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be no moral life where there is no religion. Both vegetable and animal life are absolutely dependent upon water. The reeds by the flowing river, the algæ in the sea, the snow-plant whose home is among the tiny crystals of the snowflake, the grey lichen on the rock whose brow is 'often beaten by tempest and scorched by the heat of the sun, as well as the clover in the meadow, the violet in the shade, and the oak and cedar in the forest-in fact all-live by water. The influence of this discovery on a heathen mind was strange. Thales, the sage of Miletus, found water in the sea which washed the skirts of Greece giving life to fish, porifers, and corals. He found water on the Parnassus, supplying the rustic poet with the inspiration of his song. Life and beauty followed in the track of water, and death and desolation reigned where water was not found. The Grecian sage was so surprised with this discovery that he came to the conclusion that water was God-was the origin of all things— ápxò.
But apart from the influence of water as solvent of the inorganic food of plants, and the organic nutriment of animals, and as the general conveyer of all building material to the living frame, the discoveries of the last few years have shown that water as an obstacle to terrestrial radiation saves our world daily from universal death. Warm objects cool sooner in dry than in damp air, because the heat rays are reflected back to the object by every drop of floating vapour in the latter. If all the moisture in the atmosphere were precipitated at the moment of sunset, the air, being free from vapour, would allow the heat absorbed by the earth during the day to fly off to space, and, before sunrise, the whole hemisphere would become so cold as to be fatal to every form of life. The sun, which set upon a world of life and beauty, would rise upon one mighty grave.
The idea of the illustration then is this, that in every way, true life of soul depends upon those powers which reach the human heart from the life and death of Jesus.
2. As there can be no physical cleanliness without water, so there can be no moral purity apart from Christ. Notice
II. THE BLESSINGS OF THE GOSPEL IN THEIR CONDITION OF PROFIT. “Whosoever drinketh of the Water.” God's mercy is for all, and for all on condition, and for all on the same condition--personal appropriation, “Drinketh.” Notice
III. THE BLESSINGS OF THE GOSPEL IN THE COMMUNICATION. “ That I shall give him.” Bearing in mind the simile used by our Lord to represent spiritual energies, we naturally inquire-who or what gives us water? remembering that, that which is, to us, the cause of water, is a type of Christ, the cause of spiritual life. We are indebted to the sun for all water-all water fit for use. VOL. XX.
The sun lifts up the water from the sea in the form of vapour, and, by its unequal heat on different sections and divisions of the air, causes the vapour to descend in the form of rain and dew. All our rills and rivulets, lakes and rivers, owe their origin to this. The sun takes the impure compound of the sea, and, having passed it through its own laboratory in high heaven-the air-it gives it pure, and beautiful, and fit for use in the form of rain, &c. Our Lord is such to all the powers of the spirit's life. All its energies come from Him, and He can take all kinds of powers, and by passing them beneath his magic touch, make “all things work together for our good;” make all things help our salvation. Notice
IV. THE BLESSINGS OF THE GOSPEL IN THEIR PRACTICAL INFLUENCE, “ Shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”
The leading idea of the figure is, that the man whose soul is full of sympathies with Christ, becomes a conductor of spiritual influence, and a gererator of such vital energies in some form. As the mountain is to water, so is a heart full of Christian sympathies to spiritual energies. The water, in dew and rain, falls upon the mountain. Its flocks, forests, and other living beings, are refreshed. The land is made more fertile. The heath-flower is painted with greater delicacy. of beauty. The wings of butterflies, and the el.ytra of beetles, shine more brightly in the sunlight; the lambs skip with lighter feet, and. the shepherd gives more spirit to his homely song. But this is not all. The hill absorbs the excess of moisture, the water percolates through the rock to inner caverns; and when the clouds give no rain; when the grass is free of dew; when the heat is great, and the land is thirsty, then that glorious mountain pours forth, through its wounded side, in a stream like flowing silver the clear cool water it has treasured up from days of yore, to satisfy the wants of thirsty comers. Such is every child of God represented by our Lord in the text. He receives, and is blessed; he receives, and blesses others. If a man, whose soul is full of Christian energies—not dogmas, forms, or creeds—but is full of the loving, holy, living sympathies of Jesus, comes to your home or neighbourhood, his refreshing and life-giving power must be felt; for as the water becomes a well in the mountain, and flows out as the life of many, so do Christian energies become a well in the nature of their possessor; and its constant flow tends to the production of that state of repose in God which our Saviour mentions as everlasting life.
Is religion within us such a life-giving energy ?
Evan Lewis, B.A., F.R.G.S., F.E.S.
Seeds of Sermons on the Book of
see in the circle in which he RETRIBUTIONS OF THE LIP AND moves, intelligence, goodness, LIFE.
spring up around as he speaks. “A man shall be satisfied with good
Thirdly: In the conscious apby the fruit of his mouth; and the probation of God. They that recompense of a man's hands shall be
feared the Lord spake often one rendered unto him.”-Prov. xii. 14.
to another: and the Lord hearkI. THE RETRIBUTIONS OF THE ened, and heard it: and a book LIP. “A man shall be satisfied
of remembrance was written for with good by the fruit of his
them,” &c. (Malachi iii. 16, 17.) mouth. The man here must of
II. THE RETRIBUTIONS course be supposed to be a good
THE LIFE, “ And the recomman for he speaks good. Speech, pense of the man's hand shall be to be good must be (1) Sincere. rendered unto him.” The hand It must correspond exactly with here stands for the whole conduct what is in the mind, all other of life. It means that man should speech is hollow and hypocritical. receive the rewards of his works. It must be (2) Truthful. It
And this is inevitable. First: must correspond with the facts
From the law of causation. We are or realities to which it refers.
to-day the result of our conduct Speech may be sincere and yet | yesterday, and the cause of our not truthful; it may correspond conduct to-morrow, and thus ever with what is in the mind, but
must we reap the work of our what is in the mind may not cor hands. Secondly: From the law of respond with the facts. It must
conscience. The past works of our be (3) Benevolent. It must be hands are not lost; memory used for the purpose of usefulness, brings them up to the conscience. not to injure, delude, or pain. And the conscience stings or Now the speech of such a man
smiles according to their characwill satisfy him with “good.” If
ter. Thirdly: From the law of any man offend, not in word, the
righteousness. There is justice in same is a perfect man, and able
the universe ; and justice will also to bridle the whole body.
ever punish the wicked and re(James iii. 13.) How will such
ward the good.
“ Be not de speech satisfy a man? First:
ceived; God is not mocked: whatIn its action upon his own mind.
soever a man soweth, that shall There is a pleasure in the act of
he reap.” speaking a true thing, and there is a higher pleasure in the reflection of having done so.
(No. LXXXIII.) ** Speech is the light, the morning of
THE OPINIATED AND THE DOCILE. the mind; It spreads the beauteous images abroad “The way of a fool is right in his own Which else lie furled and shrouded in eyes : but he that hearkeneth unto the soul."
DRYvEX. counsel is wise.”—Prov. xii. 15. Secondly: In the effect he sees I. THE OPINIATED. He is a “fool," produced upon others. He will and his way is always “right in
his own eyes." He has such a As who should say, I am Sir Oracle, high estimate of himself that he And, when I ope my lips, let no 'dog
bark ! ignores the opinions of others,
I do know of these, adopts his own notions, as the That therefore only are reputed wise infallible criterion and rule. Such For saying nothing." a man, Solomon says, is a “fool.”
SHAKESPEARE. Why? First: Because he deprives himself of the advantages of other men's intelligence. It is the law of Providence that men should learn
(No. LXXXIV.) by the intelligence which others
SPEECH. have reached by observation,
“A fool's wrath is presently known: study, and experience. The past
but a prudent man covereth shame.
He that speaketh truth sheweth forth should be regarded as the school
righteousness: but a false witness demaster of the present. But the
ceit. There is that speaketh like the conceited man shuts out all this piercings of a sword: but the tongue of
the wise is health. The lip of truth light. He is too clever to learn.
shall be established for ever: but a lying He is 80 inflated with his own tongue is but for a moment. Deceit is opinions, that he cannot admit the in the heart of them that imagine evil;
but to the counsellors of peace is joy. opinions of others. Secondly :
There shall no evil happen to the just : Because he exposes himself to the but the wicked shall be filled with misscorn of society. Vanity or con chief. Lying lips are abomination to ceit is the most contemptible of
the Lord: but they that deal truly are attributes, all men despising them
his delight. A prudent man concealeth
knowledge; but the heart of fools proin others. A vain man is a social claimeth foolishness." - Prov. xii. 16 offence.
-23. II. THE DOCILE. He that Speech is again the subject of hearkeneth unto counsel is wise." these verses. Thomas Carlyle First: Because he enriches his has said many strong and strikmental resources. His ear is ever ing things about speech and siopen to the voice of intelligence, lence. But his finest utterance and that voice drops priceless sen on the subject will scarcely bear tences of truth every hour. He comparison in pith, point, and consults books, men, and nature, profundity with those of Soloand “he increaseth knowledge.” mon.
In these verses he draws Secondly: Because he increases his a contrast between different kinds power of influence. Knowledge is of speech. power. The more intelligence a I. HERE ARE THE RASH AND THE man has, the wider and higher his PRUDENT. “ The fool's wrath is dominion over others; and “the presently known.” Anger fires man that hearkeneth unto the the man's soul, thoughts are counsel of the wise” is constantly forged in flame, and he speaks adding to his stock of knowledge. them out at once. His wrath Thirdly : Because he increases his is presently known. “A fool securities of safety. “In the mul. uttereth all his mind." titude of counsellors there is Such rash speech as this is very safety." Young men avoid as you foolish, because (1) Anger is would avoid a fiend the spirit and scarcely worthy of speech. (2) the manners of opiniators. Anger in rash speech may accom“There are a sort of men whose visages
plish immense mischief. In conDo cream and mantle, like a standing trast with this is the prudent
pond; And do a wilful stillness entertain,
man, “who covereth shame.” An With purpose to be dressed in an opinion
angry passion may blaze up in Of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit;
his nature, but he covereth it;
he does not speak it out, quenches tongue “is but for a moment.” it by suppression.
Falsehood cannot live long, the IÍ. HERE IS THE TRUB
laws of the universe are against THE FALSE. “He that speaketh it. It is a bubble that floats on truth, showeth forth righteous the stream, but breaks with one ness. What is it to speak | puff of air, and is lost in the great “ truth?" Not merely to speak current of being. our conceptions of truth, for our V. Here 18 THE MISCHIEVOUS conceptions may be false. But AND THE PACIFIC. « Deceit is in to speak those conceptions of the heart of them that imagine truth that agree with the nature evil, but to the counsellors of peace of things. Speaking such concep is joy. There shall no evil happen tions is a manifestation of righte to the just, but the wicked shall ousness The words are radia be filled with mischief.” There is tions of right. “But a false a speech that is mischievous; it witness deceit.” The man who comes from the heart of him who speaks falsehood, instead of show is unrighteous, and who imagines ing forth righteousness, shows evil. It disturbs social peace, it forth the dishonest “ deceit." He generates strife, it creates wars. cheats with his tongue.
In contrast with this is the III. HERE IS THE WOUNDING pacific to the counsellors of peace AND THE HEALING, “There is is joy.
Blessed are the peacethat speaketh like the piercings makers, for they shall be called the of a sword.” There is a spiteful, children of God.” malignant speech, that acts as a VI. HERE IS THE CONDEMNED javelin, or a sword-it “pierces' AND THE APPROVED.
The false --it is designed to wound-and it are condemned. “ Lying lips are does wound. There are those in an abomination unto the Lord.” society, whose "teeth are spears God is a God of truth, and falseand arrows, and whose tongues hood is an abomination unto are sharp swords.” (Ps. lxii. 4.) Him. On the other hand, they. The Psalmist was frequently that deal truly are “his delight." wounded by such speech. 'As A man of truth is a man of God. with a sword in my bones mine VII. HERE IS THE RECKLESS cnemies reproach me.” (Ps. xxxii. 10.) How many there are who dent man concealeth knowledge ; cannot speak a kind word : “the but the heart of fools proclaimeth poison of asps is under their lips.” foolishness.” The language does In contrast with this is the healing not mean that a prudent man tongue. “The tongue of the wise never speaks out his knowledge, is health.” There is a speech that but that he is not hasty in speech. is calming, succouring, strength He reflects and deliberates ; ening—a tonic to the heart. whereas the fool speaks out
IV. HERE IS THE PERMANENT everything at once that comes AND THE TRANSIENT. “ The lip into his mind; all the absurd of truth shall be established for and filthy things of his heart. ever.” Truth is an imperishable “ The tongue of the wise useth thing. He that speaks it drops knowledge aright, but the mouth that into the world that will out of fools poureth out foolishness.” live all human institutions, and (Prov. xv. 2.) We are told that growthrough the ages. It is the in the prudent man should keep corruptible seed, " that liveth and silence. • Let us be silent,” says abideth for ever.” In contrast Emerson, " that we may hear with this is the transient: a lying the whisper of the gods.”
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