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the last of him whom she thought lost to her for ever; the affection which has made a wise man say, that as long as women and sorrow are left in the world, so long will the Gospel of our Lord Jesus live and conquer therein ; the affection which makes women round us every day ministering angels, wherever help or comfort are needed; which makes many a woman do deeds of unselfish goodness known only to God; not known even to herself; for she does them by instinct, by the inspiration of God's Spirit, without self-consciousness or pride, without knowing what noble things she is doing, without spoiling the beauty of her good work by even admitting to herself, · What a good work it is! How right she is in doing it! How much it will advance the salvation of her own soul !'— but thinking herself, perhaps, a very useless and paltry person; while the angels of God are claiming her as their sister and their peer.
Yes, if there is a woman in this congregation -and there is one, I will warrant, in every congregation in England – who is devoting herself for the good of others; giving up the joys of life to take care of orphans who have no legal claim on her; or to nurse a relation, who perhaps repays her with little but exacting peevishness; or who has spent all her savings, in bringing up her brothers, or in supporting her parents in their old age,—then let her read the story of Ruth, and be sure that, like Ruth, she will be repaid by the Lord. Her reward may not be the same as Ruth's : but it will be that which is best for her, and she shall in no wise lose her reward. If she has given up all for Christ, it shall be repaid her ten-fold in this life, and in the world to come life everlasting. If, with Ruth, she is true to the inspirations of God's Spirit, then, with Ruth, God will be true to her. Let her endure, for in due time she shall reap, if she faint not;-and to know that, is necessary for her salvation.
FRIENDSHIP; OR, DAVID AND JONATHAN.
II SAMUEL 1. 26.
I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan : very pleasant
hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.
DASSING the love of woman. That is a
hard saying. What love can pass that? Yet David doubtless spoke truth. He was a man who must have had reason enough to know what woman's love was like; and when he said that the love of Jonathan for him passed even that, he bestowed on his friend praise which will be immortal.
The name of Jonathan will remain for ever as the perfect pattern of friendship.
Let us think a little to-day over his noble character and his tragical history. It will surely do us good. If it does nothing but make us somewhat ashamed of ourselves, that is almost the best thing which can happen to us, or to any man.
We first hear of Jonathan as doing a very gallant deed. We might expect as much. It is only great-hearted men who can be true friends; mean and cowardly men can never know what friendship means.
The Israelites were hidden in thickets, and caves, and pits, for fear of the Philistines; when Jonathan was suddenly inspired to attack a Philistine garrison, under circumstances seemingly desperate. “And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armour-bearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were an half-acre of land, which a yoke of oxen might plough.
That is one of those little hints which shows that the story is true, written by a man who knew the place—who had probably been in the great battle of Beth-aven, which followed, and had perhaps ascended the rock where Jonathan had done his valiant deed, and had
seen the dead bodies lying as they had fallen before him and his armour-bearer.
Then follows the story of David's killing Goliath, and coming back to Saul with the giant's head in his hand, and answering modestly to him-'I am the son of thy servant - Jesse the Bethlehemite.'
And it came to pass, when he had made ' an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul ' of Jonathan was knit with the soul of · David, and Jonathan loved him as his own 'soul.
Then Jonathan and David made a cove'nant, because he loved him as his own soul.
And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, ' and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
He loved him as his own soul. And why? Because his soul was like the soul of David. Because he was modest, he loved David's modesty. Because he was brave, he loved David's courage. Because he was virtuous, he loved David's virtue. He saw that David was