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however, though man may act as he pleases, y Gød overrules all things fo as to bring about h own purpoles. God, in this instance, had plan in view. He had made a promise Abraham, the grandfather of Jacob, who w the father of Ifaac, that from him the Savio should come, for that “in his feed all the fam lies of the earth should be blessed." In full ment of this promise, Isaac and Jacob wer born. I should here remark, by the way, tha to Jacob the name of Israel was given; so tha when the Scriptures speak of the Israelites, it i me same thing as if they said the children *0 Jacob. Of these there were twelve tribes, every one of the sons of Israel becoming the father o a whole tribe. There Ifraelites, after a time, were brought out from Egypt, having been very ill treated there by king Pharaoh, and they became a great and famous people; for God wrought many miracles in the midst of them, and gave them the law of the ten commandments, and set up his worship among them, and separated them from the rest of the world, which continued in ignorance of God and of the scriptures.
It was froin these Ifraelites (or Jews, as they were afterwards called,) that the promised Saviour came. And, blessed be God, this Saviour is not the Saviour of the Jews only, but he is now preached to us,
upon whom the ends of the world are come." How important then is the story of Joseph in this view. It was a necessary link in the great chain of Pro
vidence, and this chain reaches from the beginning of the world, even to the end of it. Nor is it with the life of Joseph only, that the providence of God concerns itself. Your life and mine, and all the various events of it, great and small, from our birth unto our dying hour, are equally under the divine direction. The same God who sent the Ishmaelites to the pit's mouth, when Joseph was so near being left to perish there, the same God who gave Joseph favor in the fight of Potiphar his master, and who afterwards delivered him out of prison, and made him ruler over all Egypt, appoints also to us the bounds of our habitation, and orders our whole lot in life. If then, like Jofeph, we are serving God, let us not fear to trutt him; and though we should fall occasionally into straits, as Joseph did, yet let us hope, when the end of our days shall come, and when the whole of our story shall be told, that we shall be able to trace the Lord's goodness and mercy even in the most affli&tive circumstances of our lives, as we have now been doing in the case of Jofeph.
Nor let us wonder at the vast confufion and disorder which we sometimes fee in the world in general. Let not our faith fail us, if now and then the wicked should seem every where to prosper, and the whole company of the righteous should come under adversity. The history of Joseph shews, that it is the plan of Providence sometimes to withdraw, in appearance, his protection and favor from his own fervants, and to put off, to a future season, the evil day which is coming upon finners. Soon, however, the time will come, when all that has been crooked shall be made straight, and all that has been dark in Providence, shall be cleared up.
The story of Joseph, as we also observed, is but a small part of scripture; it fills but a few pages of that large and comprehensive volume, being connected, however, with events which go before, and with those which follow after; and just so, methinks, the history of this whole globe of ours is but like a single leaf in a great volume, and it cannot be fully understood until the dealings of God with all his various creatures shall be made known, until the whole book of his providence shall be opened, and until all those events, both past and future, with which God's government of this world may be connected, shall be fully revealed. Let us wait, therefore, in the exercise of faith and hope, remembering, as the Apostle says, that while we are here below, “ We know but in part; but when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.--For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face. Now we know in part; but then shall ! we know, even as also we are known."
R thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God shall give thee."
In the New Testament, it is written, “ Chil. dren obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.” We there also read, that our Saviour himself, when he was twelve years old, was subject to his parents, and in one of the following verses it is added, that
Jesus encreased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man."
There is hardly any sighi more pleasing than that of a little child honoring his parents, listening attentively to all that is faid to him, running quickly to fulfil their wishes, and being thus * subject" or obedient to them, after the example of Christ his Savionr. And on the other hand, there are few sights more meloncholy and unpromising than that of a child who is obfti
nate and disobedient, who does not honor his father, nor give ear to the voice of his mother, but must be spoken to, again and again, and who can hardly be brought, even by stripes, to do the thing which is commanded him.
The ill behaviour of some children, and efpecially of very young ones, may be considered as greatly owing to a fault in their parents; for the same law which says " Children obey your parents,” implies, that parents ought to teach them obedience. In many places children seem to rule the house; the most important conversation is interrupted by their unseasonable noise; every one is to wait their time, and all things are rendered subject to their humours.
Now this is just the contrary to what it should be. God has ordained, that parents shall die rect, and children shall obey. He has established in the world, a plan of subordination, and that person who begins life by rebelling against his parents, in defiance of this Commandment of Cod, will be too likely to prove a bad subject, a violent master, an ill-tempered husband, a troublesome friend, and an undesirable connection in all the later periods of his life; whereas, a young man or woman, having for a course of years fulfilled faithfully and affectionately, and in the fear of God, every filial duty, and especially having done it under trying circumstances, has given one of the best proofs that can be afforded, of a disposition to attend to all the other obligations of relative life, and deserve to be