Imatges de pÓgina

of promiscuous enjoyment, from the toys of childhood, to the play-things of riper years.

The love, which is thus foolishly and lavishly bestowed,-which frustrates its own ends, and ruins its unhappy object, it may be remarked, is scarcely ever acknowledged, or returned; and, indeed, the order of nature and of Providence seems so thoroughly perverted by such conduct, that the parent is rendered by it more dependent on the child, than the child is on the parent.

I shall only exemplify the great truth expressed in the text, by noticing one subject more. The distinguished duty of Christian Charity, amiable and extensive as it is, and ought to be, requires, in practice, the application of that sober rule of divine wisdom, which would guard us equally against doing too little, and too much. On few occasions will it be found more necessary to add to our virtue knowledge;" or to attend to the precept of the apostle St. Jude, who says, "of some have compassion, making a difference." Unless we do

this, the lavish and indiscriminate alms of the charitable will often serve to encourage helplessness and sloth, pauperism and mendicity, with all its concomitant vices, instead of allevi


-wond zuo gw as ti a of thd viH sit M 93 ating the sufferings of virtue, relieving the temporary wants, or incidental ills of honest poverty, and enabling the industrious and welldisposed, by the blessing of God, to earn their daily bread, without being a permanent burden to their fellow-creatures.


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It should be remembered, also, as an inducement for us to be more vigilant and circumspect in the discharge of duty, within our respective parishes, that the public example of a man living from day to day, and year to year, on alms which he deserves not, or passing life away in a state of beggary and idleness, has the most mischievous effect on the principles and habits of the lower classes of the community. It paralyses the efforts of the industrious, and produces envyings and repinings among them;-it disheartens them amidst their daily labors, or renders them less careful of their character and conduct;-and, lastly, it is apt to teach many the ruinous lesson of living on chance, and depending on any thing for future subsistence but their own exertions.

In turning over the pages of Holy Scripture, let us endeavour, therefore, with reverence and humility, to learn what the measure of our duty is, both towards God and towards our neighbour, and then let us strive, by the gracious aids of

bro'll sull of gathe sition to pond si O 808 sili giubbo sili the Holy Spirit, to fulfil it as we ought. Knowing that we are surrounded with errors and infirmities of various kinds, let us humbly pray, How that our Almighty Father will be pleased to bestow on us some portion of that divine wisdom, which distinguished the holy apostles, and rit of which consisted, we read, not in "the spirit fear," meaning groundless, and superstitious fear; but of power, and of love, and of a མ་སྟོན་ sound mind." Then, while others wander to the right and left, losing themselves in the perplexing labyrinths of folly and of sin, we may be enabled to pursue that middle path, which will prove "the way of pleasantness and peace" in this present life, and may hereafter lead to the blessings of immortality, through the merits, mediation, and atonement of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

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MATT. V. 22.

But whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell-fire.

BEFORE we enter into any minute discussion of this apparently awful denunciation of our blessed Lord, it will be necessary to take a short view of the context. This chapter of St. Matthew's Gospel opens with the commencement of the divine Sermon, which was pronounced, it is supposed, on Mount Tabor, near Capernaum. Beside the beatitudes, as the verses beginning with "Blessed," are generally called, it contains many precepts of divine wisdom and love; some of which are calculated expressly to shew the superior sanctity and purity of the Holy Gospel, as well as the mildness of its sanctions, when contrasted with the laws of Moses.

In the progress of his discourse, our heavenly Redeemer, among other exhortations, was led to warn his hearers against the guilt and danger of causeless anger, threatening those who were addicted to it, with "the judgment;" that is, with the condemnation and punishment of the inferior Court of judicature, which was established in the different cities of Judea, and which consisted, in the whole, of three-andtwenty members; a small number of whom formed what we should call a quorum, and were permitted to act. If this disposition to anger, when mixed with pride and insolence, led a man to say to his brother, "Raca," which is a Syriac word expressive of insult and contempt, he was said to be "in danger of the council;" that is, of being arraigned before the Sanhedrim; the supreme Court of the Jews, which assembled only at Jerusalem; and, when full, consisted of seventy members.

But as Palestine was now become a province of the Roman empire, and had been governed by Roman Procurators for about twenty years, the Jews were deprived of all sovereign power,ji and were not permitted to inflict, on any cri-l minals, the punishment of death, as appears from

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