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BY THE EDITOR-
Christian Worship in Nottinghamshire 103
Sunday School Centennial Memorials :: 223
V. A Brotherly Help Association
The Lessons of the Elections
Mr. Froud on the Baptists..
BALL, REV, G. H., D.D.-
General Baptist Building Fund
Signals for Preachers and Teachers 101
Christian Bands: are they desirable ? .. 443
SHAW, REV. N. H.
TURNER, Rev. J.-
The True Power of Baptist Nonconformity 18
FOR THE YOUNG-
Boys, Look at this!
One Drop of Ink
G. F. Bayley
Rev. James Brown
A Christmas Song..
Ministerial Farewells and Presentations 69
Magic Lantern for the Little Romans 102
The Work of our President at March 140
A Valuable Secret..
The Chronometer of God
Pay John Williams
How Old is Man?
A Shower of Iron
Is Life Worth Living?..
Chilwell College, Nottingham
Lay Preachers in Leicestershire
Kimberley and the Local Preachers
The New Burials Act
A Poacher Burning his Nets
A Vital Question
Pages 30, 67, 109, 149, 189, 228, 269, 310, 350
388, 430, 463
Pages 31, 70, 110, 150, 190, 229, 270, 311, 351
390, 431, 475
Pages 33, 73, 113, 153, 193, 233, 273, 313, 353
393, 433, 469
“A VOICE cried, sobbing in despair :
With glorious light, Weep for the tears you've shed;
And promise bright,
Will burst the New Year's dawn.
“On through the silent frosty night Weep—for the year is dead.
Shrill rang the voice and clear,
Fresh joys, fresh hopes are here, “A voice went ringing through the night: A tablet white Rejoice-a year is born;
On which to writeNo longer weep and mourn;
Greet, then, the new-born year.” So the “Two Voices” of the Old and New Year fall on our highly sensitive ears, and quicken and chasten the current of our thought. The sentries of time are changing. Weary December gives place to vigorous January. 1879 joins " the dead past.” 1880 steps forth, with nimble foot, bright eye, and lips all eloquent with promise upon“ the living present.” We utter our tender “good bye” to trembling Age, but hasten to dash away the tears of Regret, that we may give a cheery welcome to quick-footed, impetuous, and hope-inspired Youth.
It is the Midnight of the Years. The clock is striking twelve. The notes of the great bell of time peal along the clear crisp air, making the profound stillness resonant with an other-world solemnity and awe. The dear old year is dying: yes, is really going —, is gone!!
Why, it seems but yesterday we rose to greet its advent, and with believing and hopeful heart to share its companionships ; our timorous spirits, a little apprehensive, indeed, of repeating old sins and meeting new sorrows, but still wonderfully soothed by Him who is the Lord of all our years, and who presides over the succession of the Ages, as He said, “ Be not afraid, only believe ” Me.
Gone! gone beyond recall, and beyond redemption! That halffilled hand cannot receive another gift; that scant store of holy deed cannot be increased by a solitary jot. We meant, ah! did we not ? to load the year with our goodness; to fill his hand with “ the fruit” of our Spirit-life, to wreath his brow with a graceful coronet of pure, heroic virtues, and to crowd his granary with the harvest of our beneficence.
JANUARY, 1880.-VOL. LXXXII.--N. S. No. 121.
But the door is shut, the key is turned, and we cannot get in another shock, not even a solitary ear of corn; the grip of the hand is fixed, and will not relax, and our pleas and regrets are alike in vain. Our hearts ache at the sight of our helplessness to repair the past, with its wasted hours, its follies, its mean selfishness, its sins. Ah, comrades, let men say what they please, we feel it an unspeakable solace at this midnight of
to know that God, our Father, sends the light of His radiant holiness through all this year, and searches out every sin and brings it to the all-revealing and all-purifying light of the Cross, that “the blood of His Son Jesus Christ may cleanse from all sin.” It is that fact of full forgiveness, and of glad welcome into the Divine Light, that lifts the crushing burden of regret and shame, and enables us to start the New Year determined, in spite of a thousand gnawing failures of purpose and of motive and of achievement, to "press toward the mark of the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
Nor can we hesitate a moment as to our persistent effort; for though we have put so little into the Treasury of the Past, yet, how sublimely God has loaded it with His benefits! What mercy, what patience, what long-suffering, what gentleness! How loving His disciplines! How strong His support! How cheering His presence ! Had it not been for His precious love we could not have survived the crushing sorrow that came down on us like an avalanche, started by a whisper! If He had not inspired us with new hope we must have sunk beneath the engulphing waters of despairs and defeats, of blighted trusts, and broken plans. Had He not cheered us in our desolations and given us the strength to resist the fierce onset of evil, we must have lost all ! Verily our Father has been good, unutterably good to us! His loving chastisements, and gentle leadings, and strong consolations, have been new with the mornings, and persistent through the nights! Regrets! Ah, we would spend hours on them were it not that our hearts are so filled with gratitude for the exceeding riches of His grace, that song drives off regret, joy wipes away the tear, and we stand on the threshold of the New Year with a glad and thankful psalm.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy name.”
But although the bell has struck the clock is still ticking. Time
6 Fresh joys, fresh hopes are here,
A tablet white,
On which to write." Though one voice is hushed, another fills the air, and invites to Anticipation and to Work. January is New; and in his tiny hand holds the key of the future. What doors it will fit, to what spacious abodes, filled with plenty, it will admit us, we know not : but eager hopefulness gleams from the Stranger-Infant's Eye, and the possibilities cf the Young are infinite and glorious.
But all the years join in the mandate of the new morn,“ Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.” The moment for regrets is gone. The hour of anticipation is passing.
“ Act, act, in the living present,