« ZurückWeiter »
The due regulation of the tongue is « Death and life are in the power thus presented to us as the last and of the tongue, and they that love most difficult attainment in holiness. it shall eat the fruit thereof."
This little member « boasteth In Heb. xiii. 15, we are exhorted great things," and operates on hu- “ to offer to God the fruit of our lips, man affairs with a power corres. giving thanks in his name.” And there ponding to that of the helm in a isa most interesting promise recorded ship. The most sedulous attention, in Mal. iii. 16, 17: “ Then they that therefore, should be paid to the di- feared the Lord spake often one to rections of Scripture for its govern- another; and the Lord hearkened ment; among which are the follow and heard it, and a book of rememing most important injunctions.- brance was written before him, for
“ Let no corrupt communication them that feared the Lord, and that proceed out of your mouth, but that thought upon his name : and they which is good to the use of edifying, shall be mine, saith the Lord of that it may minister grace to the Hosts, in that day that I make up hearers."
my jewels, and I will spare them “ But fornication and all unclean- as a man spareth his own son that ness, let it not once be named serveth him.” among you, as becometh saints ; But, if such be the precepts and neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, examples recorded in holy Scripnor jesting, which are not convenient, ture, relative to “ ordering our conbut rather giving of thanks.” versation aright;" what shall we say “ Let your conversation be al- of the conversation generally pre
grace, seasoned with salt, valent even among professed 'Christhat it may minister grace to the tians? Is it such as Scripture enhearers."
joins ? Is it such as God and an en“ If any man among you seemeth lightened conscience can approve ? to be religious, and bridleth not his And how much do we lose of the tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, most sublime and sacred pleasure, that man's religion is vain.” by our negligence in attending to
We have further the recorded ex- the duty of religious intercourse! amples of eminent persons in Scrip. If the consideration that “the Lord ture, relative
to this part of Chris. reigneth,” should make the earth tian duty. Thus David declared: glad, and the multitude of the isles "I will take heed to my way, that to rejoice; every thing which tends I sin not with my tongue; I will to present to our minds our gracious keep my mouth with a bridle while Heavenly Father, in the various the wicked is before me.” And, dispensations of his providence, knowing his own weakness to keep “ bringing light out of darkness," his resolution, he prays for Divine and “order out of confusion,” makassistance: “ Set a watch, O Lord, ing even the wrath of man to praise before my mouth; keep the door of him, and causing all things to conmy lips."
spire to the accomplishment of his It is recorded as one of the cha- purposes of grace in the establishracteristics of true wisdom, that ment of his kingdom in the hearts of “ the opening of her mouth shall be men, should be considered interestright things :" and the conduct of ing as a theme for the conversation the wise and foolish is very strik- of Christians. ingly contrasted, as follows:
The consideration of the mise“The tongue of the wise useth ries which sin has introduced into knowledge aright, but the mouth our fallen world, the effects of of fools poureth out foolishness." which its inhabitants so awfully
“ Pleasant words are an honey, experience, will habitually chastise comb, sweet to the soul, and health the giddiness of intemperate mirth to the bones.”
in the mind of the Christian, and
induce a hallowed' tenderness of blessed Lord, on all occasions, disfeeling. This feeling, however, is covered his knowledge of human nearly allied to joys of the purest nature, by his unerring, adaptation and most elevating nature; for the of his instructions to its constituChristian, while he mourns over the tion; and thus the command," not moral wretchedness around him, is to set our affections on things on the enabled by faith to anticipate the earth,” is coupled with instructions ultimate issue of all things; and and motives to place them on things can : perceive, amidst the darkest above. And if we would escape scenes, the harbingers of that spi- the frivolity, not to say scandal, ritual renovation which shall ulti- generally prevalent in conversation, mately visit our long degraded we must cultivate a taste for those
Often does he, in the sublimeř joys of a spiritual nature secrecy of his closet, experience a to which we have easy access, and joy which the world can neither for the enjoyment of which we give nor take away: often too, in have so many opportunities. In the' solitude of the scenery of na- proportion as we acquire a relish for ture, his heart is elevated with grate- these shall we disrelish those of an ful emotions to that ever present opposite nature ; and it is only a and presiding Intelligence who gives thoroughly formed spiritual taste birth and movement to all things; that can be an efficient safeguard and in the exercise of filial confi- against their ever recurring tempta: dence he looks up to Him as his tions. reconciled Father and Friend.
Among subjects well adapted But why should pleasures so pure to afford interesting topics of conand delightful be confined to mo- versation may be mentioned, the ments of silent contemplation, when proceedings of those philanthropic God has promised to bless with his and Christian institutions which are presence those who meet together effecting so many important changes in his name? Why should we so in the civil, social, and moral conoften employ the noble powers of dition of our species, changes all speech and intellect, on objects and tending to increase the happiness of events too trivial to be recorded in mankind. Few things are so well an ephemeral page, when we have calculated to inspire, among the subjects of thought and intercourse young especially, honourable feelworthy of a place in the records of ings, and to lead to praiseworthy immortality? Why, in our hours of and Christian conduct, as those relaxation, should we conjoin with eminent examples of almost every the melody of music, thoughts and variety of excellence which the an, expressions opposed to those which nals of missionary labour have exform the theme of the heavenly hibited. Those in whom the perusal worshippers, and which we must of Plutarch's Lives could produce, unlearn before we can join their an unconquerable wish to serve their company? Why should we not country even with their life, might more often, in social intercourse, have been led, with these examples express the feelings of our hearts in of a higher order of excellence to a song
of grateful praise, to Him serve their God with equal zeal, who is the well-spring of our com- though at the hazard of every thing, forts—the bond of our union—the which was endeared to them by foundation of our hopes? Have we earthly associations, no mercies to record; no arguments A spirit of union among Chris- . to animate each other to the con- tians is greatly strengthened by. fict with our spiritual enemies? their engaging in the social exercises
The mind is formed to seek en- of devotion. They thus mutually joyment, and this is not to be found draw nigh to Him of whose spirit in the listlessness of inactivity. Our we have all received," and the con. munications of which we may hope subject for conversation, whether at such hallowed moments more any new plan of benevolence could abundantly to enjoy; communica- be devised, or any additional stimutions through which our Saviour ac- lus given to existing ones. complishes that interesting object of 5th. As there are many interesthis intercessory prayer, even “ that ing analogies between the kingdoms we all may be one,” dwelling and of nature and grace, and many imincreasing in love.
portant lessons to be learned from No Christian can seriously review the daily occurrences of life, it is the seasons spent in convivial inter- of importance to cultivate a habit course, in its general tenor, with- of quickly perceiving, and with faout regret, or can have enjoyed cility communicating, these lessons the blessedness of Christian commu- of heavenly wisdom. nion engrafted upon the delightful 6th. When a taste for religious intercourse of domestic life, without conversation is in a great measure being led to the conviction how to be formed, or the habit to be much superior are the latter enjoy- strengthened, let it be practised in ments to the former; and yet how few the smaller and more select society traces of amendment in this respect of those friends who most relish it, can we discover ? Believing, how- by which means a capacity and inever, that with many there exists a clination to introduce it more genelatent desire for an improved state rally into society will be acquired. of social intercourse among Chris
7th. As fruitfulness in every spetians, I would beg leave to suggest cies of moral excellence; must be the following hints, which appear derived from a vital union with our to my mind calculated to conduce Redeemer, if we would shine in the to its accomplishment. As the ar- beauty of holiness, in the presence rangements of domestic intercourse of our friends, we must frequently depend more immediately upon the retire from the world to hold comheads of families, upon them chiefly munion withGod; and then,descendmust rest the accomplishment of the ing from this holy mount, we may desired reformation, and therefore hope in some degree to retain the to them more particularly are sub- heavenly impression in our intermitted the following suggestions. course with our fellow-creatures. 1st. Habitually, and more espe
8th. For Christian friends uniting cially, previously to the reception in the social circle, to sing a psalm of guests, let prayer be offered to or hymn, would have a tendency God for the presence of his Holy to collect the thoughts to a comSpirit, to kindle in their hearts the mon centre-even that of infinite flame of devotion, and to suggest perfection, the well-spring of eternal and bring to their remembrance, joy; and unitedly to bow before the thoughts calculated to cheer, ele- throne of God previously to sepavate, and purify the mind.
rating, would tend to throw a hal2d. It is desirable to read and lowed sacredness around our joys, treasure up something calculated to and to strengthen all the bonds of afford matter for interesting and im- mutual affection. proving remarks.
Trusting that these remarks have 3d. Some topic might, on parti- been written in the fear of God, cular occasions, be selected for in- and committing them to his blessvestigation or discussion, in the ge- ing, it is the earnest desire of the neral view of which those present writer that those who take a similar might be expected to agree, and view of the subject would conjoin which their united contributions of their exertions and prayers in prothought might clear up and enrich, moting the common object. 4th. It might be made a specific
Y. S. Christ. OBSERV. No. 275.
Tothe EditoroftheChristian Observer. directed. Exercise should not be
taken so as to fatigue the body; I CANNOT but consider it as an when children feel themselves weary, important circumstance, that a man they should rest a little till they of Sir Astley Cooper's eminence recover. When the state of the should have publicly given his opi- weather prevents them from taking nion
on the injurious effects arising exercise in the open air they should from confinement, over-application, play in a large airy chamber, and be and the want of air, exercise, and allowed to dance in the evenings, liberty, in the modern system of taking care that the perspiration female education. The subject is excited should not be checked by so important that the attention of any improper means, as is too often parents, and especially of religious done with thoughtless and giddy parents, cannot be too widely or children ; and by this means they too seriously called to it. Sir Astley will be brought up with constitutions Cooper's remarks are as follow: invigorated, so as to ward off the de " At schools, in general, too little attacks of a disease to which they exercise is taken by the scholars. were predisposed. I do not exag Boys, however, will have it ; but not gerate when I say that within this 80 with the girls: they are frequently last year I have seen five hundred compelled to sit from morning till cases of scrofulous affections: never night engaged in learning music,
a day passes over my head without drawing, geography, French, nay, my seeing a case, and frequently even Italian, and I know not what three or four. This very day I have else, without paying the slightest at- seen more ; and if asked how many tention to the preservation of their boys among them, I should answer, health, and thus impairing constitu- Not one. What is the reason of it? tions which might have been render- Why, boys will take exercise, and ed strong and robust. It is not my wish thus are less liable to the complaint; to discourage the cultivation of the whilst girls are not allowed, and, human mind in any degree, nor even therefore, if predisposed to it, iare to prevent the fairer sex from attain- almost always attached by it. ing those accomplishments which so
« It is a mistake to suppose,
that frequently render it the grace of the air of the coast in the wet and life, and ornament of society ; but I cold seasons is of any advantage to think it the extreme of folly in com- scrofulous children: it is only in pelling children to pass hours over warm and dry weather that any pursuits for which they have no taste, benefit will be obtained. Extreme such as making them learn music cold suppresses the progress of scrowhen they have no ear, while their fulous complaints, but in), moist health is neglected and their con- weather the symptoms retum. In stitutions are ruined by the confine- the latter part of the spring and ment to which they are subjected. autumn the sea shore is desirable; The mischiefs thus arising from the but in cold weather it is not. The false system of education at present bleakness of the air of the sea shore pursued in this country, so frequently is unfavourable to the constitutions come before my notice, that I wish of children tainted with scrofulous what I have said to be generally complaints. Air, exercise, - and known, in order that future misery nourishment, are the three great may be prevented, and the physical points to be kept in view in the
education of our youth be better treatment of scrofulous affections. gaissantri site se! Og yn JA 49111bas in a bola a!
But what, you will say, nothing the sad preponderance of the latter. about medicine ? Gentlemen, you The natural order, within the last may lay it down as an axiom, that half century, has been reversed. there is no specific for the cure Formerly the languid and the droopof scrofula ; and he who says that ing formed the melancholy excep, there is, attempts to gull mankind tion amidst the group of gay and by the assertion of what is not true. animated companions; but now the Medicines occasionally given with exception is found in the girl who is a view to improve the digestive possessed of that health and strength powers, and regulate the secretions, which can enable her without injury are good; but attention to the three to support exertion and fatigue. It points I have just mentioned are of was noticed by Dr. Warren, at the primary importance."
time of his greatest celebrity, that .. Sir Astley Cooper's remarks are “half of the young women he was confined principally to the alarming called to visit were made ill by increase of glandular affections a- accomplishments;" and since this mong girls and young women; but period the evil has been gradually, this dreadful disease is not the only but constantly, increasing. evil which in all probability arises I may be told, and perhaps with from the methods adopted in modern propriety, that many causes coeducation from that rage, I mean, operate to occasion this decline of for accomplishments," by which," strength and vigour among genteel to' adopt the words of Sir Astley females : and each objector may Cooper, “ health is neglected and allege that cause which, having fallen constitutions are ruined;" owing, as under his own observation, has conhe observes, “ to the confinement sequently engaged most of his atten to which girls are subjected.” To tion. Nor would I deny the influia what, it may be asked, are we toence of many such existing causes, ascribe the no less lamentable in- but I would still maintain, that the crease of nervous affections, and manner of bringing up girls, both at the general languor and debility home and at school, gives a tenfold which almost universally prevail effect to them all. So far from fur among young women in genteel life; nishing any power of resistance, it who are too often so unequal to any lays them open, by a debilitated exertion, that the order of nature is constitution, to mischief from every inverted, and, instead of being able other quarter.' to assist their parent, the mother, And for what is this invaluable after all the wear and waste of human blessing of health and strength so strength, is obliged either to nurse, readily sacrificed ? Is it that the or at least to watch with careful powers of the mind may be the more solicitude, to prevent " the winds invigorated ? I would ask in reply, of heaven from visiting too roughly," When do those powers sustain sp the sickly plant which she has reared. great an injury as when brought Whence also does it proceed, that under the influence of a nervous 50 few young married women in the weakly frame? Or is this sacrifice same rank of life are able to nurse made with the intention that the their offspring without injury either reason may be more strengthened, to themselves or their infants. To the judgment more matured, or the prove that these are not mere empty fancy better regulated ? Is it that declarations, let any one divide his the temper-may be more subdued, own circle of acquaintance into two the seeds of inherent corruption refclasses that of healthy, vigorous, pressed, and the kindlier affections and active young women, and those fostered ?: Is it, that by such a who are siekly, nervous, and debili- course of tuition the pupil of the tated, and, I firmly believe, he would sehool-room should be formed not be shocked as well as distressed at only to be a rational, interesting