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nothing, what does it amount to but that he has reached within a span of the end of sin and sorrow, of care and toil?—that his earthly education for his heavenly state is about being finished, and that in a few more months or years he will cease to be a child, and will possess all the strength and knowledge of a man? Be it that the aged Christian shrinks, as nature will shrink, from the grave, and what men call the unknown future, let him remember that Christ hath abolished death, and brought life and incorruption to light; that the future is no longer unknown, the veil having been taken away by Christ; that, whatever may be his own helplessness in the hour of the dread transition from time into eternity, he will hear a voice, well known and loved, saying, "Fear not, for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God."

Let the aged Christian accustom himself to meditate on these truths and hopes, and promises of the gospel, until each of them shall be as habitually present and familiar to him as the countenance of his dearest friend, and he may expect to enjoy an elevation and a cheerfulness which will triumph over the labour and sorrow of his fourscore years. Or, if there be physical causes operating involuntarily and irresistibly to depress him, he will still find that the

grace of the gospel does not leave itself without a witness in this assurance: "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth their frame; he remembereth that they are dust."

There is a third thing which must be kept in view to make it sure that our old age shall be characterized by the fruitfulness and beauty of the palm tree. And it is something that concerns the young rather than the old. Whatsoever that is which we should like to be when we are old-whatsoever grace or virtue we are pleased with when we see it in others, or should like others to see in us-we must cultivate habitually all the days of our life. No sudden effort, no convulsive struggle will make us at a bound what we ought to be. Most good things are of slow growth, need much culture, and are ripened only by time. If we would have our age distinguished by patience, gentleness, lovingness, consideration towards others, and by an all-pervading faith in God, we must seek to attain these excellences in the season of health and of early life. If we are self-indulgent, self-seeking, imperious, fretful, distrustful of God throughout life, much more shall we be all this when the feebleness of age has diminished our self-control.

We are often surprised by a manifestation of un

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lovely tempers on the part of aged Christians. These are the results of the former want of care in spiritual culture, and obtrude themselves so painfully on those whose duty it is to nurse the aged, that observers are perplexed, and do not know how to interpret what is so unseemly in persons who are supposed to be maturing for a higher state. What a joy it is on the other hand, to see the excellences which have been conscientiously cultivated by the Christian all his life long shining brightly, and with all the freedom and spontaneousness of a second nature, in the aged! The submission to God, the grateful recognition of his hand in every gift and mercy, the holy patience, the loving self-forgetfulness, the desire to be useful to others, these bear witness to the rich grace of God in converting the autumn of decay into a scene of spiritual beauty. Thus, but thus only, may the aged become like the palm tree, and realize the Psalmist's description.

Christian's Diew of Eternity.*


I'm but a weary pilgrim here,
Life's varied griefs sustaining;
The ills I feel, and those I fear,
Would tempt me to complaining:
But, Lord, the hopes of joys above
The pains of pilgrimage remove,

Or give me strength to bear them.

Oft in the silence of the night
My soul her griefs is sighing;
And morn, with its returning light,
No respite is supplying:

One gleam of heaven relief bestows;
That home of rest no sorrow knows,
But joy reigns there for ever.

And when the future gives alarm
Of evils to oppress me;

* Translated by Dr. Mills.

And anxious fears of coming harm

Thick gather to distress me; Eternity makes time so small, Its fleeting fears and sorrows all No longer raise my terror.

When Death, so dreaded from afar,
Comes nigh, my days to number,
That, free from every earthly care,
My head may sink in slumber,
That peace and joy may banish fear,
Let then eternity appear,

With views of future glory.

Hope, Lord, makes every burden light,
Its strength from thee it borrows;
That glory-fit me for its sight,
By all my pilgrim sorrows!
May it in death my doubts dismiss,
And form my endless store of bliss
With thee, in life eternal!

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