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can be no special revelation to any man without a willingness on God's part to confer upon some events or some great teacher his own authorization, and a willingness on man's part to receive the revelation as such. Therefore the revelation made to some is necessarily a concealment from others. If certain events have happened which have revealed God in a special way to our race, then the limitation of this disclosure to a certain nation or period in the world's history, while it has revealed it to the shepherds of Bethlehem or the fishermen of Galilee, has to that extent, and for a while, hidden it from the princes of the East and the philosophers of Greece. If God's revelation has been made to certain nations, and if He is educating our race by conferring special and peculiar functions on different nations of men, then the process has been one of election upon the grand scale, and He whose love has revealed itself to some has concealed itself from others. If, too, this was to be part of God's deep and merciful design, and if it was most consistent with His glory to reveal Himself specially to individuals and tribes of the human family at a great central epoch and place on the world's surface, then it has also been His glory to conceal this knowledge of Himself from others until in the progress of His salvation and grace all the nations should walk in the light of it.

Again, the revelation though made, needed, as we have said, special eyes, ears, minds, and hearts to receive it. It is reasonable to suppose that if God has

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revealed Himself to man, there must be certain conditions of mind and heart which would accept the revelation, while others would reject or fail to perceive it. It must be so, unless when once presented to the human mind, all men are equally qualified to accept it, and all conditions of the understanding and emotions are equally receptive; a position which is manifestly absurd. Unless it be so, some men are inevitably in a better position to see this great sight, or hear this great voice, or appreciate this great revelation than others are; and the revelation made to some implies concealment from others. It becomes, then, of tremendous importance to us to know what is the disposition which most of all fits us for the reception of the divine message, and assists us to know and feel the sublime facts and promises which are freely given to us of God. It is of the first importance that we discover whether this reception depends chiefly upon the condition of our understanding or the feelings of our heart; whether Christian truth and assurance find readier access into an enlightened head than into an open heart; whether extensive information or childlike feelings, whether wide sweep of intellect or humble obedience, filial docility or submissive trust, are the surest conditions of success.

It becomes of high importance to us to ascertain this, because we may rest assured that whatever process is required to make known God's truth to the one, will virtually hide it from all the others; for that which recommends itself as desirable to the critical and highly-informed man, may be incomprehensible to the simple trusting heart; and on the other hand, that which abundantly satisfies the childlike soul, may be encumbered with difficulties to the cautious student or sceptical judge. Now Christ answered this great question for us when He said, “ He that doeth the will of My Father that is in heaven, shall know of the doctrine whether it be of God.” “How can ye believe,” said He on another occasion, “who receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only ?” In both instances the moral condition is the true pre-requisite of faith. The childlike trust of the Syro - Phenician woman, the implicit obedience which the Roman centurion felt to belong to the very essence of faith, secures the Saviour's regard, and His favourable contrast with the lean and narrow-minded learning of turbaned scribes, who by their miserable traditions and vain interpretations were making void the Law of God. “Except ye be converted and become as little children, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of God,” said He to the disciples who were striving after pre-eminence in His kingdom. The same teaching pervades the Sermon on the Mount. There, it is “the spirit” who possess the kingdom of heaven; the “mourners who are comforted;" the “meek who inherit the earth;” the “hungry who are satisfied ;" the "pure in heart who see their God:” and, in fact, throughout His ministry our Lord implies that to give His revelation to the wise, or His consolations to the satisfied, His pardon to the righteous, His healing to those who are whole, or His welcome to those who with estranged heart say they never at any time transgressed His commandments, is purely impossible, for it is to give to those who will not receive. The revelation made of the Father by the Son can only be received into childlike hearts. It is the Spirit of the Son shed abroad in the heart which makes Him known. This is a fact that has been conspicuous in every age of the Church. If wise men receive the revelation of Christ, it is not as wise and prudent men, but as little children. Their other knowledge has been illumined by their higher spiritual wisdom. When once they have gazed into the countenance of Jesus, they have found a new measure of all other knowledge. The babe can accept the great truths of the gospel as well as the strong man. The facts and truths of our moral nature, of our need, of our danger, the means of our renewal, the high inducements offered to the sincere believer in Christ, all take as free and full a possession of the little child as of the most cultivated and powerful mind. The highest revelations of God are made to our moral nature, have to do with the points in our being where we resemble Him, and are capable of bearing His image and reproducing His like

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It may be a trembling and even a mortifying thing to witness the superior moral power of the childlike mind and heart, the profounder and more

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practical knowledge of God possessed by the babe in Christ, than by the most highly cultivated man who has never known the virtue of submission, nor felt the emotions of a child, nor displayed the courage of faith. It may be very mortifying that the faculties on which we pride ourselves most highly should have comparatively so little to do with securing the greatest result; that those intellectual qualifications which have created among us a higher aristocracy than that which office, or birth, or riches, or physical strength ever conferred; that those glorious powers which are capable of threading the dark labyrinths of nature, scaling its loftiest mountains, and exploring distant worlds,—which leave no portion of the universe uninterrogated, and diligently garner all that the great fields of nature offer to the reaper of truth,should not be the qualifications by which God reveals to His children that which the eye does not see, nor the ear hear, nor even the heart conceive. It may be very mortifying when the classes of men who might, according to our feeble sight, make very short work with the ignorance of the world, hesitate so long to accept it, and perhaps at last refuse it; when the child outstrips the philosopher, even at his own business, and the humble heart knows more than the massive intellect. Yet, mortifying as it may be, nothing can be more patent. The cross is always not only the stumbling-block to the Jew, but folly to the Greek; all the world over it is the child, the young, the simple mind; the woman with her large

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