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nounces honourable in all, and refuse to know a wicked person, as an inmate of your family, he will provide against a possible evil, in the very anticipation of which you run counter to his gracious command, to take no such anxious care for the morrow? Or, really incapacitated from undertaking the office yourself, and disappointed in your search for å married nurse, cannot you look to the same blessing on a different mode of nourishment? It is customary, we are aware, to denounce the practice of bringing up infants, as it is called, by hand: but to this prejudice we can oppose the observation of many years, the personal knowledge of many individuals growing up in the enjoyment of remarkably sound and vigorous constitutions, whose nutriment was yielded by the cow or the goat, from the very day of their birth.
We have been assured that, to save appearances, a ring is sometimes bought, for the finger of the unhappy being who never appeared before the altar with the father of her child: but this we do not like to credit, because it would imply something too glaringly opposed to even common honesty-a lesson of deliberate, habitual deceit, inculcated where Satan had, perhaps, omitted to suggest such duplicity : and overthrowing at once every pretence of doing good to the soul of the unhappy transgressor.
If this most important subject were duly weighed --and that in the balances of the sanctuary--its difficulties would often lead to a more persevering and successful effort, on the niother's part, to fulfil a sweet and sacred office, which ought to be among the dearest of her cherished privileges. But if there be a real inability for the task, then he who knoweth our frame, and whose tender care for the little lambs is far beyond that of the fondest mother, will assuredly provide, in answer to the prayer of faithaccompanied as it ought to be, and as the prayer of true faith ever will be, by a fixed determination to abide by his known will.
In conclusion, let us most earnestly entreat all our female readers, to take into their most compassionate consideration, the state of those whose transgressions ought to exclude them from any part in our households; at least, until long trial has given good ground for trusting that they are reclaimed from the error of their ways. Alas! how wide, and how neglected a field here lies before us.
It is a crying evil, one that falls most peculiarly within the province of the Christian lady to ameliorate: and surely the Lord will bless every effort made to that intent, short of sacrificing the best interests of those who are especially committed to our own guardianship.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE CHRISTIAN
MADAM, I cannot be unwilling to explain the expression in which your correspondent, Margaret, finds a difficulty. The paradox of being 'cursed with a good gift,' touches upon that great anomaly which human understanding cannot penetrate : but your correspondent needs not to be told there was a time when every thing here was good ; and there came a time when every thing was cursed; and evil would those good things bave remained for ever, had not redeeming love interposed to take the curse out of them. Of these are our mental powers, as well as our temporal possessions. Good in themselves, they are no longer blessings in the hand that holds them. Is wealth always a blessing? Is beauty always a blessing? Are the highest intellectual endowments not often the very impetus to destruction ? Or, to the point in question, is it a blessing to a child to possess a talent for music, which, before it is capable of choosing for itself, induces the parent to sacrifice it, mind and body, at the shrine of vanity? This was the case supposed: if your correspondent still thinks the language inaccurate, or unfit to convey my meaning, I can only add, that it is strictly scriptural. When I applied the term 'cursed' to the good gist
of God, I meant what he meant when he said,“ Cursed is the ground for thy sake;" “ cursed shall be thy basket and thy store; cursed shall be the fruit of thy land, the increase of thy kine and the flocks of thy sheep.”
With respect to Margaret's objection to the term “ nature,” I can only differ from her. I have no objection to any one of the expressions she reprobates. The terms, “ beauties of nature,” powers of nature,”
," “ hand of nature," and others similar, appear to me perfectly proper words for designating those properties with which it has pleased God to endow the natural world : while the terms,
gifts of nature, “ dictates of nature," “ light of nature,” &c. with equal propriety designate the powers and capacities of the natural man, as distinct from the afterworks of divine grace. If the terms are accepted in another sense than that which they properly bear, the fault is in the acceptation, not the sense: it is not the words that mislead the thoughts, but the thoughts that falsify the words.
G. E. M.
PERPETUITY OF FAITH IN THE ELECT.
Theologians are very far from being agreed upon the question, whether it be possible for the elect to fall altogether from grace. Some have asserted, that the man who has once been reconciled to God, cannot again become his enemy; others have as strenuously maintained, that the pardoa of such a one may be forfeited, and he suffer the last doom of divine vengeance.
Perhaps some difficulty has arisen from an erroneous or confused statement of the doctrine. It is erroneous, I apprehend, to say, that into whatever enormity of sin an elect man runs, he still shall not perish: it is, I think, agreeable to the scriptures, to teach that an elect man shall, by the grace of God, be preserved from such sins as would plunge him into final ruin. He is “ kept through faith, unto salvation.”
And this seems to follow at once from the doctrine of election as laid down in a former paper. If it be true, as our article asserts, that 'predestination to life is the everlasting purpose of God, whereby... he hath constantly decreed.... to deliver, from curse and damnation, those whom he hath chosen in Christ out of mankind, and to bring them by Christ to everlasting salvation,' then to say, that these fall