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LESSON LXXVI.

Hymn to the Stars.--MONTHLY REPOSITORY.

Ay, there ye shine, and there have shone,

In one eternal 'hour of prime,' Each rolling burningly, alone,

Through boundless space and countless time. Ay, there ye shine the golden dews

That pave the realms by seraphs trod; There, through yon echoing vault, diffuse

The song of choral worlds to God.

Ye visible spirits ! bright as erst

Young Eden's birthnight saw ye shine On all her flowers and fountains first,

Yet sparkling from the hand divine;
Yes, bright as then ye smiled, to catch

The music of a sphere so fair,
Ye hold your high, immortal watch,

And gird your God's pavilion there.
Gold frets to dust,-yet there ye are;

Time rots the diamond,—there ўе roll
In primal light, as if each star

Enshrined an everlasting soul!
And does it not-since.your bright throngs

One all-enlightening Spirit own,
Praised there by pure, sidereal tongues,

Eternal, glorious, blest, alone?

Could man but see what

ye
have

seen, Unfold awhile the shrouded past, From all that is, to what has been,

The glance how rich! the range how vast ! The birth of time, the rise, the fall

Of empires, myriads, ages flown,
Thrones, cities, tongues, arts, worships,—all

The things whose echoes are not gone.
Ye saw rapt Zoroaster send

His soul into your mystic reign; Ye saw the adoring Sabian bend

The living hills his mighty fane !

Beneath his blue and beaming sky,

He worshipped at your lofty shrine,
And deemed he saw, with gifted eye,

The Godhead in his works divine.

And there ye shine, as if to mock

The children of a mortal sire.
The storm, the bolt, the earthquake's shock,

The red volcano's cataract fire,
Drought, famine, plague, and blood, and flame,

All nature's ills--and life's worse woes,
Are nought to you: ye smile the same,

And scorn alike their dawn and close.

Ay, there

ye

roll-emblems sublime
Of Him, whose spirit o'er us moves,
Beyond the clouds of grief and crime,

Still shining on the world he loves :
Nor is one scene to mortals given,

That more divides the soul and sod,
Than yon proud heraldry of heaven-

Yon burning blazonry of God!

LESSON LXXVII.

Religion the only Basis of Society --CHANNING. Religion is a social concern; for it operates powerfully on society, contributing, in various ways, to its stability and prosperity. Religion is not merely a private affair; the community is deeply interested in its diffusion; for it is the best support of the virtues and principles, on which the social order rests. Pure and undefiled religion is, to do good; and it follows, very plainly, that, if God be the Author and Friend of society, then, the recognition of him must enforce all social duty, and enlightened piety must give its whole strength to public order.

Few men suspect, perhaps no man comprehends, the extent of the support given by religion to every virtue. No man, perhaps, is aware, how much our moral and social sentiments are fed from this fountain ; "how powerless conscience would become, without the belief of a God; how palsied would be human benevolence, were there not the sense of a higher benevolence to quicken and sustain it; how suddenly the whole social fabric would quake, and with what a fearful crash it would sink into hopeless ruin, were the ideas of a supreme Being, of accountableness, and of a future life, to be utterly erased from every mind.

And, let men thoroughly believe that they are the work and sport of chance; that no superior intelligence concerns itself with human affairs; that all their improvements perish forever at death; that the weak have no guardian, and the injured no avenger; that there is no recompense for sacrifices to uprightness and the public good; that an oath is unheard in heaven; that secret crimes have no witness but the perpetrator ; that human existence has no

purpose,

and human virtue no unfailing friend ; that this brief life is every thing to us, and death is total, everlasting extinction; once let them thoroughly abandon religion; and who can conceive or describe the extent of the desolation which would follow!

We hope, perhaps, that human laws and natural sympathy would hold society together. As reasonably might we believe, that, were the sun quenched in the heavens, our torches would illuminate, and our fires quicken and fertilize the creation. What is there in human nature to awaken respect and tenderness, if map is the unprotected insect of a day? And what is he more, if atheism be true ?

Erase all thought and fear of God from a community, and selfishness and sensuality would absorb the whole man. Appetite, knowing no restraint, and suffering, having no solace or hope, would trample in scom on the restraints of human laws. Virtue, duty, principle, would be mocked and spurned as unmeaning sounds. A sordid self-interest would supplant every other feeling, and man would become, in fact, what the theory of atheism declares him to be. a companion for brutes.

LESSON LXXVIII.

Punishment of a Liar.--BIBLE. Now Nā'šman, captain of the host of the king of Syria, was a great man with his master, and honourable; because

by him the Lord had given deliverance unto Syria : he was also a mighty man in valour ; but he was a lép'er. And the Syrians had gone out by companies, and had brought away captive, out of the land of Israel, a little maid, and she waited on Naaman's wife. And she said unto her mistress, Would God my lord were with the prophet that is in Samaria! for he would recover him of his leprosy.

And one went in, and told his lord, saying, Thus and thus said the maid that is of the land of Israel. And the king of Syria said, Go to, go, and I will send a letter unto the king of Israel. And he departed, and took with him ten talents of silver, and six thousand pieces of gold, and ten changes of raiment. And he brought the letter to the king of Israel, saying, Now, when this letter is come unto thee, behold, I have therewith sent Naaman my servant to thee, that thou mayest recover him of his leprosy.

And it came to pass, when the king of Israel had read the letter, that he rent his clothes, and said, Am I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man doth send unto me to recover a man of his leprosy? Wherefore consider, I pray you, and see how he seeketh a quarrel against me.

And it was so, when Elisha, the man of God, had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes ? let him come now to me, and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel. So Naaman came, with his horses and with his chariot, and stood at the door of the house of Elisha. And Elisha sent a messenger unto him, saying, Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean.

But Naaman was wroth, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the Lord his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper. Are not Ab'ănă and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel ? may I not wash in them, and be clean? So he turned, and went away in a rage.

And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather, then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean? Then went he down, and dipped himself seven times in Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God : and his flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child, and he was clean.

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And he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and came and stood before him: and he said, Behold, now I know that there is no God in all the earth but in Israel; now therefore, I pray thee, take a blessing of thy servant. But he said, As the Lord liveth, before whom I stand, I will receive none. And he urged him to take it : but he refused.

So he departed from him a But Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, Behold, my master hath spared Naaman this Syrian, in not receiving at his hands that which he brought; but, as the Lord liveth, I will run after him, and take somewhat of him.

So Gehazi followed after Naaman: and when Naaman saw him running after him, he lighted down from the chariot to meet him, and said, Is all well ? And he said, All is well. My master hath sent me, saying, Behold, even now there be come to me from mount Ephraim two young men of the sons of the prophets: give them, I pray thee, a talent of silver, and two changes of garments.

And Naaman said, Be content; take two talents. And he urged him, and bound two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of garments, and laid them upon two of his servants; and they bare them before him. And when he came to the tower, he took them from their hand, and bestowed them in the house ; and he let the men go, and they departed. But he went in, and stood before his master.

And Elisha said unto him, Whence comest thou, Gehazi ? And he said, Thy servant went no whither. And he said unto him, Went not my heart with thee, when the man turned again from his chariot to meet thee? Is it a time to receive money, and to receive garments, and oliveyards, and vineyards, and sheep, and oxen, and men-servants, and maid-servants ? The leprosy, therefore, of Naaman shall cleave unto thee.

And he went out from his presence a leper as white as snow.

LESSON LXXIX.

Claims of the Jews.-NOEL. In very truth, there are claims, which the Jew can urge, in which the Gentile cannot share. In advocating the cause

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