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Encouragement for the Young
Garden of Gethsemane
Talmud, the .
30, 60, 82
What Seekest Thou? .
THE JEWISH ADVOCATE.
ADDRESS TO THE YOUNG.
Dear Young FRIENDS, The little work, of which this is the first number, will, with the Divine blessing, be continued every month, in order to afford you information respecting God's ancient people, the Jews.
Many young Christians have desired a publication which should present to themselves, and to their youthful friends and companions, instructive and interesting facts that have occurred in the past and present history of that “wonderful people” whom God chose as his own, and whom he has so mysteriously distinguished ; and many parents and clergymen, anxious for your spiritual good, have also requested that such a work as this is intended to be should be undertaken, that you may have a deep and unfailing interest in their welfare,
There is no history so instructive as is that of Israel ; none which teaches you, as it does, the wonders of God's goodness and severity, or shows you so clearly the faithfulness and unchanging love of him, your heavenly Father. You cannot study it, with a desire to benefit by such an occupation, without deriving a blessing from it. The ancient records respecting this nation were written
pen of inspiration. He who made them so peculiarly his own caused the history of their sins and their obedience, of their sufferings and their greatness, to be written for your instruction. “ These things happened unto them for ensamples; and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.
The history of the Jews, since the time when it was written by inspired penmen, is also deeply interesting and instructive. On the one hand, we are taught by it how fearful an evil sin is, and especially the sin of unbelief; on the other, even in the midst of all their woe, how marvellous is the unchangeableness of God; for “God hath not cast away his people; they are still beloved for their fathers' sakes; the gifts and calling of God are without repentance." +
Their very fall is riches to us; and whilst they have been enduring wrongs and suffering miseries such as no other people ever groaned under, they have been fulfilling one part of God's purpose, in teaching humility to the Gentile, and saying to him, “Be not high-minded, but fear; for if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee." I
Both parts of their history will, from time to time, be presented to you. Their religious services and ordinances, present as well as past, will be explained and illustrated.
The history of missions, established for their spiritual good, by the London Society for promoting Christianity amongst them; of schools for Jewish children; of the circulation of the Sacred Scriptures, &c., will be recorded ; and every effort will be made to
* i Cor. x. 11.
give you as much interesting instruction as such a work can contain.
The missionary work amongst the Jews is of the highest importance. We may not neglect it. Our Saviour's words are, “ Beginning at Jerusalem;" and the conduct of the great Apostle of the Gentiles teaches you, that he did not understand that direction as being confined to the city of Jerusalem, but as pointing out the Jews as the first to whom the Gospel should be preached in every place whither he should go. Hundreds of years have passed away, during which Christians neglected their duty to the Jews-nay, scorned them, robbed them, banished them, or murdered them. Oh! what reproach have they thus brought on the holy name of their professed Master, Jesus, our Lord—what strength they have given to the prejudices of the poor, persecuted Israelites, and how great the debt which we have therefore to discharge. As you will have placed before you, from time to time, the various motives which should lead you to pray for Israel, and labour in their behalf, nothing farther needs now be said respecting them.
You will find in your Bibles—and to them this little work will constantly refer you that God bas great things yet in store for his ancient people; that the days shall come when he will restore them, and when they shall look on him whom they have pierced, and mourn for having pierced him ; when Jerusalem shall be rebuilt, and her King, once rejected, shall be welcomed by her sons, who shall shout, “ Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord !” Then shall be the period of the earth's full blessedness, and her
rightful Lord, “ the King of the Jews," " be king over all the earth."
My dear Young Friends, I say no more to you as introductory than this—Remember always your own personal interest in the great things revealed in God's Holy Book; that there the only way of salvation is pointed out to you; that there you may and must learn for eternity. Pray that your heavenly Father may give you his Holy Spirit, and so “graft in your hearts the love of his name, increase in you true religion, nourish you with all goodness, and of his great mercy keep you in the same, through Jesus Christ our Lord;" * that you may “ see the good of his chosen, that you may rejoice in the gladness of his nation, and glory in his inheritance.”+
My dear Young Friends,
JAMES J. REYNOLDS.
BIBLE HISTORY OF THE JEWS.
And theirs by birth the Saviour of us all.”—COWPER. In reading the history of the Jews, we are led to inquire why they were elected as a peculiar people, set apart froin other nations, and go* Collect for Seventh Sunday after Trinity.
t Ps. avi, 4, 5.