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look up to him as the true cause of our judgment; yet it is both right and wise to inquire, in a proper spirit, into the physical causes of the evil.
The Excellent Woman, as described in the Book of Proverbs. London
Tract Society. The execution of this little work is very beautiful, and its contents most useful and instructive. As illustrations of Eastern forms and man. ners, the engravings which abound in it will be found very useful. Astronomy and Scripture; or some illustrations of that science and of
the Solar, Lunar, and Terrestrial Phenomena of Holy Writ. By the Rev. G. MILNER, M.A. London: J. Snow.
Without entering deeply into the science of astronomy, this work brings the whole subject before us in a very attractive way. It will be found a most useful family-book, within whose pages one may find as much of astronomy as ordinary and unscientific readers can take in. It is well written, and an excellent spirit breathes throughout it.
The Trial of Skill; or, Which is the best Story? By the author of
" The Juvenile Sunday Library,” Very Little Tales," &c. Edinburgh: Thomas Nelson. 1846.
There is much that is not only touching and entertaining, but of a highly instructive and moral tendency in these tales. We certainly do object to what is given as a picture of a happy Sabbath. The little girls are represented as equally disappointed on finding the morning too wet, to admit of their either going to church or visiting their little gardens. The sacred duties of the day seem accomplished to the satisfaction of the whole family, by reading the morning prayers and collects for the day. The afternoon and evening are spent in forming schemes as to the best mode of arranging some old furniture in the lodge, and making all comfortable within and neat without, to surprise one of their favourite pensioners, whose house it is to be! Delightful and healthful to the young mind as such plans of benevolence undoubtedly are, we think a pious and judicious mother would hardly have opened this subject of excitement to her children till God's day was past. We are sorry to say that amid all the excellent lessons inculcated by this book, we feel that of how to spend a holy and a happy Sabbath day, has signally failed. In other respects
, we like the little book much, and admire the happy blending of instruction and amusement. We expect this will furnish both pleasing and profitable occupation to many of our young friends, over their Christmas fire.
The Young Professor, being the Substance of Eight Lectures, 8c. By
the Hon. and Rev. H. M. VILLIERS, M. A. London: Nisbet & Co. 1846.
Though this little work is more especially addressed to members of the Church of England, yet its usefulness need not be confined to these. It is full of a pastor's affection and a watchman's faithfulness. It contains clear and unflinching statements of Christian doctrine and duty. It is solemn and searching, manifesting throughout the tone of a man in thorough earnest about the souls committed to his care. Relationships. By the Author of " Detached Thoughts." Dublin : S. B.
Oldham. 1846. A very small book in size, but written with very considerable power both of thought and style.
The Jews in Great Britain ; being a Series of Six Lectures, delivered
in the Liverpool Collegiate Institution, on the Antiquities of the Jews in England. By the Rev. Moses MARGOLIOUTH, Incumbent of Glasnevin, Dublin. London: J. Nisbet & Co. 1846.
We are quite sure that there are few of our readers who are at all acquainted with the facts brought out in this volume. They are intensely interesting as well as historically important. The minute and patient research here bestowed upon the history of the Jews in England, has brought to light a mass of curious information, of which few have any idea. The work is one of real value in more ways than one; especially as containing fragments of history almost inaccessible. We commend the volume most warmly to the perusal, not only of the tribes of Israel, but the readers of British history. The Annual Festivals of the Jews considered in their Prophetic Character, in Six Lectures. By the Rev. J. B. LOWE, C. B. Dublin : S. B. Oldham. 1846. We wish that we had more space to afford, in order to enter more minutely into this work, and into its interesting subjects. This, however, we have not. And we can only say that it is a truly spiritual and practical volume, fitted to bring out the meaning of Israel's solemn festivals. It is a series of well-thought and well-written lectures, from which the reader will learn not only much of Israel and Israel's glory, but still more of Immanuel and Immanuel's glory. My Sunday School Class. Twelve Lectures, 8c. By John F. SERJEANT.
London: J. Nisbet & Co. Much fitted for usefulness in Sabbath schools. Teachers would find it a very helpful work in their labours, and parents, too, might derive much from it in the instruction of their children. The introduction is admirable. It should be printed separately and put into the hands of every teacher and every parent. Nelson's British Library. Thomas Nelson, London and Edinburgh.
This is reading of a higher and more Christian style than Chambers', while nowise inferior in point of literary merit. Some of the articles in it are intensely interesting, and upon subjects of highest moment. It is rising we believe, and will rise in public estimation. We sincerely wish that it may either force other similar works to assume a higher and more religious aspect, or else supersede them altogether. In the article on
Columbus we are sorry to see SELF-RELIANCE spoken of in the way
in which it is done. This word is becoming fashionable, and as we regard it as a very improper and unsound one, we must protest against its use here. We do not charge the writer with making it a substitute for reliance upon God, but we do charge him with the employing of a word which in the lips of many means that, and which is now coming into use among a large class who either attach a very questionable meaning to it or no meaning at all. Where is the word self-reliance, or the idea that it conveys to be found in the Bible ? Is it not against the idea which it involves that God warns us in every page of his word ? Two Counsels of Wisdom ; an Essay in two Discourses on Luke xii. 35.
Translated from the French of A. VINET. London: J Nisbet & Co., 1846.
As usual in M. Vinet's discourses, there is no interpretation of the passage chosen for a text, but merely a dissertation upon certain truths or ideas suggested by it. This is a serious fault : for it presents us with too much of man and too little of God, even when the word of God is professedly our text. But in other respects M. Vinet's writings are most valuable. This essay is quite in his own style, thoughtful and striking.
The Jewish Chronicle. Various numbers. New York, 1846. We have more than once noticed this American periodical, and we gladly advert to it again to recommend it to our readers.
It is the organ of " the American society for meliorating the condition of the Jews,” and while it contains much intelligence as to the operations of that society, it is occupied in great part also with the discussion of kindred subjects. While it is a “chronicle” it is also an expositor ;" and many interesting articles on passages of Scripture are to be found in it. It will be no discommendation of it to say that it takes a warm interest in the Free Church and its proceedings. Thoughtfulness and Thankfulness, a book for the New Year. By John
Cox. London: Ward & Co. An excellent New Year's gift, most solemn, faithful, and affectionate. It breathes throughout the spirit of the devoted servant of Christ, of one who is in earnest about his people, of one who desires to be useful to the church of God. Notes Explanatory and Practical on the Epistle to the Romans. By the
Rev. ALBERT BARNES. Edited by the Rev. I. COBBIN. London: Tegg & Co., 1847.
We need not enter into a discussion of the merits or demerits of Barnes' Notes. We differ decidedly on some points, and would not therefore be understood as approving unqualifiedly of his commentaries. At the same time there is much that is learned and useful in his works. The present is a reprint from the ninth American edition, revised and corrected by the author. The Light of Prophecy let in on the dark places of the Papacy. By the
Rev. A. Hislop, Årbroath. Edinburgh: W. Whyte & Co., 1846.
mass of well digested information. We do not subscribe to all the author's interpretations, but this shall not hinder us from approving of his work, and heartily wishing it a wide circulation through the land. The Wycliffites ; or, England in the fifteenth century. By Mrs Colonel
TACKAY, authoress of “ The Family at Heatherdale,” &c. &c. Edinburgh : W. P. Kennedy, 1846.
Lest the title of this work should lead some to expect something relating to Wycliffe personally, and to his times, we would refer them to the date, which sufficiently indicates that it refers rather to the followers of the great reformer, and to the influence which the doctrines he taught continued to exercise over the succeeding generation. These have been well brought out in an historical narrative of the fifteenth century with which they have been blended. True religion, the religion of the Bible, was no easy or fashionable profession in that age. spite of the scorn and the danger attending the avowal of this belief, many of the poor among the people, and some more perilously situated in the high places of the earth, had grace to own the faith they learned in Wycliffe's treasured translation of the Bible, and had their eyes opened to the fallacy and insufficiency of those tenets which emanated from no higher an authority than the church.
The period chosen is one peculiarly rich in stirring events. Perhaps in no century of English history has four country and government experienced such sudden and unexpected changes. If there is less illustration of the manners of the times than might have been expected in such a narrative, and less of the detail of domestic life than we might have anticipated from a female pen, we must recollect to what a remote date we are carried, and that other than the fireside graces were chiefly called into action during the wars of the Roses. Our authoress keeps very faithfully to the outline of historical facts, and has filled up the picture well, centering the chief interest of the story in one noble family, in whose circumstances there is ample scope for the exhibition of character and principle. We think a work of this kind was needed. Such an obscurity rests over the persecuted little flock for some centuries before the Reformation, that it has been assumed too often, as a matter of course, that there was little religion except in the Popish church. How false this is we need not stay to prove. But while so much is said of the romantic honour and chivalry of those warlike ages, it is cheering and profitable to turn for a little to the confessors of that simple scriptural faith so much despised, and to trace some of its evident fruits, shining most brightly in the most trying circumstances and most testing times. Lectures on the Widow of Nain, and various other passages of Scripture.
By the Hon. and Rev. LOWTHER BARRINGTON, M.A. London: James Nisbet & Co.
Plain and practical, containing some clear and simple statements of divine truth, and though this volume is not remarkable either for originality or vigour, it seems fitted to accomplish the author's aim—the comfort and edification of believers.
PRAYER-UNION.—We intimated this in our last number, and we would remind our readers of it, now that the time is at hand. The eight days from Sabbath the 3d to Sabbath the 10th of January, are to be set apart for this end. It is hoped, and earnestly desired, that all who love to pray will join together in this proposal. We have much pleasure in inserting the General Assembly's tract on the subject.
“ He on whose name we call is our God and Father. He is no unknown God, but one whose name we know,' and therefore in whom we can entirely trust.
“ It is upon no doubtful footing that we come to him. The relationship which we stand to him, and he to us, is no uncertain or precarious thing. It is sure and abiding. He is our Father, and we his children. We have learned to say, 'Abba, Father, with no faltering lip or misgiving heart. We have ceased to suspect and dread him, as once we did. Our eye looks up to his-our hand takes hold of hisour heart rests placidly on his. We reason thus : ' He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things ?' He that has given us the greater gift, will he withhold the less ? He that has given the vast ocean, will he grudge us a single drop? Or, perhaps, looking upwards to where that Saviour sits at God's right hand, having by himself purged our sins, we reason thus : If, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. If God did so much for us when enemies, what will he not do for us now that we are friends ? If a dying Saviour did so much for us when enemies, what will not a living Saviour do for us when friends? If God gave us such infinite blessings unsought by us, and when we had no name to plead in, what will he not give us now that we come asking in the name of his beloved Son ?
“We come, then, to God as those that' know the Father.' This is the characteristic which Christ himself singled out from among many others as peculiarly marking out and describing his disciples. It is under this simple designation that he speaks of them to the Father himself. It is by this description that he contrasts them with the world. They know the Father-the world knows him not ! They are not better by birth, or nature, or parentage, or education, or life-nay, perhaps they were the vilest of sinners ; but they were brought by the Spirit to know the Father ;' and this is all they can say for themselves. This is the very most and best that Christ can say for them. They know the Father, and this is enough. The world knows him not, but they know him; and in this they greatly rejoice : ' For this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent?
“ But it is not merely as their Father that they know him, but as the Father of their Lord and Saviour-his Father and their Father, his God and their God. This double relationship links them to him by a double tie. They are related to him directly, for he is their Father. They are related to him also indirectly, yet most nearly, for he is the Father of their Lord Jesus Christ. And thus it is that the apostle speaks : ' For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.' (Eph. iii. 14.) Hence, also, the saints sing such a song as this : Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ'
(Eph. i. 3) ; or this other, of much the same import : ' Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who, according to his abundant mercy, hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Pet. i. 3.) The character, then, in which we look up to God and call upon his name, is as Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the head of the one family that is called by that glorious name. And thus we come to him as standing in the same relationship towards him as Christ himself does ; not simply deriving our right or liberty of coming into his presence from what Christ has done, but coming in his