Imágenes de página

child who died happily, who had been in St. John's School.

Thomas Gosland was in the School for Religious Instruction about six years : he left the school, July 1817. He attended the chapel regularly after he had left the school. He was a steady orderly lad; but nothing remarkable occurred until May 1818, when he was taken with an illness which terminated in a decline ; he continued sometimes better and sometimes worse, until March 11th, 1820.

He was confined to his room only about a month before he died. About the time he took to his room, he began to be very desirous for the Scriptures to be read to him, or to be reading them himself, and lamented he had been so giddy while in the school.

He said, many things occurred to his mind now, which he had paid but little attention to at the time. It was a great grief to him, he said, to think what good instructions had been given to him and he had been so thoughtless.

There was evidently a great change in him; he now was frequently on his knees, weeping, and praying for pardon. He said he was so great a sinner, he was afraid the Almighty would not hear him. He said he had broken every coinmandment, and his heart was so hard he could not repent as he wished to do. stant prayer was for the pardon of his sins,

His con

[blocks in formation]

through a Saviour's cross, and for a renewed heart, and for a portion of the Divine Spirit. These were his own words.

One day a person called on him, and began to tell him the news of the day. He replied, he did not wish to hear them; his soul and his salvation concerned him the most.

It was a great pleasure to him to read some of the books that had been given him from the school. One in particular, Mason's Remains, he seemed to read with much earnestness. But the Bible was the chief. A friend offered to lend him some books; he thanked him, and laid his hand on the Bible, and said, “ Sir, I do not want books; I have it all here."

One morning he had been left by himself; and when his mother returned, he told her he had been able to rise on his knees, and had been to prayer, and said, “O, I am so comfortable, I feel so happy!" One evening his mother had to go out on business, and asked him to have a neighbour to sit with him. He replied, No, he did not want company, for he should not be alone. This he spoke in a very feeling manner.

He was visited frequently by a good young man, an old school-fellow. He used to read some portion of Scripture to him, and converse on religious subjects, and always spent a short time in prayer with him before he left him. He visited him the evening before he died ; and when he was going to prayer, bé said, " Is there any thing in particular you wish me to ask for?" He said, “O yes, that my heart may be softened, and that I may have more faith and confidence in Jesus Christ."

The following morning he seemed better, and more cheerful than usual. In the afternoon he read for some time, and after tea he asked his mother to read with him, and in that way he read four chapters of the Epistle of St. John. He then said he was tired; but wished her to read to him. After that he was repeating some of Dr. Watts's Hymns. Very soon after he was suddenly seized with a difficulty of breathing, and in a very short time he breathed his last, praying most fervently for pardon, through a Redeemer, as long as his lips or tongue could move.

I now come to the fourth idea, That God in his providence generally makes a clear disa tinction between the evil and good, even in this life. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is per-, fect towards him 4.

For instance, we see this in the case of Joseph and his brethren. For a time Joseph

4 2 Chron. xvi. 9.

was in prison, and his brethren triumphed but God's eye was beholding the evil and the good. Joseph was made lord of Egypt, and his; brethren came before him, and their conscience accused them; And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us 5.

So Job and his friends. For a time Job was upon a dungbill, covered with boils, and his friends accusing him of bypocrisy. But God's eyes were beholding the evil and the good, and after a while his friends were rebuked, and Job blessed with more temporal blessings than he had before, as well as with the fayour of God. :

Thus good Daniel: he served God with all his heart, but he was persecuted and thrown into a den of lions—but the eyes of the Lord were there, ----God stopt the lions' mouths, and the king afterwards commanded that those very men. who had accused him, should be thrown into the den of lions from whence Daniel had been delivered ; and the lions had the mastery of them, and brake all their bones in pieces or ever they came at the bottom of the den.

So Ananias and Sapphira, who agreed to tell a lie; they thought to keep back part of

5 Genesis, xlii. 21.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

the money for the land: they thought no one saw them ;-but God's eye was there; and when they told the lie to the Apostle, first Ananias, and then Sapphira, fell down dead at the Apostle's feet; and the young men wound them up, and carried them out; and great fear was upon all. My dear children, all through your future lives, remember, The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good; and if you wish to be happy here and hereafter, you must serve and love God, and then God will protect and bless you.

The fifth thought is, That even if wicked men are not found out in this world, they certainly will in the next. If, for wise reasons, God sees fit to let the wicked sometimes escape in this life, he will punish them in another world. The day of judgment is approaching. God now marks all, and enters down all in his Book of Remembrance, and then he will bring forth every thing. Then the murderer will be found out; the thief will be found out; every sin done in secret, and which was hidden from the eyes of men so long as the sinner lived, will be published before the sun, whilst angels and men hear. The grave is only a prisonhouse, from which God will bring forth the wicked to be judged at the last day; and there is no escape from that eternal judgment.

« AnteriorContinuar »