A Divine Poem of the Shunamite.
ADDRESSED TO A FRIEND.
A Clownish Poem on the Shunamite,
A sinner call'd to be the Lord's delight;
By the despised William Huntington,
Both known and trusted now in Paddington.
To Mistress SANGSTER, now at Number Eight,
'Tis by the New St. Luke's that's built of late,
At Old-street-end you'll find the Dame's abode,
In Winkworth's-buildings, on the City-road.
I HOPE, dear Madam, you will not be vex'd,
Because you find your name to this affix'd;
'Tis sent by ay of grateful recompense,
But not design'd to give the least offence.
I trust your name is in the book of life;
Nor have I us'd it here to gender strife
Take not this freedom in the least unkind,
The poem's sent to entertain your mind.
The subject matter is a work of grace,
Which on a saint in days of old took place;
The sex - a woman, and her statute great;
And to her sex these lines I dedicate.
PREMISED INQUIRY, AND CAUTION.
But if you ask what I might have in view,
And why I send this poem first to you;
Or how I came to frame theso whims of mine,
And puzzle you, from first to last, with rhyme.
Some people's heads are like a hive of bees,
Whose brood sent forth, the women ring to please.
When Jesus shines, the heart with love gets warm,
'Tis then the head with thoughts begins to swarm.
Methinks, you prize an old prolific hive,
And wish their young may both increase and thrive;
You'd have the stocks be neither weak nor few,
But would not wish a swarm rung down to you.
A lion slain was once a hive for bees,
Against his ribs they built their cells with ease;
The mighty Saint, that slew the brute in ire,
Soon after found an entertainment there.
That beast proclaims my former state of mind,
In which I roar'd against an Arm Divine;
God slew the brute, and sent the honey too,
Or else this swarm had never fled to you.
'Tis by your means this work is brought about,
You shook the stand, and then the swarm went out;
At this my fault you must in love connive,
And mind in future how you move the hive.
'TWAS On a certain day I went from home,
As hawking pedlars are so apt to roam;
When I return'd the time was rather late,
My wife inform'd me what I now repeat.
She said - Here's been a vehicle to day,
And close by us the driver made a stay:
A little cart, drove by a little lass,
Who at our house pull'd in, and stopp'd the ass.
She straightly ask'd - If HUNTINGTON liv'd here,
But would not tell from whence she came, nor where;
She fetch'd this weighty burden to my door,
And then return'd the way she came before"
We held a council, but could not devise
Who was the benefactor in disguise;
At last 'twas settl'd, if conjecture's true,
The lot we cast - the sentence fell to you.
The little equipage of cart and ass
Was something like what Shunem brought to pass
If wrong conjectur'd, take it not amiss;
To tell the truth - my poem sprung from this.
My frothy head has often fell to rhyme,
The work I stifl'd for the want of time -
Till Friday last appeared a leisure day,
In which I thougdt to send this swarm away.
I meant, at first, to send my thoughts to you,
And not expose the same to public view;
I only meant to send an homely fare,
And, with yourself, your other-self a share.
But so it fell, when I began to write,
That heart and head brought many things to light,
Much more than I at first purpos'd to send,
For I at night had thirty verses penn'd.
I found my mind entangl'd in a strait,
How I should send this burden'd vessel's freight.
And when constrain'd some other way to seek.
'Twas fix'd to write, and send it once a week.
Again, I thought a month might turn about
Before I got this springing matter out,
While you, from day to day, might long to see
The next epistle that might come from me.
At last, I thought I'd send it from the press,
But send my pious friend the first address;
And after that, expose the whole to view,
That others might be fed as well as you.
Thus I contriv'd, and fix'd the scheme at last,
And now present you with this strange repast
Accept my present, let it not displease;
Be thou enlarg'd, and hive this swarm of bees.
Methinks you aim'd to have your gift conceal'd
And not in public print to be reveal'd;
But women's pleas to men's replies give place -
A priest may speak where they must hold their peace,
Give my respects to your superior lord,
As you and him in things divine accord;
If entertain'd with what I send to thee,
I hope, in turn, you'll send a line to me.
Forget me not when both engag'd in pray'r,
A prodigal return'd should have a share
(God well approves of charity divine),
And you, in turn, shall have a share in mine.
A DIVINE POEM ON THE SHUNAMITE.
The chosen race, while in their native state,
And still preserv'd, in Christ, to life, by fate;
Jehovah's eye their various steps surveys,
And lends his sacred aid through all their ways.
The distant spot, the time, the means decreed,
When they shall hear, and choose the promis'd seed;
Their future husband's will shall be reveal'd,
And they to love shall sweet subjection yield.
A pious matrons o the days of old,
A sheep appointed for the Shepherd's fold,
A woman great, the chosen Shunamite,
Decreed, by fate, to be the Lord's delight.
A prophet grave, upon a certain day,
By God's appointment was to pass that way;
Her feet were guided with this saint to meet,
And she constrain'd the man of God to eat.
The rev'rend sire with her request complies:
When God inclines, what servant e'er denies?
She ey'd her guest - his conversation heard,
And, as she thought, some rays divine appear'd.
She heard the blesssing crav'd upon his food:
Observ'd his grave deport and heavenly mood;
With jealous eye his blissful state admir'd;
To know his God her teeming thoughts aspir'd.
The time's arriv'd - the prophet must depart;
Her guest she loses, and she's lost her heart;
His bened'mtion fastens on her mind,
The man is gone, the master stays behind
His word she ponders, and his word construes,
And for a second visit often sues;
The great Jehovah hers her mental pray'r,
And moves his saint to pay His visits there.
Her teeming mind no longer holds its own,
She to her husband makes the matter known;
What she observ'd and heard she'll now declare,
That he, her other-self, might have a share.
Behold, says she, the things that I perceive,
And with compliance my advice receive;
Our transient guest, who Shunem's path has trod,
Is, I perceive, an holy man of God.
I find his stated circuit lies this road,
And I'm inclin'd to build him some abode;
Let us, I pray, a little chamber make,
Receive this servant for his Masters sake.
I've plann'd the building, furniture, and a11,
And think to fis it on that vacant wall;
I'll set a table, cadlestick, and bed,
That he may have whereon to lay his head.
And it shall be, whene'er he comes this way,
That I'll invite him oftentimes to stay;
In times of darkness, or inclement weather,
I'll importune, and make him turn in thither.
We'll entertain him, and we'll lodge him too,
For who can tell what God For us may do?
Observe his converse, and his words attend,
And we shall both be gainers in the end.
My mind's impress'd to make this preparation,
And I predict he'll use the habitation
Grant my request - I'll own the impulse vain,
If his kind Master sends him not again.
The scheme's approv'd; the chamber's quickly rear'd,
And when 'twas furnish'd then the sire appear'd;
Or, so it fell, that on a certain day,
The Lord directed him once more that was.
The pious dame beholds the prophet come,
And with entreaties kindly ask'd him home;
She treats the man - he entertains her mind,
She sows her carnal things, and reaps divine.
They spend their eve, and then conclude with pray'r,
The prophet sues to leave a blessing there;
The time arrives that nature calls for rest,
And to the room prepar'd she leads her guest.
The saint he follow'd where the matron led,
Survey'd the chamber, furniture, and bed,
Admir'd her quick dispatch and tender care,
And wonders much why she should want him there.
The prophet ponders on the mystic scene,
And wants to know what she by this can mean,
And why her lib'ral heart should freely teem
So many favours, unimplor'd by him.
My Master's hand is in this woman's scheme,
For pious acts like these must flow from him;
Shall then Jehovah's saint find food and bed,
While such a lib'ral host goes unrepay'd?
Shall servants travel at their Master's charge?
And will not God reward where he enlarge?
I'm entertain'd for my great Master's sake,
And 'tis more bless'd to give than 'tis to take.
I'll have her brought, to see what views she hath,
For I suspect this chamber's built in faith;
I'il find the bottom ere I sleep to night -
Gehazi, go, and call this Shunamite;
And when she's come do thou accost her thus
What shall reward thy tender care for us?
I do approve thy kindness done to me,
And now demand what shall be done for thee.
I wish to know from whence thy motives spring,
Wilt thou that I commend thee to the king?
Or halt thou friends that would desire a post,
To act beneath the captain of the host?
I wish no friend of mine with blood to sport,
Nor do I crave the pleasures of a court;
In earthly pomp let those that choose excel,
With my own people I'm content to dwell.
She gave her answer, and she then withdrew,
And left the prophet, that he might construe
Her pious meaning, and her good intent,
That no sinister ends were ever meant.
The prophet wonders at her strange reply,
But can't as yet unfold the mystery;
He eyes the room, he turns his thoughts about,
And is resolv'd to find this riddle out.
He says - Gehazi, see this woman's care,
And tell me now what I shall do for her;
I do suspect a work of grace begun,
What's done to me, is to my Master done.
Gehazi answer'd - she's a barren styl'd,
For I have heard she never bore a child;
Her other-self to nature's charms is cold,
She can't expect a seed, her husband's old.
A barren womb! - her soul is barren too,
No fruit divine, unless Jehovah woo:
Sarah and Hannah - both their wombs were dead
And yet by faith they both conceiv'd and bred.
I much suspect a work of faith begun,
To strengthen which, I will predict a son;
The word may serve her feeble faith to lead
To Isra'l's hope the promis'd woman's seed.
The pregnant promise, God to Sarah gave,
Stands good to all who in the Lord believe;
Upon this word a thousand hopes have stood,
Which I'll repeat, and God shall make it good.
'The Word and Spirit God reveals to men,
Is that by which the saints are born again;
God now shall speak his own immortal word,
And she by mystic birth shall know the Lord.
The prophet now construes the matter plain,
And bids his servant call her up again;
Her reputation she shall now redeem,
And nourish faith her barren womb shall teem.
The servant calls her to the prophet's door,
Or somewhat closer than she stood before,
And said - next season, by the rules of life.
Thou shalt appear the mother and the wife.
She answer'd - Nay, my lord, thou man of God,
If barrens bear, the world will think it odd;
Soothe not thins handmaid in a false disguise,
Nor dare deceive, thou man of God, with lies.
Thus unbelief appears with brazen brow,
And contradicts the rev'rend prophet's vow;
The sire's amaz'd, no promise he'll renew,
But goes to bed - the Shunamite withdrew.
Shall unbelief thus triumph over faith,
And give the lie to what Jehovah saith?
Shall bold corruption spew her harden'd face
And counterveil the promises of grace?
Shall carnal reason mount the judgment seat,
Her husband's age with various pleas repeat?
Nay, give assent, believe the rev'rend sire,
Let God be true, but every man a liar.
The prophet left her in her unbelief,
Nor was the matron plunder'd by the thief;
The word took hold, the barren shall conceive,
God will be faithful, though we don't believe.
The prophet knew the promise would preveil,
What God himself declares can never fail;
But views her bold reply with such disdain,
She must invite him ere he comes again.
Her womb prolific, proves her undeceiv'd;
Her time's appointed, and she then conceiv'd;
Her faith shall triumph in her pregnant womb,
And in her heart she finds a Saviour come.
She sets her seal, and owns Jehovah true,
His mystic work to wondrous ends construe;
God's banner now to faith appears unfurl'd,
And faith itself to overcome the world.
She ponder'd o'er how all was brought about,
And bless'd the day she found the prophet out.
Her former thoughts appear with marks divine,
And like a prophecy fulfill'd in fine.
With joys divine she wants the hour to come,
For sure her mind's as pregnant as her womb;
The time's arriv'd, her nine months' race is run,
The contradicting handmaid bears a son.
Her soul is now inflam'd with love divine,
Bold unbelief is banish'd from her mind;
She eyes the distant Saviour long decreed,
And in the type beholds the woman's seed.
The son from day to day in stature grows,
So her affections to her Saviour flows;
In days like these we too securely stand,
And seldom dream of troubles hard at hand.
No pleasing frames like these unmix'd abide,
Her thriving faith must now again be try'd;
Or it shall fall, that on a certain day,
The Lord that gave will surely take away.
For so it fell, that when the child was grown,
He'll see them reap the crop his sire had sown;
God smites the child, the child is seiz'd with dread,
And to his father cries, My head, my head.
The father bids a lad, his servant, come,
And orders him to take the darling home
Convey him safe, of falt'ring steps beware,
Commit the infant to his mother's care.
The tender mother plac'd him on her knees,
With tears bewails his violent disease;
Requests the infant's life, but that's deny'd;
She holds him up till noon, and there he dy'd.
Is this the blessing unimplor'd bestow'd?
Is this the great reward the saint avow'd?
Shall all my kindness be rewarded so?
And am I doom'd to weep a mother's woe?
Did I this infant of the prophet crave?
Nay - I deny'd when he so freely gave;
I bid the prophet not deceive with guile,
I did not ask, nor yet expect a child.
And has the man of God his room forsook.
And on my grief does he disdain to look?
Since he the chamber has forsook and fled.
I'll lay the corpse where he himself has laid.
Had I implor'd this son, I'd been content;
On anxious cares the rod is ofen sent;
But I refus'd the offer when'twas made,
Yet I'm entangl'd, and the prophet's fled.
But who can tell what God may farther do?
His hand's divine, his promises are true;
Why should a resurrection strangely seem?
The word that bid me bear may quicken him.
It was a promise quicken'd first my womb,
And by a promise shall my Saviour come;
And I conceive, as far as faith can pry,
That in this child I've seen my Saviour die.
Die Jesus must! or else my hope is vain,
Nor can he save unless he rise again;
Cheer up, my soul! expect this strange surprise,
For in my son I'll see my Saviour rise.
My faith in this is far from void of doubt,
The prophet knows, and I will find him out;
I'll make him come where he has lodg'd before
She puts the corpse to bed, and shuts the door.
Thus big with hopes of what shall come to pass,
She bids her husbaned send the man and ass;
I'll ride to Carmel, it shall not be vain,
I'll see the man of God, and come again.
The steady husband disapproves her haste
(Time spent in harvest must be spent in waste);
He bids his dame her nasty tour delay
Till the new moon, or else thee Sabbath-day.
In faith she's mounted, and in faith she'll ride,
When dame's in haste she scorns to be deny'd;
Her present thoughts she now delays to tell,
Send me the man and ass, it shall be well.
The yielding husband urges no reply,
Obeys her voice without a reason why;
'Tis vain to parley if her mind is bent,
She gave command - the retinue is sent.
She brings the saddle, and equips the ass.
And bids her servant ride the swiftest pace;
Go forward, drive, nor dare to slack thy hand,
Nor slack thy pace, except I give command.
The trusty man obeys the matron's will.
And ends his stage on Carmel's sacred hill;
God sent the prophet, to behold afar
The weeping mother in the hasty car.
The man of God appears in some affright,
And says - Gehazi, see that Shunamite;
Go now, I pray, and search her welfare out,
Her hasty visit fills my mind with doubt.
Say now unto her - Is it well with thee?
Thy husband also, tell me, how is he?
And if she answers, as I hope she will,
Then kindly ask her if the child is well.
Her errand to the man she'll not declare,
As ahe could never see God's image there;
She answers well, and to the prophet ran,
She wants the master's aid, but not the man.
The pious prophet and the mother meet,
While she arrests, and holds him by the feet;
The servant comes to thrust the dame away,
The prophet awes his violence to stay.
The surly servant lets the dame alone,
And she's too full of grief to make it known;
He says - she's vex'd, this I plainly see,
But God has hid her grievous case from me.
The troubled mother breathes her honest plea -
Did I, my lord, intreat a son of thee?
Yea, I deny'd when thou the promise gave,
I bid thee then beware and not deceive.
The prophet's mind is now reliev'd from doubt,
By this he finds the matron's trouble out:
No wonder sorrow bows her drooping head,
When God has struck the promis'd infant dead.
The man of God admires her faith divine,
Nor dares to raise a doubt upon leer mind;
As she believ'd the child should rise again,
He takes the work in hand - and not in vain.
Thrice happy soul! that's bless'd with such a grace,
A pow'r that death itself can ne'er outface;
Saint Paul observes, this woman conquer'd death,
'Tis left recorded in the acts of faith.
Elisha bids Gehazi come in haste,
Gird up thy loins, and run the swiftest pace;
Prepare to go, and take my staff in hand,
Nor dare salute the complimenting man.
When servants go with messages divine,
They claim the whole attention of the mind;
If any force their salutations vain,
Obey my voice, salute them not again.
Make haste to Shunem, enter there my room,
Behold the dead, the fallen mortal's doom
Behold the corpse is lying in my place,
Lay thou my staff upon the infant's face.
In heart she vow'd he should not serve her so,
'Twas thou at first occasion'd all my woe,
Thou shalt not thus deceive the Shunamite,
Nor send me off with such an hypocrite.
Deceive me not, fur I am fully bent,
Thyself shall go, the sender, not the sent;
By God that lives I'll make thee walk with me,
And as thy spirit lives I'll not leave thee.
The woman urges, and the prophet yields,
No ifs nor buts, in positives she deals;
The prophet rose, the woman leads the van,
And both pursue the path the servant ran.
Gehazi steps with hasty strides before,
To gain applause, he aims at nothing more;
His vain attempts may make the woman laugh,
She knew his faith was in his master's staff.
He lays the stick upon the baby's face,
And hopes to fix it on the proper place;
His slight of hand proclaims his sad mistake,
He comes, and cries, the child is not awake.
This cry confirm'd the troubled Shunamite,
She saw her judgment of the man was right;
And wonders much how he could try the scheme,
And why the prophet should be plagu'd with him,
Thus hypocrites appear in false disguise,
And think they vail the wisdom of the wise;
He fawns and feigns, but still engenders doubt;
The babe in grace will feel the serpent out.
They learn the actions of the righteous saint,
And wear the garb as harlots wear their paint;
But if they preach, or if they join in pray'r,
Do what they will, the serpent will appear.
So he attempts to raise the infant dead,
But looks no higher than the staff he laid;
The mother hates the mimic's vain appearing,
And he cries out, there's neither voice nor hearing.
The rev'rend sire attains his journey's end,
Where to the room she built she leads her friend;
The prophet sees his long deserted bed,
And in his place he finds the infant dead.
He's mov'd to feel the weeping mother's grief,
His soul's engag'd to bring her some relief;
He seems confirm'd the child shall rise again,
The door he closes on the praying twain.
The fervent prophet calls upon the Lord,
And begs the soul he took might be restor'd;
Then he returns, and travels to and fro,
To watch if God would send it back or no.
He goes again, and lays upon the child,
His mind is agitated all the while;
He grasps his hands, he meets his mouth and eyes,
While faith commands, and bids the dead arise.
What faith demands Jehovah will perform,
The prophet feels the corpse is getting warm;
He then return'd, and to the house he went,
The pensive mother waits the strange event.
Again the prophet to the chamber goes,
And on the corpse himself again he throws;
He still expects to bring the dead to life,
But finds a cope with death a stubborn strife.
At last the infant seven times it sneez'd,
The prophet heard it, and his mind was eas'd;
He looks again, and sees the dead arise,
The sleeping corpse had open'd both his eyes.
The man of God beholds it with delight,
And bids his servant call the Shunamite;
With pregnant hope she to the chamber run,
The prophet points, and bids her take her son.
She sees the babe, and on the ground she fell
(The triumphs gain'd by grace are hard to tell)
Her unbelief must now again retreat;
Her soul's surrender'd at the prophet's feet.
She rises up, and to the infant goes,
Whose sad departure caused all her woes;
With joy and grief her tender bowels yearn,
While love to God begins afresh to barn.
Like one bewilder'd, or in pensive thought,
She takes the infant back the prophet brought;
With warm affections, and with thoughts devout,
She hugs the darling, and conveys him out.
Such souls as these the great Jehovah law'd,
By such he spreads his wondrous fame abroad;
While future saints, who in such paths have trod,
Admire the mystic ways that lead to God.
In this we see how each event agreed,
To lead the matron to the promis'd seed;
Both centric and eccentric wheels conspire,
And each in motion rais'd her faith the higher.
First God directs the prophet's wand'ring feet,
And she with him promiscuously shall meet;
Her mind's impell'd to entertain the man,
And this shall bring to tight the mystic plan.
She must attend the prophet's words divine,
While God impress'd them on the woman's mind;
The prophet goes at his appointed hour,
But not the word, nor the impulsive pow'r.
She meditates to find his meaning out,
And wish'd a second visit brought about;
The ear of God attends to her complaint,
To strengthen faith, again he sends the saint.
By this encouragement she's led to pray,
And now believes he'll often come that way;
She builds a room to entertain the sire,
And arms to catch the prophet's glowing fire.
Like pious Jacob, with his peeled rod,
Stuck in the gutters where the flocks had trod,
While in a dream he sees the horned sire
Beget the spotted and the spangled hire;
So she contrives to fix this little trap,
And caught the lot of wisdom in her lap;
The prophet comes, approves her tender care,
Predicts and promises a blessing there.
He speaks the word - 'tis God's immortal seed,
To help her faith, her barren womb shall breed;
The time arrives - she brings the infant forth,
By which she sees her Saviour's future birth.
In time she's led to see redemption's plan,
The way in which the Lord would ransom man;
God smites the child, her growing faith to try,
While in the type faith sees her Saviour die.
In deep distress to Carmel she'll repair;
The wand'ring prophet is directed there;
His sympathetic soul must feel her grief,
While faith shall prompt to seek divine relief.
Upon his knees he heav'n itself assails,
That she might see how faith with God preveils;
He then parades, and eyes Jehovah's hand,
To watch and pray is a divine command.
God never bade his servants seek in vain,
He craves a soul departed back again;
God hears his cry, the soul returns to prison,
The joyful mother sees a Saviour risen.
She now believes what Sadducees deny'd,
The glorious truth which Deists now deride;
She's well confirm'd that God can raise the dead,
He's rais'd her son, and rais'd her drooping head.
Her hope prolific teems with joys to come,
She sends her thoughts to meet the genial doom;
In hope divine my flesh to dust shall go,
God rais'd my son - he'll raise the mother too.
A LETTER TO MR. SANGSTER,
No. 8, Winkworth's-buildings, Old-street, City-road.
If my heart was as steady in its motions as the husband of the Shunamite, who could trust every event till the new moon or Sabbath day, I had deferred sending this present till the beginning of months, or New-year's-day, at which season presents and compliments are much in fashion; then it might have served for a New-year's gift; but our blessed Apostle lays no stone on a springing well, nor fetters the tongue that is seasoned with grace, though it be as full of motion as the hand of a ready writer. He tells us to be always abounding in the work of the Lord, and to be instant in season and out of season; and I believe entertaining the minds of God's people, and keeping their thoughts employed about heavenly things, is a work of the Lord.
If the Paschal lamb was too big for an Israelitish family, the master was to invite his neighbour, as there were to be no fragments left for the next day; the morrow was to take thought for the things of itself. Job seems to observe the former rule; he ate not his morsel alone. If I find a cluster with a blessing in it, or get among the pleasant fruits that our beloved has laid up at our gates. I cannot sleep till I have imprisoned them on a bit of paper, nor rest satisfied till they are packed up and sent off to somebody, though I know I shall shortly be obliged to beg for more. Whatever be found under the priest's hand, of sacred things, it is lawful to give it to those of the household, even to the shew-bread; for if the shew-bread prefigured the Saviour, we are to hold him forth in the word of life. If it prefigured the believer, we are to hold him up to God in prayer. A Christian can never be too busy. He that is sluggish in his profession, is sent to the ant to learn her ways, and be wise; whose wisdom lies in providing her food in the summer. I will not say that by instinct she is instructed to know there is a winter, but it is clear that the beams of the sun draw her forth to labour; and her industry is equal to that of the husbandman, who makes hay while the sun shines. Nor is she a whit behind him, seeing she provideth her "meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest," Prov. vi. 6.
God has furnished his children with a multitude of teachers, if we could but observe them. A gospel is our summer and harvest, in which the Sun of Righteousness shines in our horizon; "life and immortality is brought to light by the gospel;" which, if cordially received, is meat indeed. This wonderful lesson is taught us by the instinct of the ant.
The saving knowledge of God, and the invaluable worth of the gospel, is taught us by the instinct of the ox and the ass; "the ax knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib; but Israel loth not know (either his God or his word), my people doth not consider," Isa. i. 3.
The visitations of God in a preached gospel, and the certainty of that gospel being removed from us, or were moved from that to judgment by death, is taught us by the instinct of the stork, the turtle, the crane, and the swallow; "yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle, and the crane, and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the Lord," Jer. viii. 7.
The danger that a soul is exposed to while out of Christ, the only rock of help - the necessity of flying from the wrath to come - and the safety of those that fly for shelter to "the cleft of that rock," Song ii. 14, is taught us by the instinct of the coney, "the conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks," Prov. xxx. 26.
The nauseous pharisaical hypocrite, that creeps into the church of God, and yet dares to hatch the cockatrice egg of free-will, and weave the spider's web of self righteousness, while he sits under the gospel, Isa. lix. 5; Job, viii, 14; is pointed out by the bold and subtle instinct of the spider - "the spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces," Prov. xxx. 28.
To be short. The Christian is taught to be bold by the Lion, Prov. xxx. 30. To be swift by the greyhound, Prov. xxx. 31. To be comely in his walk by the he-goat, Prov. xxx. 31. To be wise by the serpent. To be industrious by the ant. To cleave to the Rock of Salvation by the coney. To be heavenly-minded and quick sighted by the eagle. To be harmless by the dove. To know his Lord by the ox. To cleave to the Lord's word by the ass. To follow the light and heat of the gospel by the swallow. And to shun every rock of error by the skilful mariner, lest he make shipwreck of faith.
I am, dear Sir, your, &c.
Bless'd are the loving twain that walk the road
That leads at last to Zion's blesa'd abode;
The hallow'd path is like the shining light,
By which they shun the glootns of endless night.
The heedful traveller observes his path,
And seeks direction of his Lord by faith;
His mind compos'd upon his master's staid,
He feels him out, and finds his heav'nly aid.
This mystic path he walks in filial fear,
And finds no brute, no rav'nous monster there;
None but the saint can walk this milky way,
The child of darkness shuns the heavenly ray.
At each by - path he'll stop, he'll pray, and wait,
Till Christ appears, and makes the crooked straight,
Lest the wayfaring soul should trip or stray,
He bids us take the stumbling blocks away.
If God deserts him, he bemoans his loss,
Till he erects the standard of the cross;
Again he travels, void of doubt or fear,
While he discerns Jehovah's banner there.
Upon this path no fool shall ever err,
Because Jehovah is his guide and cure;
All roughs and mounts that Satan dares to throw,
God smooths the one, and brings the other low.
The word's a map, by which he learns the way,
And while he walks by that, he cannot stray;
He follows those whose souls are now with God,
And marks the steps that ancient saints have trod.
Jehovah says that such shall dwell aloft,
And see the promis'd land, though distant off;
The King immortal he by faith shall spy,
And see his beauty with a longing eve.
The host of heaven guard him on the way,
Nor leave their charge till he's in endless day;
His bless'd Redeemer travels by his side,
Nor is his wanted presence long deny'd.
At length he finds he's ne'er to end his race,
And eyes the great reward that comes by grace;
His shatter'd frame is bow'd upon the bed,
While arms divine support the drooping head.
His busy faith maintains her mighty hold,
While hope expects the vision to unfold;
The snares of death invade the heav'nly mind,
But through the gloom faith sees a beam divine.
The flesh unpanoply'd will fear the stroke,
The soul to lend it help will God invoke;
The blessed Saviour own'd, when low and meek,
The spirit's willing, but the, flesh is weak.
If heart and flesh through fear of death should fail;
The Spirit breathes a strong and heav'nly gale
To answer pray'r the Lord appears at length,
He feeds the mind, and props the heart with strength.
If sunk with grief, or rack'd with mortal pain,
To make his bed the Lord will not disdain:
His tender aid shall bear his spirit up,
His end is peace, his flesh shall rest in hope.
At last he breathes the ripen'd spirit forth,
God takes the soul who gave it first its birth
To heav'n it flies, the angels bear it in,
And thus he ends his journey and his sin.