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DO NOT OFFER IT.
BY THEODORE L. CUYLER, D.D. Let us be thankful that the Christian reform of temperance is coming to be linked with prayer and Christian effort as it has never been before. It would seem as if God is arousing His people all over our land to labour for the salvation of the most pitiable sinner, the drunkard, and to oppose the pernicious drinking customs of society. If the followers of Christ Jesus do not lay hold of these two vital movements, who will ? But it is worse than idle to
for the victims of strong drink as long as good people continue to set the deadly drink before the eyes of the easily tempted. Thousands have been ensnared by a wineglass placed before them by professed Christians, who ought to have cut their right hands off sooner than put a decanter on their tables.
One of the saddest letters I ever read was written, in a most elegant penmanship, within the wall of a charity hospital. The writer, a welleducated man, says:
“ How well I remember the first glass I ever took ! It was at C., in the State of Ohio. Could Mr. K. have foreseen the fruits of that sherry-cobbler,' that single drink, he might better have given me a dose of strychnine in its stead. I am an embodiment of the fruits of that one drink. All the misery of my wretched life sprang from it. The rum bottle has been the skeleton in my closet ever since.”
Now, the man who wrote those touching lines was a grievous sinner against God and his own soul; for he knew just what he was doing. But we ask, was not the man who tempted him a partner in the crime of destroying a human life, which never can be lived over again ? Grant that the tempter did the mischievous act thoughtlessly, “Evil is wrought by want of thought
As well as by want of heart.” What are brains and conscience given to people for, except to teach
them not to place stumbling-blocks and traps before the feet of their fellow-creatures ? In these days it will not answer for any Christian to plead ignorance, or
innocent intention, when he or she sets out an intoxicating glass upon the table. In that hour when God makes inquisition for souls, He will certainly not spare the unfaithful servant who, instead of warning his neighbour against the danger, absolutely invited him to commit the fatal act. A servant of Christ must not only be sober, denying ungodly lusts, but also, “pure from the blood of all men. our brothers' keepers ; and woe be to usif we become our brother's tempters !
After I had laboured hard to reform an intemperate friend, and the poor man had kept sober many months, the whole effort was overthrown in one moment by a friend," who pressed him to “take a social glass' with him! That “ friend” was a fatal enemy, for the unhappy inebri. ate has never been reformed! He is a wreck to-day.
It is useless to sophisticate ourselves with the stereotyped plea that “wine-drinking is not a sin per se." There are very many circumstances in which the Christian who drinks or who offers an intoxicating beverage commits a heinous sin. He sins against the law of self-denial for others' sake. He sins against the primal principle of love to his fellow men. He sins against his covenant to “ walk circumspectly.” He throws his influence on the side of Satan, and wantonly presumes on God's forbearance to ward off the consequences of his act. What right have I to “put a bottle to my neighbour's lips," when I know that the bottle has sent millions to perdition ?
The Christian's duty is clear. It is to come out and be separate? from dangerous practices, and “not to touch unclean things.' Not only are we to strive to pluck brands from the burning, but also we must labour to extinguish the fires that burn "the brands" so fearfully.
A A 2
Many a lonely hour Was pass'd in prayer for thee, mistaken
To that Eternal Power, Who whispers comfort when the heart
But I have never utter'd To mortal ear the anguish I have known,
The fears, the hopes that flutter'd Within me, when I thought of thee, my
Thanks be to heaven's kindness, A guiding star has sought thee in thy
Scatter'd thy mental blindness, And led thee to thy father's heart and
The spells of vice are broken, And virtue wooes thee to her shrine again ;
Her love is still unbroken, Thy heart is free, she cannot woo in vain.
ENGLAND. In England, a man of small fortune may cast his regards around him, and say, with truth and exultation, “ I am lodged in a house that affords me conveniences and comforts, which even a king could not command some cen
There are ships crossing the seas in every direction, to bring what is useful to me from all parts of the earth. In China, men are gathering the tea-leaf for me; in America, they are planting cotton for me; in the West India Islands, they are preparing my sugar and my coffee ; in Italy, they are feeding silkworms for me; in Saxony, they are shearing sheep, to make me clothing; at home, powerful steam-engines are spinning and weaving for me, and making cutlery for me, and pumping the mines, that minerals useful to me may be procured. My patrimony was small, yet I have post.coaches running day and night, on all the roads, to carry my correspondence; I have roads, and canals, and bridges, to bear the coal for my winter fire; nay, I have protecting fleets and armies around my happy country, to secure my enjoyments and repose. Then I have editors and printers, who daily send me an account of what is going on throughout the world, amongst all these people who serve me; and, in a corner of my house, I have Books !
form? His garments how white! and his visage
how pale ! His helmet the snow-flake, his weapon the
hail ! And icicles, fresh as from glacial rocks, Behold how they hang from his hoary old
locks ! The wee, tiny children are flocking to see Whoever this fearful old stranger can be ! 'Tis Winter, “Old Winter," I know by his
pace, And the light that reflects from his frosty
He walketh abroad while we slumber and
dream, Curls up the green herbage, and glazeth
the stream ; He baketh the glebe and he blanches the
hills, He curdles the fountains, and crusheth
the rills; Lays bare the deep forest, and withers the
flower, Disrobes the old ruin, and batters the
tower. He waveth his wand amid beauty and
worth, And scatters the wreck o'er the face of
the earth! " Old Winter "rules over land, ocean, and
sea, And a potent magician and laird is he.
But still, though his presence be frigid
and drear, He never comes forth but he bodeth of
cheer; His breath may be bleak, and his shouting
may craze, His touch may be icy, and sharper his
ways! The light of his glance, as it flits on the
may freeze !
Winter" has brought.
THE PRODIGAL SON.
And, heedless of the morrow,
the miracle of all my possessions,
VARIOUS. more wonderful than the wishing-cap THERE is a certain magic or charm in of the Arabian Tales ; for they trans
company, for it will assimilate, and port me instantly, not only to all
make you like to them, by much conplaces, but to all times. By my versation with them ; if they be good books, I can conjure up before me, to
company, it is a great means to make vivid existence, all the great and good
you good, or confirm you in goodness; men of old ; and, for my own private but if they be bad, it is twenty to one satisfaction, I can make them act over but they will infect and corrupt you. again the most renowned of all their
Therefore be wary and shy in choosexploits. In a word, from the equa
ing, and entertaining, or frequenting tor to the pole, and from the begin
any company or companions; be not ning of time until now, by my books,
too hasty in comunitting yourself to I can be where I please.'
them ; stand off a while till you have This picturc is not overcharged, inquired of some (that you know by exand might be much extended ; such
perience to be faithful), what they being the miracle of God's goodness
are; observe what company they keep; and providence, that each individual
be not too easy to gain acquaintance, of the civilised millions that cover the
but stand off and keep a distance yet earth, may have nearly the same en
awhile, till you have observed and joyments, as if he were the single lord of all.—DR. ARNOTT's Elements of that are greedy of acquaintance, or
learnt touching them. Men or women Physic.
hasty in it, are oftentimes snared in ill
company before they are aware, and PROVIDENCE.
entangled so that they cannot easily
get loose from it after, when they The ways of providence are often to
would,—Sir Matthew Hale. us dark and perplexed, so that we are ready to imagine that good can never result from what appears to us to be
The common blessings of God are not directly contrary to our interest; and
dispensed without a directing Pro
vidence. Nature works not without we are often tempted to think that
the God of nature.-Caryl. those very providential feelings of God, which have for their object our present and eternal welfare, are rather
LET no company or respect ever draw proofs of His displeasure, or evidences
you to excess in drink, for be you well of His vindictive judgment. All these
assured, that if ever that possess you, things are against me, said poor, de
you are instantly drunk to all respects sponding Jacob; whereas, instead of
your friends will otherwise pay you, being against him, all these things
and shall by unequal staggering paces were for him ; and by all these means go to your grave with confusion of was the merciful God working for
face, as well in them that love you, as the preservation of himself and his in yourself; and therefore abhor all family, and the fulfilment of His company that might entice you that ancient promise, that the posterity of
way.-Lord Strafford. Abraham should be as the stars of heaven for multitude. How strange It must be owned that we are not able is it that our faith, after so many evi- to account for the method of Divine dences of His goodness, should still Providence in many instances; and be so weak ; and that our opinion of whosoever is not abandoned of all Him should be so imperfect that we modesty, must readily acknowledge can never trust in Him but while He that it is reasonable it should be so. is under our own eye! If we see Him - Bradford. producing good, we can believe that He is doing so, and that is all. If we WHEN Diogenes saw a house to be believe not, He abides faithful; but sold, whereof the owner was given to our unbelief must make our own way drink, “ I thought at the last,” quoth extremely perplexing and difficult. - Diogenes, “ he would vomit a whole Dr. Adam Clarke.
house."-Sir Walter Raleigh.
forty-two minutes a.m.
He is near Phenomena of the Months. the moon on the 3rd, and again on
Saturn sets on the 8th four DECEMBER.
hours fourteen minutes a.m., and on The sun rises on the 1st at forty-six the last day two hours thirty-eight minutes after seven, and sets at fifty- minutes a.m.
He is near the moon two minutes after three. He rises at
on the 2nd, and again on the 30th. nine minutes after eight on the 31st, Partial eclipse of the moon on the and sets at fifty-eight minutes after 5th, partly visible at Greenwich. It three. The days shorten twenty- begins at three hours twenty-eight three minutes in the morning and six minutes p.m. The middle of the minutes in the evening ; total, twenty- eclipse will be at five hours eight nine minutes during the month. minutes p.m., and the end will be at
The moon is full on the 5th at four- six hours forty-nine minutes p.m. in teen minutes after five in the after
longitude 70 deg. E. of Greenwich, noon, New moon on the 21st at and latitude 22 deg. N. seven minutes after five in the after
High water at London Bridge on noon. She is nearest to the earth on
the 1st, forty-eight minutes after nine the 23rd, and most distant from it on in the morning, and twenty-two mithe 11th.
nutes after ten in the evening. On Mercury is a morning star, rising the last day of the month, twenty on the 2nd one hour and forty-seven minutes after ten in the morning, minutes before sunrise. On the last
and fifty-five minutes after ten in the day in the year, the planet and the evening. sun rise nearly together. He is near the moon on the 20th, and at his greatest distance from the sun on the
NOTEWORTHY EVENTS. 26th. Venus is a morning star, rising on
1st. Princess of Wales born, 1844. the 7th at one hour forty-one minutes
14th. Prince Consort died, 1861.
14th. Princess Alice died, 1878. before sunrise. On the last day of the year fifty-three minutes before the
29th. J. Wickliffe died, 1384. sun. She is near the moon on the 20th. Mars rises on the 6th one hour and
MUSIC IN NATURE. thirty minutes after sunset. On the
LOVE thee, Twilight! last day of the year he rises in day- O'er the harp of thought thy passing wind light. He is near the moon on the Awakens all the music of the mind, 8th, and in opposition to the sun on And joy and sorrow, as the spirit burns, the 27th.
And Hope and Memory sweep the chords
by turns, Jupiter sets on the 8th two hours
While Contemplation, on seraphic wings, thirty minutes before sunrise, and on
Mounts with the flame of sacrifice and the last day of the year three hours sings.
Mutual-Aid Association Reporter.
A WORD TO THE MEMBERS OF
DISTRICT SUB-COMMITTEES. MY DEAR BRETHREN,—The Arguseyes of our Association are upon us. As one of the leaders in the van of this fresh impetus I fear that our
efforts may have been impeded be
our duties are undefined. I would, therefore, meekly suggest to the first person named on the list for each district-see Magazine for Au. gust—the absolute necessity, at once,
of calling his coadjutors together to audience, and prepared the way for a confer as to the best means of estab- good collection. lishing new branches, and animating The Rev. John Watsford, who has old ones throughout their respective been a missionary in Fiji for eight districts. The ex-president and my- years, gave a most interesting, inself have communicated with every structive, and thrilling account of the superintendent minister in our two superstition, degradation, and cannidistricts. And we hope, with the balism there, and the almost miraculous substantial aid of our beloved col- triumph of Christianity over such leagues, to do good service to our bewildering and repulsive heathenism. noble Association. Bee-music in The effect on the congregation was swarming-time is exhilarating; but most powerful, as the venerable misgive me the hum of the honey-hunter sionary poured forth the strongest as he flits from the flower to the hive. facts with an eloquence of matter and We love to hear the carol of the con- manner, that few present had ever versation during our annual gather- heard surpassed, if equalled. ings, but the claim to such a privilege The Secretary (Mr. A. Humphreys) shall be proved by a continuous up- read the reportraising of the voice on behalf of our “In the Faversham Branch we aged brethren all the year round. have 12 benefit members and 12 Time is short! Our opportunities honorary members. - Benefit memare narrowing. Each Sub-Committee bers' subscription, £6 18s.; benefit will have to give account of its members' entrance fees, 10s.; honostewardship at the next annual meet- rary members' subscriptions, £12 ing. Brethren, be up and doing ! 10s. 6d.; other subscriptions, £3 9s.
Yours in the best of bonds, 6d.; public collections, £14 19s. 2d. Aylesbury.
John Rose. Total amount forwarded to the general
committee, £38 17s. 24d.--Amount FAVERSHAM, KENT.
paid to annuitants, £25 16s.; to sick,
£6 10s. Total received from general From The Mercury.
committee, £32 6s. Members on the The anniversary services in con- funds :-Superannuated, 2; sick, 1. nection with the Faversham Branch - Review of the eight years of the of the Association were held on Sun- existence of this branch;-Benefit day and Monday, September 16th and members' subscriptions, £58 195.; 17th. Sermons were preached on the honorary members' subscriptions, Sunday in the Wesleyan Chapels at £48 118. 2d.; other subscriptions, Faversham, Boughton, and Green- £35 Os. 6d, ; entrance fees, £28 6s. 6d.; street, by Messrs. G. C. Amphlett, J. collections in chapels, £86 15s. 11 d.; Rose, and M. L. Clapham, whose total, £256 178. 111d. Superannuadiscourses were instructive, practical, tion allowances, £148 149.; sick and impressive.
allowances, £34 15s; total, £175 The public meeting on Monday 98. There
256 branches of evening, held in Preston Street the Association ; in amount paid to Chapel, was presided over by the Rev. the general committee, Faversham C. H. Bishop, and addressed by the stands fourteenth, and in amount redeputation and the Rev. John Wats- ceived from general committee 29th. ford, of Melbourne, the Australian 66 The funds of this Association are. delegate to the Methodist (Ecumenical managed on the most economical and Conference, lately held in the Wesleyan humane principles, the cost of manageChapel, City Road, London.
ment being practically nothing (there Mr. Amphlett gave a good descrip- being only one paid agent), and the tion of the principles of the Association, grants to applicants for annuities and won the sympathy of the meeting being according to their necessities and in behalf of the sick and aged local not (in all cases) according to their depreachers, by many touching state- sires. Every benefit member, when ments and appeals.
sick, can claim the sick allowance ; but Mr. Rose, with a speech full of in order to become an annuitant posimetaphor and humour, delighted the tive necessity must be proved, and the