No wonder that it should be called "Good," for it helps us to look back to the time when the best action the world has known, or can know, was done. We gaze upon the Cross, and we thank God for His unspeakable gift. One knows not which to admire the most: the Love that could smite the Well-beloved, or the Love that could, for the sake of enemies, bear the blow?
How do our readers mean to spend the day? We have no right to bind any man's conscience, and seek to have others do as we do, except they are led in the same direction, and yet we wonder how those who observe the day at all, can allow themselves to spend it in dissipation.
We are no admirer of those who make the day one of sadness and gloom.
IT IS GOOD-FRIDAY,
and we cannot understand how men can allow themselves to act as though it were Bad Friday, as though they could hear the hammer nailing Christ to the cross. A high churchman's conscience is a wonderful thing, and in nothing is it so surprising as this, that it can allow itself to act as though Jesus were slain and in His tomb! Has not the Lord Himself spoken? Let us listen to Him who speaks in rebuke to those who would darken our homes and places of worship, and cheat themselves into a sentimentality which again sees the corpse of Jesus laid in Joseph's grave.
"I AM HE THAT LIVETH AND WAS DEAD, AND BEHOLD I AM ALIVE FOR EVERMORE."
It cannot be pleasing to Jesus to be spoken of as though He was once more in the hands of His enemies.
While we regret that so many people in our country should make this day one of rioting and extravagance, we are sure that it is in some degree a reaction from the usages of those who would have us spend the day in sorrow. That which is unreal must in time become unsatisfactory, and those who would compel us to live over again the sorrows of Calvary, may drive us to football, or that which is worse! Let men once think that the church has turned actor, and they will say, "No, we will go to the theatre, for there the acting is better done."
EVERY DAY we should visit in spirit the cross of Jesus, for every day we need the merit of the atonement, and the stimulus of that example of self- forgetfulness. Let us turn away from the so-called realism which would hang the world in black, and, at the same time let us avoid those who would make this a day of revelry. There is a middle path, one upon which Christ smiles, and a path we can tread any day, and thus make it GOOD -- we mean the
PATHWAY OF SELF-SACRIFICE.
For the joy of blessing others, let us be willing to endure shame or pain. There is always pleasure to be earned by those who are willing to pay the price, -- the pleasure of unselfishness, -- but this cannot be tasted except by those who seek their highest joy in the wellbeing of others. Our risen and glorified Lord tastes this joy every day, Good-Friday not excepted, and we think it will lead us to spend the day according to His will, if we seek for ourselves all the blessings He purchased with His blood, and none more earnestly than that sanctifying Spirit who will help us to follow His blessed example, and, by caring others,
MAKE EVERY GOOD.
THE CROWN CANNOT BE