Grace, Mercy, and Peace, be to thee, my Son; and mayest thou prove the faithfulness of God as I have done.
HERE I am in old age, and yet not altogether barren. The cruse of oil has not failed, nor the barrel of meal wasted. The unction, and the three measures of meal, to which the kingdom of God is compared, still continue, namely, righteousness, peace, and joy; and the blessed Spirit works in all these, as the new and hallowed leaven, which shall ultimately work out all the old leaven of malice and wickedness. Times innumerable have I concluded that my spring was become dry, my stock exhausted, and that all things new were done with; no more bringing forth out of the treasure things new and old. Then the devil would set before me some of his burning and shining lights, and tell me what a blaze they made, what legions they drew after them, and how they withered; and what was I when compared to them? With this dry spring, and with these scare-birds, did the devil discourage and banter me for years. But I now believe they never had the fountain of life, and springing well, nor the streams that make glad the city of God.
They that are ingrafted into the good olive-tree partake of its goodness and fatness; and such do not bear the root, but the root bears them; they are anointed with fresh oil, and are called olive branches, or sons of oil. Seven golden pipes reach from these sons of oil to the golden candlestick. The first is preaching. God ministers the Spirit by the preaching of faith. 2. By praying: the apostles prayed for them, and they received the Holy Ghost. 3. By faithful reproof: "Let the righteous smite me, it shall be a kindness; let him reprove me, it shall be an excellent oil." 4. By exercising one's self in keeping a good conscience: "Let thy garments be always white, and let thy head lack no ointment." 5. By meditation: "In the multitude of my thoughts within me thy comforts delight my soul." 6. By the communion of saints: the brethren came to meet Paul at "Appii Forum and the Three Taverns; whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage," Acts xxviii. 15. 7. By epistolary correspondence: "And, when they had gathered the multitude together, they delivered the epistle; which when they � had read, they rejoiced for the consolation," Acts xv. 31. The golden oil, my son, has flowed' in all these seven pipes, though the olive branches and the main pipes were but two, as you may see in Zech. iv. 2 and 12. My son, fare thee well!
Yours most affectionately,
W. H. S. S.
God is still with the Doctor.