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ledge, and the most attentive to the lips of wisdom; and as the prophet says, "the priest's lips should presërve knowledge, that inquiring souls may:seek the law at: his mouth'? Malachi ii. 7. Yet you know they are not capable of holding up an argument, or carrying on spiritual conversation, which is the point that you are insisting upon. --sia Cushi. = I would sooner be in company with “ a poor and a wise child than with an old and foolish king, who will na more be admonished,” Eccl. iv. 13. Our Saviour's company consisted altogether of such weaklings; and one half of the parables deft upon record were drawn from the mouth of the Saviour by simple inquiry. By theirtasking him questions they
drew water with joy out of that well of salvation, Isaiah xii. 3. or And I wish there was a little more of this in practice' in our days. Many young Christians would be useful to old ones, by stitring up the well-spring of life in them; and 'would, at the same time, find their own bowels refreshed, by the spiritual counsel, advice, or instructions, which themselves might draw. The established Christian, who has drunk into the Saviour's spirit, has a divine spring within him, which is often low, for want of thirsty babes to draw it out. The Lord has promised, that whosoever cometh unto him, and drinks, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water; if the weak' believer would grow, let him draw, John vii, 37, 38. The
And, on the other hand, an experienced minister, by being in company with young believers, and observing their questions and answers, gets a more satis, can get at an appointed church meeting, for which they have prepared themselves by premeditation, and are often abashed and confounded by an audience
Ahimaaz. It is a great blessing to 'a young Christian to have an experienced pastor to attend on in his doubtful state; for the impressions of God's laws on a sinner's heart are as difficult to read as the hand-writing on the wall of Belshazzar's palace. The king trembled when he saw the fingers that wrote, Dan. v. 5. And we tremble no less when we feel “ the hand-writing that is against us,” Col. ii. 14. And he, that becomes an interpreter, as Elihu was to Job, must have the Spirit of God in him; for it is " the inspiration of the Almighty that giveth them understanding,” Job xxxii. 8.
The queen of Babylon saw the need of this when she perceived the emptiness and ignorance of the astrologers and Chaldeans: “ There is a man,” said she, “ in thy kingdom; in whom is the spirit of the holy gods” (implying that the spirit of unholy devils was in the others] ; " and in the days of thy father light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, was found in him; whom the king, Nebuchadnezzar thy father, the king, I say, thy father, made master of the magicians, astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers; forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and shewing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Now let Daniel be called, and he will shew the interpretation, Dan. v. 11, 12
This woman has drawn a most excellent portrait of a minister of the Spirit; and, as she found the need of such a spirit in her husband's confusion, so many foolish virgins, who now call inspiration enthusiasm, will, in the great and terrible day of the Lord, call for the same inspiration: “Give us of your oil, for our lamps are gone out." Solomon calls the divine impressions of God's laws, made by the Spirit of God, deep waters.
Cushi. Yea, and when these deep waters are stirred by a spiritual conversation, they will spring up, and influence both the affections and the tongue of the speaker as they rise: “ Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out,” Prov. xx. 5. ' And, as these waters are drawn forth, so they refresh, strengthen, purify, and comfort, others that hear the conversation; as speaketh the wise man: “ The words of a man's mouth are as deep waters; and the well-spring of wisdom as a flowing brook," Prov. xviii. 4. An experimental believer has always something to say when young Christians ask him questions; for “The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips,” Prov. xvi. 23.
Ahimaaz. Indeed, my brother, I feel the blessed effects of what you assert on my own spirit, for I find my understanding much enlightened into the word of God, my heart is enlarged, my affections are warmed, my bowels are refreshed, and my judgment much established. For my part, I never met with so precious a.companion before. Such conversation leaves no guilt on the conscience; it does not send one home with a secret sting, as hath too often been the case
with me when I have left a company that had nothing to discourse about but worldly matters. I have felt the wretched effects of it afterwards in my closet, when I have come to face God in prayer: while, on the other hand, divine converse furnishes the mind with a suitable frame for prayer and praise: and I think this is Solomon's meaning when he says, man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth,” Prov. xii. 14. But what would some think of this conversation of ours? I believe it would appear mere nonsense to many of our learned Masters of Arts.
Cushi. As for a Master of Arts, it appears to me an arrogant title. Professor of Arts would sound much better; for there is a mystery in every art that has puzzled the best of them, and ever will. “Known unto God are all his works from the beginning.” He is the grand master of all; and in the strictest sense there is no other; because there are so many mysteries in every art that they are not masters of. Hence I have often thought that A. M. and M. A. have stood for two lies. The best art is divinity; and I believe this is one of the last that many young students are pút to the study of. They must be filled with heathenism first; and, if God calls them by grace, their heathen stock serves for fuel, into which the devil often throws his darts, by tempting them to Atheism and Deism. The man that knows God, and himself, is the happiest, the wisest, the most useful, and always will appear the brightest, character in the world : for it is said that the king of Babylon communed with such,“ and among them all was found none like Daniel, Hananiah, Michael, and Azariah; therefore
stood they, before the king: and in all matters of wisdom and understanding that the king required of them he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm,” Dan. ii. 19, 20.
The best botanist in the world is the man that can give the most saving description of the tree of life, that blessed plant of renown, Ezek. xxxiv. 29. Job tells you the root of it was found in him, Job xix: 28. Paul says, the wild Gentiles were graffed into it, and partook of its fatness, Rom. xi. 19. John says, the leaves of it are for the healing of the nations.-- Compare Rev. xxii. 2 with Isaiah liii. 5. Ezekiel tells us, “ the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine,”: Ezek. xlvii. 12; and the spouse tells us its branches are for a shadow, Song ii. 3. The Lord favour you and me with an heartfelt union with this tree, then shall our leaf never wither, nor shall we cease from yielding fruit: “ He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit; for without me ye can do nothing."
Indeed the Christian has something to do with various arts. He is an astronomer when he has found out the bright and morning star, (Rev. xxii. 16) and sensibly felt it rise in his heart, 2 Pet. i. 19. This blessed light is succeeded by the heat of the Sun of Righteousness shining on the soul with healing in his beams, Mal. iv. 2. The best star that ever the eastern sages
found was that which led them to Bethlehem, where the Star of Jacob lay, Numb. xxiv. 17. We may say the same of all other arts. God make us such'navigators as shall gain the haven of ever