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our own happy land, what Egypt now is, the basest of kingdoms. This is one reason why I hope you all attend the Sabbath school, and impress the lessons you are taught upon your hearts, that you may become the children of God, and that the protection of our land and our homes may be the love of God in the hearts of our people.

May the great and holy God, who will be found of those who seek him, show you the way of his salvation, and make you all that your superintendent, your pastors and your parents can desire. I remain, children,

Your pastor,



“0, that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men."

Strange that the Lord should visit the evil and unthankful children of men with his goodness at all! But since he does, and that so abundantly, it is surely meet that we should praise him. And who would not praise the Lord, if, with the psalmist they could say, "we have thought of thy lovingkindness, O God."

I have lately been much affected while meditating upon the goodness of God to Noah. One feature of this case stands out with peculiar distinction,-a feature which I had not specially observed before. It was the complexity of that act of the Divine goodness. It seemed not a single fact; but rather the result of many wonderful works, all blending together, to fill the cup and crown the bliss of that good man. The effect upon my mind, as I meditated, and returned again and again to the pleasant theme, was similar to that which the devout astronomer experiences, as he gazes upon a double star, a nebula, or a single point in the milky


The Goodness of God to Noah.


way, through a powerful telescope. How sublime his emotions, as the light separates, and he beholds worlds and systems he never saw before.

Indeed, I flatter myself with having made a grand discovery, and I propose to make it known, though very likely I may seem to others, only “very new in what is old.”

Passing all those means and instruments by which Noah's salvation froin the waters of the flood was affected, I will notice a few of those features in his case, which seem to me as though they had been thrown in, so to speak, to ensure the blessing God would confer upon his friend.

Noah was a son, a husband, a father, and all these tender ties were graciously regarded, in the arrangements of God with regard to the deluge. He was also a man, and a good man, linked to his fellow-men by a thousand bonds. His affections went out tenderly toward the saints that were in the earth, and the excellent in whom was all his delight; and what a shock would have been inflicted upon his pious soul,—what pain, if the righteous had been swallowed up with the wicked,—or, indeed, if the whole world of sinners had been suddenly overwhelmed, and that all unwarned. Now, mark the goodness of God to Noah in these respects.

In the first place, the awful judgment was delayed. long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was preparing.” During these 120 years, Noah performed the office of a “preacher of righteousness,” and the Spirit of Christ was with him. What an opportunity to learn what was in man. And when he found the great mass deaf to all his exhortations,—when they added mocking and scorn to neglect, “filling up their sins always,”—when they made themselves merry at his expense, wagging their heads and reviling him, as they passed by the ark,—when they continued to proceed from evil to evil, and would not cease to blaspheme the God of heaven, and hate and persecute the saints, would not Noah discover adequate reasons to justify the ways of God in their destruction ? Must he not at the end of this long respite, thus fruitless of good, and so prolific in every species of evil, have become composed and ready to ascribe righteousness unto God, when he took vengeance ? And would he not be prepared to exclaim, with all the holy in heaven, as the fatal morning broke with the knell of the old world, “Amen, Alleluia.”


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And besides, during those 120 years, the saints and excellent of the earth were, one after another, taken away from the evil to come. And, if Noah's ministry was instrumental of good to any,—if seals of his ministry were granted him,—these spiritual children may also have been removed to heaven-dying naturally and peacefully. In my own mind, there is no doubt that the wheat had all been gathered and housed, before that great and terrible day of the Lord. And all this was extremely considerate and kind, in its aspect toward Noah. How sweetly could he sing of the mercies as well as of the judgments which were passing before him.

In the second place, God wonderfully provided against the sudden and unnatural rending of relative ties. When the flood commenced, Noah stood alone, in the midst of his safe and happy family. His forefathers were all dead. He was the only man in the whole list of patriarchs from Adam, who, at the age of 600 years, had not a father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, save only the break made by the translation of Enoch, who was removed at the early age of 365; and of course lest his son and grand-son less directly linked to the past by living ancestors. Neither had there ever before, since men began to multiply on the earth, been a year, till the year of the flood, when one man, at the age of Noah, could stand so disinterested and free from filial anxiety as he did. His father had deceased five years before, and his grandfather the very year of the flood. Was not this of the Lord's doings? And was it not in great kindness to Noah ?

Again, it was different with Noah in regard to descendants,


The Goodness of God to Noah.


from what it had ever been with his fathers, at his age. He had but three children; and neither of these, though all married, had offspring till after the deluge. His children, too, were all sons, and therefore their matrimonial relations could not separate them from his family, and his paternal authority according to the patriarchal system. A large family would have greatly increased the labor, and the danger of training them up to walk in the ways of the Lord,—and the liabilities to apostatising children's children, would have still further endangered the family unity—and doubtless, if given in marriage before the flood, would have almost inevitably broken up that unity,-or if unmarried, still greater evils might have been reasonably apprehended.

Was it not, then, in great mercy that the Lord suspended, in this case, his ordinary blessing, and prevented the increase of Noah's family, till he was established in the new world ? Was it not vastly kind thus to guard against the wounds that might have been inflicted, had Noah, like his forefathers, at the age of six hundred, stood at the head of a large family, composed of children, and children's children, to the third and fourth generation ?

And then the blessed family covenant. God transacted specifically with Noah; but for his sake the influence and blessing of the covenant embraced all that were his,— his whole family. With thee will I establish my covenant, and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy son's wives, with thee.” This was God's first annunciation to Noah, while he was himself not so much the head of a distinct family, as a member in the family of his grandfather and father. And again, when he was absolutely at the head of his own family, just before the crisis came on, “The Lord said unto Noah, Come, thou and all thy house into the ark, for thee have I found righteous before me in this generation.” The covenant was made with Noah, and for his sake ; and yet, in the goodness of God to his friend, it embraced all the dearest objects of earthly love.

“How great thy mercies, Lord !

How plenteous is thy grace!
Which, in the promise of thy love,

Includes our rising race.”

But I will not enlarge,-only adding, in conclusion, that I have examined several other passages of sacred history, after this manner, and have almost invariably found that the goodness of the Lord to the children of men is compler,-each act of that goodness involves a vast number of wonderful works. The Bible, I am now disposed to liken to the milkyway. Study it through the telescope of patient and prayersul thought,-meditate upon its themes, and the blessed light separates, unfolding unnumbered and beautiful stars, that otherwise are invisible to mortals.

E. H. B.

TABERNACLE SABBATH SCHOOL, CINCINNATI, BROTHER BULLARD,—Another subject that has interested me much in reading the “ Visiter,” is your sketches of Sabbath schools. It may be that a sketch of our “ Tabernacle" Sabbath school may be as interesting to you. Shall I attempt one? It possibly may stir up some minds to greater diligence and more faith.

On the first Sabbath in January, 1842, a small house, 30 by 40, was dedicated to the service of God, and opened for Sabbath school instruction. It was situated in a new part of this city, familiarity known as “Texas." The first house lot was sold at auction in 1838. Until that time it was occupied as a farm, up to the line where the city population has become somewhat dense. The school house was badly located on the outside of “ Texas," for the sake of groundrents free. The school opened with twenty-five scholars, and a good library of some three hundred volumes. For a while it was discouraging work for teachers, being so far from their several churches. In May following, I cast in my lot

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