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the end of the letter, which may be torn off and presented to the clergyman if necessary. I may say to you, that in accepting this office, I feel the duty and responsibility which attach to it. I feel myself drawn to your dear infant by a relation more tender and more important than that which nature has created; and pray that, if both of us be preserved, every influence which I may bring to bear upon him in future life may conduce to the great interests of his imperishable soul. I feel the utmost gratitude to the kind Father of all for the comforts of your life, and pray for the increase and continuance of His mercies. O let us connect every joy with the hand of the Giver; and in the manifold blessings which he scatters around the path of this world's journey, may we never forget that it is a journey, and must have a termination. I enter, my dear Jane, into all your sensations, and figure your domestic comforts; and whether it be your respectable husband, your smiling infant, your affectionate relatives, your secure competency, and, above all, your growing sense of God, and of His merciful and reconciled countenance, I can see a thousand reasons for gratitude to Him who makes all and who gives all. It is delightful to think of the largeness of His liberality. We give way to dark and narrow suspicions as to the extent of His kindness; but, to use a Bible phrase, it is not He that is straitened as to us, it is we that are straitened as to Him. He will perfect the good work that is begun in us; He is not unfaithful. I ask this simple question-Did you ever, or do you now, annex a feeling of comfort and security to the idea. of Christ and of His salvation? What is this but having fellowship with Christ? It is holding communion with Him in the most characteristic of all his capacities-the capacity of your Saviour. Now, mark the promise that is given to such fellowship: God is not unfaithful who hath called us to the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. For our comfort

He pledges His fidelity; and as sure as God is true, and His promises are unfailing, all who trust in the Saviour may look up for the fulfilment of this large and liberal assurance: He gave His own Son for us; how much more shall He not with Him freely give us all things? I feel that matrimony brings a very large accession of deep and serious and tender feeling along with it. I am sure that I would not have had half the interest in your family without my wife that I now have with one. I have been supremely fortunate in being allied with the mildest and gentlest and most sweetly accommodating of women, who takes a large interest in my professional business, and is, I hope, under those saving and salutary influences which I pray may be imparted to all, and at last bring us all together in perfect blessedness to the throne of God."

February 15th, 1813.-I know not a more serious drawback to mixed society than the exclusion of all conversation about the one thing needful; and it comes to be a serious question, How are you to get the better of it ?—Are you to lift your testimony against it? This zeal would prompt; but we are also called to walk in wisdom towards those that are without. There must be a way of introducing the topic, so as to make a useful impression, so as to conciliate prejudice, so as to win if possible rather than repel. I confess it is to me a thing beset with many difficulties, and I fear that an unmanly shame may have some share in it. It is certainly wrong to disguise it from others that you look upon eternity as your uppermost concern. Disguise this, and you add the sanction of your example to their exclusive indulgence in the frivolities of time -you add to the multitude of stumblingblocks or offences which lie in the way of others. It is delightful that there is a promise annexed to the prayer for wisdom; and I know not a more delicate subject for the application of wisdom than the


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one I am now insisting on. I look upon the exercise of writing to you as a mighty relief from that unvaried tone of secularity and alienation from God which prevails in the world; and it would give me the truest pleasure to understand that you are rising in your sense of the importance of eternity, and that peace and joy mingle in your contemplations. For this purpose, let me advise you to look to the Saviour. Some people perplex themselves by looking too much inwards. It is clear that the object to be looked at is out of us, and that it is by fastening our contemplations on Him who was lifted up for the sins of the world that we are saved. I like the determined style of faith which I have found in English writers. One of them says, 'If I am to perish, let me perish here'— meaning at the foot of that Cross on which his eyes are fastened. I have heard a fine observation by a divine of our day upon this subject. He says, that those of the children of Israel who looked to the brazen serpent may not all have had a very distinct and positive conviction that they were to be cured by so doing; still, however, they lifted up their eyes, and were healed. The very act of lifting up their eyes implied a certain degree of expectation, and, slender as it was, it gave rise to an act which landed in their recovery from the serpents' bite. Now, some perplex themselves with inquiring into the degree of their faith, and summon up a number of questions which are very difficult, and sometimes insoluble. Now, though you cannot look into your own heart, and find there such a degree of faith as satisfies, you may look out of you unto Jesus. The very act of so looking implies some hope, some faith; and as all who looked unto the brazen serpent were healed, so all who look unto Jesus shall be saved. Their faith may not be so lively, so distinct, so intense in degree as they expected, still there is some degree of it implied in the very act of looking. It may be small, but think of the promise

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annexed to that faith which was so very small that it was compared to a grain of mustard-seed: Look unto me,' says He, all ye ends of the earth, and be saved.' And the salvation is not put off till the time when you shall go in person to heaven. It is begun on earth; and as it consisteth in salvation from the power of sin as well as from its punishment, be assured that from the first moment of your looking unto the Saviour, He begins the good work of carrying on your redemption, redeeming you from all your iniquities, (Titus ii. 14,) giving you a measure of His Spirit, (John vii. 39; iv. 14,) conforming you to His image, (2 Cor. iii. 18,) carrying you on from one degree of grace unto another, till you arrive at a complete obedience to the will of God. Cast your care upon Him, and He is pledged to do all this. He is able to do it all, and Christ will be made unto you wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption."

The letter from which the following extract is taken was addressed to his sister Helen, afterwards married to the Rev. Mr. Maclellan, minister of Kelton, who had accompanied her sister to England, and was now living at Heelbridge :—

"KIEMANY MANSE, May 24, 1818.

"JANE knows the usual appropriation of my last page, and it is a subject of too much importance to be omitted at any time; nor do I know a happier change that a human soul can undergo than to pass from a state of indifference about religion to the feeling of it as the main concern of existence. There is a text of Scripture highly applicable to the great majority of those who think that, upon the strength of a few established decencies, which bring them to a par with their neighbours around them, all will go well and comfortably enough with them. Jeremiah viii. 11, 'For they have healed the hurt of

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the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace, when there is no peace.' They do not see the necessity of making religion that very earnest and particular thing which every true Christian will make it. They go very slightly to work in the business of healing the hurt of their souls, and feel a peace in the superficial remedy of forms, and decency, and a fair average of character and reputation in their neighbourhood;—all the while the heart may remain as alienated from God as ever, the love of Him be as unfelt as before, the high standard of Christian obedience be never thought of or aspired after, and, above all, the great Physician, who alone can heal the hurt to the very bottom, be neither repaired to nor rested on. This is slight work, yet it is all that is done by the vast majority of professing Christians, and it satisfies them. The atonement of the Cross is the only sufficient and authorized remedy for sin, and all are invited to lay hold of it. Some seek for the ground of peace in themselves, and they either take up with a deceitful remedy, or, not finding what they want, give themselves up to the agony of anxious helplessness. The right way is to look unto Jesus as lifted up for sin; and we have His own authority for saying that whosoever so looketh shall be saved-saved from sin in all its malignity-saved not merely from its condemnation, but its power-redeemed from its curse, (Gal. iii. 13,) and redeemed from its dominion, (Rom. vi. 14,) so that by the operation of this alone remedy, we are washed, and sanctified, and justified in the name of our Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Cor. vi. 11.) This is a decisive remedy. There is no slightness, no feebleness in such an application as this. It goes farther than to the reformation of a few points; it is something more than a slight covering of outward decency ; it reaches the very heart, and accomplishes a change so thorough and decisive, that the New Testament represents it by being born again, (John iii. 3,) by being transformed by the re

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