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"an arm of flesh," for it is declared "cursed" to think so; not "the gates of hell," for they that turn them on their hinges know that “ they shall not pre

vail."

We are apt to tremble for the cause of the Gospel around us, when we see many depart, and walk no more with Christ. But let those who remain think of the concern which their own souls have in the matter. Have some drawn back? The Captain of salvation says, "What is that to thee? follow thou me." Is the number of the fearful or disaffected great, and is it increasing? No matter if it be twentytwo thousand. "What is that to thee? follow thou me." We are apt to be alarmed for the interests of the Redeemer's kingdom abroad, when we hear of the death of those who are gone forth as missionaries to promote it. But instead of desponding at this, dear brethren, knowing as we do the truth of his promise, and his power to fulfil it, ought we not rather to consider it as intended to try

our faith? Yes; it is only the voice of God, saying to us, "The people are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands." Certainly it is our duty to use all the means which God puts in our power, to strengthen our missionary ranks; and assuredly our constant fervent prayer should be, that God would send forth more labourers into the harvest, and more warriors into the field. But, nevertheless, when he is pleased, from time to time, thus to draft off, if I may so speak, the great men, and the strong men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, from our missionary host, it becomes us to look on with Gideon's patient faith and meek submission; to regard the mysterious dispensation as intended to make known that "the excellency of the power is of God, and not of us;" as in the case of Gideon it was said, "Lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me." Thus every death of a missionary will have a voice in it of encou

ragement, as well as of warning, from our God; and if we listen to it with the ear of Gideon's faith, it will tell us, "The

people are yet too many."

And our answer should be, "Be thou exalted, Lord, in thine own strength: so will we sing, and praise thy power."

Lastly, remember that "the time is short."

The battle with sin and Satan will soon be fought; the struggle soon over; the victory soon won; the crown soon placed upon the conqueror's head.

Let the eye of the believer take a range over all the things of time which intervene between the present moment and eternity. Let the good soldier of Christ view the land before him. Seest thou these kingdoms of the earth? They shall all "become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ.' Seest thou that Canaan? It is "the glory of all lands, and floweth with milk and honey;" it is a land of rest and peace; it is a promised land; it is all thine; the Lord has said, "Unto thee will I give it."

It is true, Jordan rolls between; but "when thou passest through the waters, he will be with thee." It is true, there is yet the last enemy to be destroyed; but meet him only in the power of faith, and in dependence on the Captain of salvation, who has conquered him already, and then the apostle's song of triumph shall be thine: "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me in that day."

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SERMON VII.

GIDEON'S VICTORY OVER THE MI-
DIANITES.

JUDGES Vii. 16-22.

And he divided the three hundred men into three companies, and he put a trumpet in every man's hand, with empty pitchers, and lamps within the pitchers. And he said unto them, Look on me, and do likewise and, behold, when I come to

:

the outside of the camp, it shall be, that as I do, so shall ye do. When I blow with a trumpet, I and all that are with me, then blow ye the trumpets also on every side of all the camp, and say, The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon.

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