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Who gave them this wisdom? To answer this question let us turn to our favourite Book of Job on this subject, and look at chapter xxxviii. 41: “Who provideth for the raven his food, when his young ones cry unto God—they wander for lack of meat?” The Lord did; even that God who, as Bishop Hopkins so beautifully says, “provides the spray that the sparrow is to light upon, and the barleycorn for its food.”

Who would have thought, on seeing the common red poppy glowing in the wheat, (and there most undesirable,) that the seedy head of that flower, or one of its family, should exude a juice whose value (though, like every other gift of God, sadly perverted*) is not to be told. Opium, which is the poppy-juice hardened into substance, and Laudanum, which is called the tincture or wine of Opium, is capable, under God's blessing, of alleviating the sufferings of man to an amazing extent;-millions and millions of the human family have been saved from days and years of pain, just by the juice of this little flower. Think of this, dear children, and the sight of the poppy will be more than pretty to your eyes.

In South America, beneath the ground, there grows a little insignificant root, of a brownish dingy colour, held in great estimation by the natives, and called, in their tongue, Ipecacuanha, or comiting root. The blessing of this root also to man is very great. It has been known in Europe more than two centuries. Louis XIV. king of France,

• The abuse of Opium is no argument against its use.

rewarded Helvetius, who first used it in cases of dysentery, with 10001. It ranks now very high in the medical practice of our own country. But to give, at one glance, a general view of the herbary of the vegetable kingdom, suppose you take a walk to our large chemist's shop, at the house where the benevolent man of Ross used to live. Now write down in your memorandum-book the names of all the plants that have come from all quarters to furnish that window and those drawers; from the costly and invaluable quinine, or salt of bark, to the distilled fennel-water, and you will be astonished at the various countries you would have to visit, if you had yourselves to cull the flowers and leaves, or dig the roots with your own hands. You doubtless remember the little window of our shop at R. in Somersetshire, that was filled with drugs; why even that little inventory called upon Europe, Asia, Africa, and America, to make up its store: there is the rhubarb from Asia, the aloes from the Cape in Africa, the bark from America, and the red lavender from Europe.

But who gave the medicinal herbs their properties ? Even the compassionate Lord that made them. And surely on this third day, when the first parents of all the vegetable tribes came into existence in all their maturity, man's benefit, whose fall and subsequent sickness had been foreseen, was before the mind of the ever-blessed God; and gave

the herb of the field—some thereof to be food, and some thereof for medicine. And now we must consider, lastly, the vegetable kingdom as our

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GREAT FOREST, from whence may be hewn trees for the artificer, from the mountain oak to the lowly willow of the brook.

Solomon's knowledge of natural history is strikingly brought before us in that scripture, “ He spake of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon even to the hyssop that springeth from the wall,” (1 Kings iv. 33 ;) evidently marking the two extremes of vegetation—the cedar, the kingly tree among the trees of the forest, and the hyssop, the lowliest of shrubs-“a root out of a dry ground.” The mention of the cedar and the hyssop also occurs together in two other parts of scripture, and is most significant. The first in the cleansing of the leper, (Lev. xiv.;) the second in the purifying of the Israelite who had touched the dead, (Numb. xix.) In the first case, i. e. the leper's cleansing, cedar wood, hyssop, and scarlet, with a living bird, were dipped in the blood of a bird, its fellow, just slain over living water, without the camp; and then the blood was sprinkled on the leper, and he was pronounced clean, and the living bird was let loose in the open field. In the second case, cedar, hyssop, and scarlet were cast into the devouring flame which consumed the unyoked spotless red heifer, which was burned to ashes without the camp, and the ashes being mingled with living water made the water of purification from sin, which, with a bunch of hyssop, by the hands of a clean man, was sprinkled, the third and the seventh day, on the one who had touched the dead, and he was clean. In both these types or shadows, the cedar and the hyssop set forth the glory and humiliation of that blessed

sufferer, the Lord Jesus, who died as the great sacrifice without the camp,—burnt to ashes in the consuming flame,—that the unclean leper, even the wretched undone sinner, might be cleansed, and the saint who had fallen might be restored. (1 John ii. 1.)

The Cedar of Lebanonaccording to Linnæus, (Pinus Cedrus) grows up in great majesty in Lebanon, and is not known as indigenous to any other clime. Lebanon is the throne of the cedar, and the cedar is the king of the forest!—it grows to the height of 110 feet, and its branches radiate out to more than half its height-each branch itself like a tree ;-it grows well in England, and is frequently found in the parks of our nobles,-(you remember the one at Stoke Edith, near to us,)—but it does not flourish in any place like Lebanon. The property of the Cedar* is durability and fragrance; it is perhaps the most imperishable of trees, and the worm will not touch it.*

IN THE WILDERNESS, the Chittim-wood, called by some the White Thorn of the Desert, was used for the boards of the Tabernacle and all the holy vessels, and covered with the purest gold-except the Altar of Burnt Offering, the covering of which was brass. IN THE LAND, when the wandering was over, the cedar-tree took the place of the chittim-wood, and of it the beams, rafters, &c., of the Temple, and all

* See Appendix.

+ The cedars planted in the Botanical Gardens at Chelsea, in 1683, which are supposed to be the first brought to this country, are still perfectly sound. Historians record, that a beam of cedar, in the Temple of Apollo, at Ŭtica, was found perfect at the end of two thousand years.

the vessels of the Sanctuary, were formed, and then covered with gold; not, indeed, the ark—there was but one ark, both for the Tabernacle in the wilderness and the Temple, and that was made of the wood of the wilderness ; and though, when placed in its pavement of gold in the most holy place in the Temple, the staves, the symbol of its wilderness state, were taken out, yet were they left visible, resting on the golden rings. And if the Temple sets forth the final state of blessedness of the righteous, when all shall be purity, which many of the best of men have thought, then may not this symbol of the ark, both in its wood of the wilderness and the place of the staves, mark this truth, that the children of God will for ever remember that God tabernacled with them, and wandered with them through the wilderness of this world, to bring them to his resting-place-even the dwelling-place of the Most High?

Not only did Solomon build the Temple with hewn stones and the cedar, but in the Most Holy place, there was cut on the cedar, in relief, cherubim and palm-trees, which afterwards were covered over with gold;—all this was doubtless most significant. But we will now leave the cedar of Lebanon, and pass on to the other trees of the forest.

The Oak. Of all the trees of the forest that English people are acquainted with, the Oak is the greatest favourite; and where durability is desired, there is no tree, the cedar excepted, that surpasses it. In England there were once large forests of this noble tree; but our planta

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