple of human fame? Will the Almighty Saviour be content with an inferior homage to that which is paid to the 'golden image,' which, since the days of the tyrant of Babylon, has been set up in the heart, and worshipped—and that without the excuse of an arbitrary order from the court, as in the days of Nebuchadnezzar ?
" But to come round again,” said Mr. Davies, “to my principal argument, which is of irresistible force. We shall never be admitted to the joys of heaven unless we have prepared for them on earth; unless we have exerted our best energies for the attainment of them, through faith in the meritorious righteousness, and the redeeming grace of the blessed Saviour, who hath said
“ ' He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live :
And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.'
“ To this act of saving faith must be added another, as the only real sign and proof of it—that without holiness no man shall see the Lord.'
“But if it were possible to be so admitted, as I have already observed, without the preparation of heart which the Gospel requires, we should find that even heaven itself was no place
* John xi. 25, 26.
of rest, and peace, and spiritual rejoicing. We should feel no communion with the pure beings who inhabit its celestial mansions; no sympathy of mind with the spirits of just men made perfect;' but darkness would fill our hearts—even darkness that would be felt-as it filled the habitations of the Egyptians of old, while light was in the dwellings of the children of Israel."
Mr. Stately, who for some time had felt that all the subtleties of his special pleading could not counteract the conclusive reasoning of his two opponents; and who had prudently listened, without offering any interruption, hoping that some circumstance might arise to turn the discourse, and, consequently, prevent the necessity of a reply, now found, on a pause taking place, that he must say something.
“ It would be in vain," he said, addressing the two gentlemen, “to deny you the praise of great strength of reasoning which you have brought to bear on the subjects under discussion, as well as of warmth of zeal in evoking the very spirit of Scripture-not content with its simple letter.
“ The difference between us, as I have before observed, lies not so much in the doctrine as in the extent to which you
“You urge the precepts of the Divine law to the utmost rigour of observance, while I receive them with a qualification. At the same time I cannot forget that you, Mr. Davies, argue professionally; that it is your duty, as one of the good sons of the church, to uphold her articles of faith and practice, without reservation or abatememt, as the lawyer maintains his brief.” “At all events," exclaimed Mr. Gracelove,“
you cannot say that I argue professionally, and I give my most decided support to all that my reverend friend has advanced.
"To instance, in the various items that have been alluded