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"ceived him not." The rulers of the then church would not acknowledge him: they were offended (it was but a natural consequence) with those who did The voices of children, proclaiming his titles, sounded harsh and grating in their ears; and they hinted by their question, that he himself ought to reprove, rebuke, and silence these little heralds of his praises. "Hearest thou what these say?"-as if they had spoken blasphemy. But mark the answer: "Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou "hast perfected praise?" In other words, "You "are ignorant of your own Scriptures; at least you "do not recollect what is written in the eighth "psalm; that when God is to be glorified for his "works, and those who should do it will not do it, "he makes even children the instruments of sham

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ing and confounding the adversaries of his truth: "out of the mouth of babes and sucklings he perfects praise," or, as it is in the original Hebrew, "or"dains, appoints, constitutes strength, to still the enemy and the avenger.",

The proposition arising from the text is evidently this; that God is pleased to esteem himself honoured, when children are taught to confess and to praise his holy name. A few considerations shall be offered, touching the grounds and reasons of such proposition, whence an application will follow to the charity which this discourse is designed to recommend.

On hearing, that "out of the mouth of babes and "sucklings God ordains strength to still the enemy," the thought which first strikes us is that suggested in

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another passage of Scripture, wherein he says, "My strength is made perfect in weakness." This is the circumstance which distinguishes the works of God from the works of man. When man has an end to accomplish, he must employ means originally and in themselves suited to that end. The materials and the persons who use them must be every way proper, and equal to the work. By him who is building a house, great preparations are made, plentiful stores of every thing necessary laid in, skilful and able artificers provided: and we know, beforehand, that by a due application of the causes, the effect may be produced. In the works of God it is otherwise. Means unlikely and improbable are chosen, persons weak and naturally unable selected, that the power may appear to be not in them, but in him. In this way he delights to show forth his glory through the whole creation. At the beginning, light shone out of darkness, order out of confusion, and all the beauty and fulness of the world which we behold arose from a chaos "with"out form, and void." By a silent, unseen, mysterious process, the fairest flower of the garden springs from a small insignificant seed, the majestic oak of the forest from an acorn, the strongest and wisest man from a wretched, helpless, and senseless infant; the holy and exalted saint from a miserable sinner. A prophet, with great justness and propriety, styles this, "the hiding of the divine power." And thus, upon the same plan, when the Gospel was to be preached and the world saved, not a company of philosophers, or an army of heroes, but a few illiterate Jewish

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fishermen were sent forth to accomplish the mighty work. Hear with what force and energy St. Paul treats this point: "The foolishness of God is wiser "than men; and the weakness of God is stronger "than men. For you see your calling, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, "not many noble, are called. But God hath chosen "the foolish things of the world, to confound the wise; " and God hath chosen the weak things of the world,

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reason;

to confound the things which are mighty; and base "things of the world, and things which are despised, "hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are." Then follows the "that no flesh should glory in his presence." The case of the children in the temple confounding by their hosannas the pride and malignity of the enemies of Christ, was, therefore, by no means single. It was upon the general scheme of the divine proceedings, as the power and skill of the artist are always proportionably manifested by the meanness and weakness of the instruments employed to effect his purpose.

But, secondly, God is still farther honoured when children are taught to confess and proclaim his truths, because hereby it is shown that his truths are such as children may confess and proclaim. All may receive the saving doctrines of our religion, and learn its wholesome precepts. Over the door of the school of the celebrated Plato, we are told, was written a sentence, importing, that no one must presume to enter there who had not first studied and rendered himself master of geometry. No such requisition is made by our blessed Master of those who mean to

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enter themselves in the number of his scholars. In other respects, learned or unlearned, wise or unwise, noble or ignoble, great or small, young or old, come who will, and he shall be instructed in all things necessary for him to learn, in order to his salvation; in a day, in an hour, he shall know more than the sages of antiquity were able to discover, from the dispersion of the nations at Babel to the coming of Christ, or would have discovered, from thence to the consummation of all things. This is a very wonderful consideration; and we must dwell a little upon it, for the honour and praise of revelation, and of that Being who vouchsafed it to man.

"In the beginning God created the heavens and "the earth." A child easily repeats and understands these few words of Moses. But the child who does so is at once in possession of a truth, which Heathen philosophy, for ages and generations, sought in vain; none could then with any degree of certainty determine by whom the world was made; whether it were made at all; whether there were many Gods, or one.

If the world were made by a good and gracious God, whence came so much evil as we all see and know to be in it? Here the wisdom of paganism was for ever at a stand. Bewildered and lost in its reasonings and guesses upon the subject, it soon came to question whether God were indeed good and gracious, or whether there could be any God who governed such a world. Let these men listen to a child nurtured in the Christian Scriptures. 'By one man's "disobedience sin entered into the world, and death

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by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that "all have sinned." What plainer or farther information can be desired?

Mankind have always found themselves tempted and carried on by their lusts and passions to offend God, by transgressing that law (whatever it might be) under which they lived. But who among them could tell the means by which they were to be reconciled to the offended Deity? Not one. Infinite were the devices and fancies of superstition to effect such reconciliation; but all in vain. It must have been dropped, and "let alone for ever," by them; whereas, every child with us knows, that "Christ has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself, "and is become the author of salvation to all who "believe in him, and walk according to that be"lief."

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At a certain time we die. the earth, and moulder to dust. And what is to befall them afterwards? Where is the wise man of the world that can give us instruction and assurance on this point? "Son of man can these dry bones live?" -is a question not to be answered out of the Christian school. In that school any child can answer it. "Now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the "first fruits of them that sleep. For as by man

came death, by man came also the resurrection of "the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in "Christ shall all be made alive. The hour is com

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ing in which all that are in their graves shall hear "his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done

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good, to the resurrection of life; and they that

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