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clergyman in attendance was just closing his remarks when I stopped at the door, and after a short but eloquent pause in the services, for silence is always eloquent in the house of mourning, the afflicted father rose, and overcoming the emotion with which he struggled, spoke a few words to the friends that surrounded him. It was unusual, to me altogether singular, for a parent thus to obtrude his grief upon the ear of the multitude, and the effect was therefore, on my mind, unfavorable; but a moment dispelled the feeling, as he spoke, not of his sorrows, but of the consolation which a kind Providence had mingled with the bitterness of his grief. He had a family of sons growing up around him, and, said he, "a few months ago one of them removed to the other side of the river, and resides on the shore in view of the spot where we are assembled. And now I find that my thoughts are over there far more frequently than they were before. I had friends there whom I loved, and I had an interest in the people, but I had no son there; but since that child has been a resident beyond the river, my heart is there often and loves to be there. So it has been with me during the few days that have passed since this other son crossed the river of death and, as I trust, has entered into heaven. My thoughts are often there now. True, I had friends there before, a Father there; but I had no child. Now I have an interest in heaven, such as I never felt till one of my own children went there to live!"
It was a sweet thought. As I left the door and walked down the avenue, I looked across the water, and the fields in the freshness of opening spring were smiling in the rays of the declining sun, and it struck me that that must be a pleasant land in which to live, and a pleasant spot for a father to look upon as the dwellingplace of his son. And then it was natural, after what I had heard, to say:
"Sweet fields beyond the swelling flood Stand dressed in living green; So to the Jews old Canaan stood, While Jordan rolled between." The attractions of heaven! Who, that has ever read, can forget the beauty of those conceptions with which the mind of Dr. Nevins was filled after his wife was taken to glory? We thought his mind was much on heaven before. He often spoke of it and wrote of it; but when one whom he loved so tenderly was introduced into its society, he thought there were attractions in heaven of which he had no previous comprehension. He had such an interest in it as he had not felt till then.
The husband of Wilberforce's sister, in a let
ter to that great and good man, years after her decease, speaks of the return of the day on which she entered heaven as a day of peculiar joy to the spirits that welcomed her to their bright company. He seemed to think that heaven must be a happier place for angels since one so lovely had joined them; certainly he loved heaven more, and so must they.
But there was something in the thought of the bereaved father that had touched my heart, and made an impression not soon to be effaced. It was a similar thought that the Saviour gave to his disciples when he said, "I go to prepare a place for you, that where I am there ye may be also." The thought of re-union should comfort them while asunder, and the fact that Jesus was in heaven should be its chief attraction. So to every believer the presence of Christ is the crowning glory of heaven, and not the least of its anticipated joys is the meeting of those who have gone before.
"Oh, talk to me of heaven! I love
To hear about my home above;
For there doth many a loved one dwell,
In light and joy ineffable."
And though it is not to me a matter of the least importance whether or not in that better world the friendships of earth will be renewed in the purity of holiness and the strength of immortality, yet it is a source of well-founded hope that love is the native element of heaven, and that attachments formed or reformed there will never be dissolved.
"There is a world above,
Where parting is unknown;
Formed for the good alone;
And faith beholds the dying here,
So when the fond parent commits to the dust the ashes of a beloved child, he follows, by faith, his spirit ascending to the innumerable company of the redeemed; he enters with him into the enjoyments of angels and saints; he becomes more familiar with the delights of heaven; in the midst of his daily cares, and especially when the calmness of evening settles on his dwelling, his heart wanders from earth and is at home with his child in glory. The parent is thus drawn upward, and the ties that fastened him to earth are weakened. He finds it good to be afflicted, and while one he loves so tenderly is there, he is ready to sing—
"Oh weep not for the friends that pass
As breezes sweep the withered grass
BY REV. ROBERT BAIRD.
THE view of Geneva and the country surrounding it, obtained from the summit of one of the neighboring mountains, is of surpassing beauty. The fertile plain, cultivated in every part, and crossed by the winding Rhone, with that beautiful expanse of water, which poets have sung and philosophers praised, and the distant towns and villages with which those fields and the shores of that lake are studded,-are contrasted with the magnificence of the huge Alps, which appear like heavy clouds behind, with their peaks, their glaciers, and, highest of all, the snow-clad Mont Blanc.
The city of Geneva is situated in the midst of the valley which is bounded on one side by the regular range of the Juras, and on the other by the Alps. It stands at one end of Lake Leman, and is traversed by the Rhone. It is of very ancient history, being mentioned by Cæsar in his commentaries, as "the extreme city of the Allobroges, and the nearest to the Helvetian territory." Throughout the middle ages, it was generally an Imperial city, forming part of the Germanic Empire; but, at the epoch of the Reformation, it was a free town. It was more than once besieged by the Duke of Savoy, but was rescued by the Bernese, who sent their forces to aid it. As the refuge of Protestants from France, and other countries, and the centre of the French Reformation, it has since become so famous as to receive the title of "Protestant Rome." It preserved its independence, though its territory was restricted to the city itself, till year 1798, when it was annexed, together with a great part of Switzerland, to France. By the treaty of Vienna, in 1814, a small territory surrounding it, partly French and partly Savoyard, was given to it, and it was joined to the Confederation of Switzerland, of which it till then had formed no part, under the name of the City and Canton of Geneva. Its government, of republican form, is composed principally of two Councils, the greater and smaller. It has recently undergone some slight revolutions, and its constitution has been remodeled. The arms of the city represent the half of an eagle, with a key, and this inscription: "Post tenebras lux ;" (after darkness, light.)
By the augmentation of its territory, a great number of Roman Catholics were added to its population; and, of the 60,000 which the Can
ton and City now contain, about 36,000 are Protestants, and 24,000 Catholics.* The religion of the State is nominally Protestant; but it has degenerated from the doctrines bequeathed to it by Calvin, Tarel, and other Reformers, into Socinianism. There are, however, several faithful pastors connected with the state; but it is to the dissenting Church of Geneva that such men as Merle d'Aubigné, Gaussen, Malan, and other distinguished theologians belong.
Geneva is situated on both sides of the Rhone, just where it issues from the Lake Leman, as well as on an island in that river. On one side it is bordered by the Lake; and the others are surrounded by double ramparts and ditches, which have been converted into beautiful promenades and gardens. The most wealthy and populous part of the city is on the southern side. There, on the brow of a hill, stands the fine old Cathedral, in which Calvin preached; and there part of his pulpit is still preserved. The dwelling of this great Reformer is still pointed out; but his grave is unknown and undistinguished, in the cemetery.
The city possesses, among other interesting buildings, an excellent public library, containing, with a great number of rare books, an invaluable collection of ancient manuscripts. There are many volumes of manuscripts and autographs of the great Reformers. The Gallery of Paintings is very interesting and precious; in it may be found many masterpieces of the Genevese artists, some of whom are quite distinguished. The Botanical Gardens are extensive, and were laid out under the supervision of celebrated botanists.
The environs of Geneva have become celebrated as the retreats of some of the greatest writers, philosophers and naturalists, that Europe has produced. The names of Voltaire, Rousseau, Gibbon, Necker, De Stael, Byron, De Saussure, De Candolles, Sismondi, and others, have rendered famous the villas and villages which are seen on every side. One of the most celebrated of these, the Chateau of Voltaire, at Ferney, is worthy of some notice.
The village of Ferney is situated at about three miles from the gate of Geneva, on the side
By far the greater part of the Catholics are in the Canton, not in the City proper, which contains kut me Catholic church.
towards France. In the midst of a fine garden, with a magnificent prospect of the whole country surrounding it, stands the dwelling of Voltaire. Two rooms are still preserved as he left them his parlor and bedroom. The despicable vanity of this great but corrupt man is displayed in a miserable painting, hung over the door of his bedroom, and which was executed by his orders It depicts him as presented by Henry IV. to Apollo, who places a crown upon his head; fame is sounding his praises abroad, and demons are tormenting his enemies. His bedroom contains this inscription, written in large letters on the wall: "His heart is here, but his spirit is everywhere!"
The authoress of "Corinne," Madame de Stael, resided on the bank of the Lake; her grave is pointed out in the beautiful garden surrounding her chateau. The widow of one of her sons, the late Baron de Stael, occupies it at present. On the brow of a hill on the south side of the Lake, and about a mile from the city, is seen the Villa Diodati, Lord Byron's home; the scenery surrounding which he has described with the peculiar beauty of his verse.
The society of Geneva is very delightful; for the Genevese usually display all the frankness of the Swiss, and the vivacity of the French character; commonly mingled with a little national vanity, peculiar to themselves, and certainly very pardonable. Education, among the lower classes, is pretty general; that is, with those who are of Genevese birth and extraction; for, from the great immigration of ignorant Savoyards into the city and territory, a large portion of the laboring classes of the population have not even had the most common instruction. The higher classes usually receive quite a thorough education. The Academy, or, as we should call it, the University of the city, is an excellent institution; and generally a young man is there taught not only the classics and various sciences, but one or more modern languages besides his native French.
But by far the most interesting institution in Geneva, to one who takes a deep interest in the progress of true religion, is the new Theological School, at the head of which stands the celebrated Dr. Merle d'Aubigné, the eloquent author of "The Great Reformation of the Sixteenth Century." A brief notice of the circumstances which led to the opening of this School may not be unacceptable to our readers.
About the middle of the last century, a species of cold semi-Pelagian Christianity began to usurp the place of the glorious doctrines of the
Reformation in the Church of Geneva-a legitimate fruit of its unhallowed alliance with the State. From that epoch till the end of that century, error gradually and steadily made progress, until, in the commencement of the present, the monstrous heresies of Arianism, Socinianism, and Rationalism, or Neology, became fully developed and established. So great and so universal was the declension from the truth that there was not, probably, one pastor in active service in the city or Canton, in the year 1817, who was sound in the faith. Great was the effect upon the spiritual interests of the Church, and upon the morals of the city, of this sad departure from the blessed doctrines of the Gospel.
In 1817, it pleased God to bring Cæsar Malan, and several other young men, to the knowledge of the truth. This was the commencement of the resuscitation of true religion which we now behold in that ancient city. Through the efforts of these men, two independent chapels were opened, one within the city (in the Bourg-deFour), and one without (at the Pré-l'Evêque), in which the doctrines of pure and primitive Christianity were proclaimed; nor were they proclaimed in vain. Since that time it has pleased God to raise up a few faithful ministers in the National Church of Geneva, most of whom, such as Diodati, Duby, Barde, remain in it. One, however, of the most distinguished was expelled from it about fifteen years ago: this is the celebrated and excellent Dr. Gaussen. To his deposition, the new Theological School owes its existence; for upon its occurrence, some wealthy and pious laymen in that city, seeing no security for evangelical religion in the Established Church, resolved to found an Evangelical Society, for promoting the truth, upon the voluntary principle, both in their midst and vicinity, and also in France. This Society was formed in 1831. One of its first enterprises was the founding of a Theological Seminary. This was absolutely necessary, inasmuch as the men who sit in Calvin's seat in the Genevan Synagogue, have, each in his own way, departed from the faith that saves. The first two Professors who were appointed in this new Institution were Dr. Merle d'Aubigné, a native of that city, but who had been residing five or six years in Hamburg, and five or six at Brussels, whence the Belgian Revolution had driven him, and M. Gaussen, of whom we have just spoken. Almost at the same time, the late lamented Steiger, the friend and pupil of Tholuck, was appointed, in the department of Biblical literature. A few years ago, the Theological Faculty