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only shalt thou
After our Lord's victory, angels ministered to him. What kind of aid they imparted, who can tell? There may be something more than poetry in the words of Milton, where he represents them as setting
"Before him spread
tempting the Messiah too in the cha- | God, and him racter of his great work. The monstrous serve." impiety of this proposal was not for a moment to be endured. We are struck not only with the wisdom and point of our Lord's third reply; but also with its decision-its tone of authority-its "Get thee hence, Satan." "Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the A table of celestial food; divine, Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou Ambrosial fruits, fetched from the tree of life; serve." Here is quoted in substance And from the fount of life ambrosial drink, That soon refresh'd him wearied, and repair'd the first commandment in the decaWhat hunger, if aught, hunger had impair'd; logue. It meets the case. Without Or thirst; and as he fed, angelic quires paraphrase or comment its application Sung heavenly anthems of his victory is clear. Worship must be given to Over temptation and the tempter proud." none but God. This admits of no ex- Thus ended our Lord's temptation. On ception. From this there can be no its issue depended the result of his addeparture. We dare not violate a di- vent. A failure here would have been vine command. How the two adver- fatal. Success here was the pledge of saries seem to close as the conflict nears success to the close. Oftentimes the its end! Fiercer grows the fight. It outset of a course decides its character was a terrible blow which Satan last to the end. So here. This triumph dealt but he receives in return a was the earnest of a long series of illusthrust so deadly that he first stagger s trious conquests until on the cross Jesus and then flees. All the holy energies of exclaimed, "It is finished," and tramImmanuel are roused. They unite in pled Satan under his feet. Then there one invincible power. Their undivided was a glorious display of his divine utterance, like a voice of thunder, ter-power-a repetition before many witrifies the prince of hell. Now the an- nesses of the scenes which first transcient promise sees the dawn of its fulfil-pired in the solitude of the desert. ment. The seed of the woman asserts Satan still walks the world, but, like his power and, discomfited, abashed, Samson shorn of his locks, his strength covered with confusion and dishonour, has gone from him. He is still to be watched and feared; but his power is limited within the compass of our Saviour's control. The feeblest saint relying on Jesus is secure from harm.
"The devil leaveth him."
Let us not forget the lesson of this last victory. Many things may say, This, and this, will we give thee, if thou wilt but fall down and worship us." Many objects may claim the heart's supreme love and the life's best service. Idolatry, brethren, is a sin that lurks in the near neighbourhood of every man's heart. It behoves us well to watch him; for he is a wily foe. If hear but the softest whisper you escape his lips, be prompt and decisive with your reply, "It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy
With two or three practical lessons from the whole subject we bring our reflections to a close.
1. Be not ignorant of Satan's devices.
How manifold are his arts! how well he suits his temptations to our circumstances! how he perseveres in his endeavours! how he varies his modes of attack! how he clothes his temptations in the dress of piety! There are two enemies it fits us well to know-Satan
"He knows what sore temptations mean,
For he has felt the same."
and our own heart. Most men stumble because they are ignorant of the deceitfulness of the one, and the devices of the other. Satan knows far more of their hearts than they know themselves; and hence they are easily overcome. Brethren! ponder that expression, "The wiles of the devil."
"For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able"-able not simply by power, but also by sympathy; able in a sense in which he would not have been able had he not been tempted himself "he is able to succour them
2. See the best mode of meeting tempta- that are tempted." "For we have not tion.
Resist at once, and resist with the right weapon. Wield "the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God." It will always serve your purpose; you will find it mighty through God. At all times be ready with, "It is written." 3. You are tempted and often condemn yourself, confounding temptation with
Jesus was tempted, and yet he knew no sin. Temptation does not become sin till you yield to its power. It may sometimes be very difficult to discriminate between temptation and inward depravity. An intimate acquaintance with your own nature will greatly help you to decide; but do not write bitter things against yourself. Suppose not that every time you are tempted you sin; your holiest seasons are frequently those when the fiery darts of the enemy in thick showers fall.
4. You are tempted and filled with distress; you want sympathy and succour. New Park Street, London.
an high priest who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."
5. You are tempted, and often fear you will fall.
Jesus was tempted and triumphed ; his triumph is the certain pledge of yours; you are one with himself; fear not, victory awaits you. Cheer up, tempted brother! abandon not all hope; lift up thy head, for thy redemption draweth nigh. It looks not seemly in thee thus to weep and fold thine arms in despair; be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might. Your Leader beckons you onward to himself, and lo! a voice from the excellent glory speaks, "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne."
CIRCULATION OF THE SCRIPTURES IN FRANCE.
THIS last year, a Christian man, on a journey of business, came, on a Saturday evening, to a country village. The inn people were unwilling to listen to him, when, on the sabbath morning, he began to speak to them of the gospel. Disheartened by their coldness, he walked out to seek some retired spot, where he might
VOL. XV.-FOURTH SERIES.
meditate and pray alone. His path led him to an orchard, near the door of a farm-house, and as he approached it he heard a voice reading. The door of the house-as often happens in summerwas open, and, placing himself not far from it, he heard a chapter of the scriptures read in an audible voice. When the reading terminated, a general
conversation ensued upon the contents a stranger who came into that neigh
of the chapter. He then presented himself to their view. The master of the house sat at the top of the table; a great bible, printed by the Bible Society, was before him, and about fifteen persons, to whom he had been reading, were around him. When the stranger declared that he was a friend of the bible, and a disciple of Christ, he was at once received by these Roman Catholics with affection. Confidence was at once established between them, and they told him that the bible had been bought about two years ago, from
bourhood; and that, since that time, that party had met every sabbath to read it. And when this stranger asked the master of the house, "Did no one direct you thus to meet?" he said, "Oh, yes; I was directed by these words, 'Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.' This made me call my neighbours together; and since that time we have been knocking at the door of heaven." Now, this was where no protestant had ever been.-Noel's Lecture on the Progress of the Gospel in France.
A Review of the Moral and Religious Condition of the Irish People, from the Conquest under Henry II. until the Present Times. By RICHARD FITZRALPH. Dublin: S. B. Oldham. London: Seeleys, 12mo., pp. viii., 59.
immorality, and to promote the growth of virtue and of the Christian religion." For some centuries Ireland had been celebrated for learning and piety, and at this time the customs of its churches were more in accordance with those of the east than with those of Rome.
primitive order of pure Christianity in their ecclesiastical polity; though there is too much ground to believe that they retained but little, if any thing more, of the purity of the first Irish churches. But even at this degenerate period of their church history, it would appear that they had not altogether adopted the titles and gradations of Rometitles which are more characteristic of, and congenial with, feudal times and dignities, than with the scriptural model of the churches of the first Christians. They did not as yet avowedly admit the supremacy of the pope; Ireland was the last country in Europe to do so; but the ready and facile subjection of the Irish at this time to the see of Rome gives painful indications of their decay in piety and in the pure faith of the gospel of Jesus."
RICHARD FITZRALPH is a name as-"They still retained something of the sumed for the occasion by a gentleman whose opportunities for observation and right-heartedness render his testimony valuable, but whose position in society makes it inconvenient to avow himself as the author. He is neither an adherent of the church of Rome nor of the Protestant establishment; he is neither a minister of religion nor an agent of any of the societies which are aiming at the improvement of the Irish people; but he is an upright, devout, and conscientious observer of the religious condition of his countrymen, and a student of Irish history. He is just such a man, therefore, as impartial inquirers would wish to hear as a witness; and it is as the voluntary deposition of a respectable witness that we bring his work before the reader's attention. Abstaining pretty much from the expression of our own opinions, we shail simply adduce some of his.
The princes of Ireland submitted themselves to Henry, and the clergy It is well known that in the year acknowledged the supremacy of the 1156, Pope Adrian, being ex officio pro- Pope; but the people, whose condition prietor of the whole earth, granted was bad enough before under their naIreland to Henry II. of England, by a tive petty sovereigns, gained nothing Bull in which he said, "You promise to but disadvantage from the change. pay us out of every house a yearly "Mutual conveniences are, as jurists acknowledgment of one penny, and to say, the foundation of all contracts and maintain the rights of the church with- bargains; so it was with Henry and out the least infringement or diminu- Adrian; they had each his own wishes tion. Upon these conditions we consent and objects with respect to Ireland, but and allow that you make a descent upon miserable was the result to the poor that island, to enlarge the bounds of inhabitants. They, though the persons the church, to check the progress of most interested, were the least con
sulted in the transaction-their green fields, their toil and labour, their minds and their bodies, were parcelled out for merchandize between Henry and Adrian, and between their respective followers and votaries, as if they were the subjects of legitimate traffic, just as if the bargain had been about cows and horses, or other articles of barter, and not their fellow men, having heads and hearts, souls and bodies, like themselves. These poor people were henceforth doomed for centuries to be hewers of wood and drawers of water in the bondage and servitude of lords temporal and lords spiritual."
At the time of the Reformation the condition of the Irish people was truly deplorable. "They were counted as aliens and enemies by the English; it was often adjudged to be no felony or murder to kill a 'mere Irishman;' even in times of peace it was a good plea to an action, and was often so decided, that the plaintiff in the suit was an 'Hibernicus' or Irishman, or what was equivalent, that the complainant was not one of the 'Quinque Sanguinibus,' that is, one of the five septs or clans that were made denizens, or enfranchised by special grace. The English were forbidden by divers heavy penal laws to marry, to foster, or to make gossipred with the Irish, or to have any trade or commerce in fairs or markets with the Irish. So late as the 28th Henry VIII., the English were forbidden to marry a person of Irish blood, though the person had gotten a charter of denization, unless he had done homage to the king in chancery, and given sureties by recognizance for his loyalty. Sir John Davis says that for three hundred and fifty years after the conquest, the laws of England were forbidden to the Irish." p. 22.
The attempts that were subsequently made to introduce the Reformation aggravated existing evils. "Its professed
friends were its worst enemies; they did not use moral means to produce moral results-they did not use the scriptures, the Irish language, prayer, faith, reason, and arguments, to enlighten and convert the Irish-these were not the means generally employed; had such been used there is every reason to believe that, under the divine blessing, there would have been abundant success. There were the same materials to work on in Ireland as in other countries. The people were not more attached to popery in Ireland than in other parts. The exactions, insolence, and profligacy of the Romish hierarchy were the subject of complaint in Ireland as in other places; the only difference was that their extortions in Ireland were but an item in the catalogue of many grievances, whilst in other countries they were the most prominent evils. The faith too which triumphed in other parts of Europe would have had equal success in Ireland, if the same means were adopted to propagate it; there was the same Lord, rich in his mercies and goodness to all, to bless his own truth to the poor Irish, as he did to the Germans, the Swiss, the English, and Scotch. These nations heard the word preached in their own language; they understood what was said to them; they felt its power; they were convinced, and many were converted, and lived and died rejoicing in the faith of Jesus. How different was the mode adopted in Ireland. Church promotions were only given to those who could perform the reformed service in the English tongue, and if the latter could not be had, then in Latin. These languages the people did not understand. Even in a great portion of the pale, the Irish was the only language then spoken. It might be well asked, Were men ever converted by preaching addressed to them in an unknown tongue? Hath any nation changed its