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THE RIGHTEOUS AND THE WICKED.

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every side. A dreadful sound is in their ears; and they are in great fear when no fear is. I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green-bay tree. Yet he passed away, and lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, and he could not be found. Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright, for the end of that man is peace. But the transgressors shall be destroyed together; the end of the wicked shall be cut off. But the salvation of the righteous is of the LORD: He is their strength in the time of trouble. And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: He shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him."

In your setting out in life, or in your beginning business, and establishing a character in a new place, commit your ways to the Lord, and He will guide you. With dependence upon Him, and trust in His fatherly goodness, you carry your fortune in your own hands, and your happiness in your own heart. The destruction of your purity of character is the destruction of your peace. Keep your heart, with all diligencegovern your thoughts and desires-for out of it are the issues of life. And in all your sorrows and disappointments in the city full, or desert waste; on the wild rolling waves, or lonely mountain hights, remember that, “Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame: He remembereth that we are dust. Call upon me,” saith God,“ in the day of trouble, and I will deliver you."

CHAPTER XVI.

THE LAW OF RETRIBUTION.

"So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai."Esther vii: 10.

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Retribution !
Haunted and dogged him, through the shadows dim,
Outran his heavy step, awaited him,
As through his spacious halls he passed and sought
His private chamber.”Two Millions.

A proverb says: “Harm watch, harm catch," and it

, , is a true saying. The Sacred writings teach, by direct precept, and by narratives, that there is a Providence that makes the way of transgressors hard, so that the sinners own wickedness reproves him, and his own backslidings correct him. A gallows is not a pleasant pulpit, nor an agreeable place for a sermon, yet we cannot leave one so high as Haman's without some further moralizings. Fifty cubits high, the highest, I presume, ever built since the foundation of the world. The cubit, among the ancients, was of a different length among different nations.

The Roman cubit is generally estimated at seventeen inches and four-tenths;

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and the Hebrew cubit, at a little less than twenty-two inches; and the English cubit, at eighteen inches. Haman's gallows was, therefore, some seventy-five to ninety feet high.

In Haman's history, as in that of Samson, we have a most remarkable illustration of the terrible law of retribution, which the Supreme Ruler of the universe has ordained, the presence of which runs like a flame of fire through all history, and through all the dispensations of Providence. In selecting foxes as instruments of his vengeance, Samson selected the animals which, of all others, were the most appropriate to the nature of the insult. Foxes are cunning, and it was through their wit the Philistines had prevailed against him. They won the garments from him, at his wedding, by stratagem, and their cornfields were burnt by foxes—animals proverbial for their cunning:

But the judgments of God that begin on a man's property, if not arrested by penitence and forgiveness, soon take hold on his person.

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process with Job, and with the Egyptians, though, in them, the attributes illustrated are different. From the murrain among their cattle, the LORD proceeded until their first-born were slain. And if judgments begin at the house of God, what will be the end of the ungodly, who obey not the Gospel ?

When the Philistines saw their cornfields, vineyards and olives destroyed, they at once understood how, and for what it was done; they, therefore, came and burnt Samson's wife and her father, inflicting upon her the very death threatened, and to escape which she had betrayed her newly married husband. And because

This was

THE PHILISTINES AND THE JEWS.

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Samson had burnt their fields of corn, the Philistines burnt the Timnites. They must have felt that Samson had been unjustly treated, and hoped, by this means, to appease him. The retribution upon Samson's wife and father was most inhuman and barbarous, and, in every way, out of all proportion in its severity. For it does not appear that either of them had anything to do with the burning of the cornfields, yet their own countrymen burnt them for what the Hebrew Samson had done. Samson's wife, in trying to avoid Scylla, fell into Charybdis. She betrayed her husband, because she feared her Philistine brethren would burn her, and her father's house, with fire, and yet, by their hands, she was burned with fire, and her father also. She leaped into the flames she meant to avoid. And so the Jews, who crucified our Lord, did the same thing. The Pharisees and priests did violence to their conscience—and were determined not to receive Jesus as the Messiah. According to their ideas of the character of the Messiah, if they received Jesus as such, the Romans would come down on them with fire and sword. Their convictions were on the side of Jesus' miracles, but their fears were against His claims to be the Messiah. Their rejection of Him, therefore, was not on the ground that he did not perform miracles, but because of what they supposed would be the consequences; and here they made a great mistake. They did not act from principle, bat from expediency. They consulted not what was right, but their prejudices and their fears. Their unbelief arose not from a defect in the Gospel evidences, but from their low views of religion, and their supreme selfishness. They thought

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