_ __ __
RICHARD NEWTON, D.D.,
AUTHOR OF THE SAJ-E COMPASS," ETC.
ALEXANDER HISLOP & COMPANY.
ID you ever see a casket of jewels ? Per-
haps you are ready to ask, What is a
casket? It is a little box, made on
purpose to keep jewels in. Suppose we have one
here before us. We open it. Here is a diamond
flashing and sparkling in its beauty, with little
rainbows dancing round it. There is a pearl
quietly shining in its silvery whiteness. Here
is a ruby with its deep red colour; an emerald
with its bright sea-green; a sapphire with its
soft sky-blue; a purple amethyst; a yellow topaz;
and an opal with its varying hues. They are all
glittering in the light, though each shines with a
colour different from all the rest. How beautiful
they look !
This book is intended to be like such a box.
It is a casket filled with Bible jewels. The first
we meet with is "the Pearl of great price." This
represents Jesus. There is next the diamond,
which represents the true Christian. The ruby,
with its flashing red, represents the love which
real Christians have for their precious Saviour and
all His people. The emerald, with its beautiful
green, reminds us of the blessed hope of heaven
which Jesus puts into the hearts of His people.
The purple amethyst is the temperance jewel.
The sky-blue sapphire reminds us of the faith
which makes true Christians strong to serve and
strong to suffer. The topaz, with its golden yellow,
stands for the true honesty of those who are always
trying to please God; while other beautiful stones,
in which all the colours of the other jewels blend
together, represent prayer, which "brings every
blessing from above."
Natural jewels are so valuable that many of us
can never afford to buy them. Nor is this neces-
sary, for we can be happy without them. But
these Bible jewels are a thousand times more
valuable, and without them we cannot be happy.
Yet, valuable as they are, the poorest person who
reads this book, whether young or old, may become
the owner of all the Bible jewels of which it speaks.
And this is the reason why this book was written.
The hope and prayer of the writer is, that every
one who reads these pages may try to get all these
precious Bible jewels. Try first to get Jesus-
the Pearl of great price. And when He is yours,
ask Him to give you all the other jewels here
described. They belong to Jesus. He has them
to give away. He will give them to all who
earnestly ask for them. Ask Him to give them
to you. Then how rich and happy, how good and
useful, you will be And when Jesus shall come
to "make up His jewels" you will be gathered
with them, and will shine in beauty for ever
among the bright and glorious things of His
MY JEWELS, 9
THE PEARL, 36
THE DIAMOND, 59
THE AMETHYST, 101
THE AMETHYST, 121
THE EMERALD, .140
THE SAPPHIRE,. .161
THE TOPAZ, 180
THE AGATE, 201
Malachi iii. 17.
HIS is what God calls his people. He
is speaking of all true Christians-of all
persons who really learn to love and
serve Jesus-when he uses this language. It is
wonderful to notice how many different kinds of
things God compares his people to in the Bible.
In one place they are compared to trees, as the
cedar or the palm-tree. In another place they are
compared to flowers, like the rose and the lily.
Again, they are compared to the stars, and to the
sun. In one place they are compared to the spark-
ling dew-drops, that stand so thick on the flowers
of the garden, on a fine summer morning, and
make the whole garden look so fresh and beauti-
ful. In other places they are compared to the
light which the sun is pouring forth all the time,
and which enables us to see the many wonderful
things with which God has filled the world around
us. They are compared to the dove, because it is
harmless; to the lamb, because it is gentle; to the
lion, because it is bold; and to the eagle, because
it is a noble bird that tries to get above the world,
and to rise far away up towards the sun. But, in
this passage from the prophet Malachi, God com-
pares his people to jewels. He says, They shall
be mine in that day when I make up my jewels."
Jewels are considered to be the most valuable
things that a person can have. Sometimes they
are made of gold and silver, and sometimes of
pearls, or diamonds, or other precious stones.
Kings and queens, lords and ladies, and other great
and rich people put jewels on their fingers, round
their necks, or in their bosoms, and wear them for
ornaments. And just in the same way God says
his people shall be to Him for "a crown of glory
and a diadem of beauty." What a blessed thing
it will be to be one of the jewels in the crown
that Jesus wears, or to lie in His bosom shining
like a diamond! And yet, if we really love and
serve Him, He tells us in this text that we shall
be his jewels.
There are a great many precious stones men-
tioned in the Bible. Each of these may be con-
sidered as representing some important part of
Christian character or duty; and it seems to me
that if we take up these jewels, they will furnish
us with an interesting and instructive subject for
a volume. This subject, then, we may call BIBLE
In our present text, God's people are compared
to jewels. This first chapter will lead us to con-
sider some reasons why Christians are like jewels.
I wish now to give you three reasons why they
In the first place, Christians are like jewels,
because jewels are VERY BEAUTIFUL.
God never made anything that looks more
lovely than some jewels do. When you hold up a
diamond in the light of the sun, or even of a lamp,
and move it about, it flashes and sparldes most
beautifully. And if we had a number of them to-
gether, as they are sometimes seen in a monarch's
crown, or a lady's head-dress, in a strong light, they
would glitter and shine so that we could hardly
bear to look at them. They would seem to have
little rainbows dancing all about them. We should
see all the colours of the rainbow glittering and
sparkling there. But these beauties are not in the
jewels so much as in the light which shines upon
them. If it were not for the light, you would see
nothing of the beauty. Suppose it were as dark
as midnight here, I might hold up ten thousand
diamonds, if I had them, and yet there would be no
beauty for you to see. Not a trace of brightness
would sparkle in one of them. We sometimes read
stories about dark caves, in which great jewels
are put up, instead of lamps, for the purpose of
lighting them up. But this is a mistake. Jewels
have no beauty in themselves. They have no
power of their own to shine. It is only when
light, outside of themselves, is thrown upon them
that their beauty can be seen. But when the
bright beams of the sun shine upon them they
appear very beautiful.
And just so it is with Christians, who are
God's jewels. They are very beautiful. But this
beauty is not their own. It does not belong to
themselves. It all comes from Jesus. When they
learn to know Him, and love Him, and serve Him,
they become like Him, and this is what makes
them beautiful. Jesus is called in the Bible "the
Sun of Righteousness." He gives light to his
people, just as the sun gives light to the world.
He shines on the souls of his people, and this
makes them look beautiful as diamonds and other
jewels do, when the sun is shining on them. And
the stronger the light is that falls on a jewel, the
more beautiful it appears. If, instead of the light
of a lamp, you hold a diamond in the beams of
the sun, it will sparkle with a hundred times more
beauty. And so the nearer we get to Jesus, and
the more we know of Him and love Him, the
more beautiful we shall become. N,
SYou remember what we read in the Bible about
Moses. He went up to the top of Mount Sinai
once, and he was there for forty days, seeing Jesus
all the time, and talking with Him. And, when he
came down, his face was shining with so much
brightness and beauty, that the people could not
bear to look at him. The sight of his face dazzled
their eyes, like looking at the sun. Moses had to
put a veil over his face, and cover it up, before the
people could come near enough to talk with him.
And you remember, too, what we read in the
New Testament about Jesus on the Mount of
Transfiguration. His disciples looked at Him, just
as you and I have sometimes looked at what is
called a dissolving view, in a magic-lantern. They
saw a wonderful change come over Him. The
appearance of Him, which they were accustomed
to see, melted away, and another form or appear-
ance gradually took its place. His face grew
brighter and brighter, till it was shining with a
light above the brightness of the sun. His cloth-
ing changed, too. It all turned white, and kept
on growing more and more pure, till it was whiter
than the spotless snow. And Jesus underwent
this change, and put on this beautiful appearance,
on purpose to show us what the beauty is which
He intends to put on all his people. Yes, my dear
young friends, if you and I are true Christians, we
shall be made at last to look just' as Jesus did
when He was on that mountain. One of these days
Jesus is going to come into our world again. He
will come to gather his jewels together. This
means that He will come to raise his people out of
their graves, and take them to be for ever with Him
in his heavenly kingdom. And when Jesus comes
to do this, He will appear just as his disciples saw
Him on the Mount of Transfiguration. And all his
MY JE WELS.
people will be made like Him then. They will all
be wearing the same snow-white garments that
Jesus wore on the mount. Their faces will all be
shining brighter than the sun, as his did. Oh,
how brightly God's jewels will sparkle then! How
beautiful they will appear! We often see great
beauty, now, in the flowers, the rainbow, the sky;
but it fades while we look at it, and very soon it is
all gone. Even the beauty of the transfiguration
did not last. But the beauty that Jesus will give
to his people, when He comes again, will be lasting
beauty. It will never fade. On the contrary, it
will grow brighter and brighter for ever. Jewels
are very beautiful. This is one reason why God
calls his people jewels.
But jewels are VERY VALUABLE; and this is
another reason why God calls his people jewels.
It is because of their value that we call them
precious stones. Very often a single jewel will be
worth more than many a rich man's whole fortune.
You remember the Bible speaks of a man finding
" one pearl, of great price," and then selling all that
he had in order to purchase that pearl.
We read of a nobleman in England, sometime
ago, who had a suit of clothes made to wear on
special occasions. It was what is called a Court-
dress. He only used to put it on when the Queen
had great companies of the nobility at her palace.
But there were so many jewels on that one suit of
clothes that it was worth a hundred thousand
A young friend of mine, now travelling in Europe,
wrote home the other day that he saw, while visit-
ing the royal gallery in the city of Dresden, a
necklace of jewels that was said to be worth five
hundred thousand pounds. In the same place is
a small casket of jewels valued at four millions.
But, to show you what very valuable things
jewels are, let me tell you about some of the most
celebrated diamonds in the world.
One of these is called the Orloff Diamond, or
the Grand Russian Diamond. This is about as
large as a walnut. It belongs to the Emperor of
Russia. Its lustre is very fine, but it is a little
defective in shape. It is valued at over a hundred
thousand pounds. There are two stories told about
this diamond. One is, that it used to belong to a
Persian prince, who called it "the Moon of the
Mountain." It is said that somebody murdered
the prince, and then stole all his jewels, and
among them this great diamond, which, after many
changes, came into the hands of the Empress
Catherine of Russia, and has since been kept in
The other story is that this beautiful gem was
once used as one of the eyes of an idol in the
temple of Brahma. I don't know what he had for
his other eye; but certainly one of his eyes must
have been much brighter and more beautiful than
the other. Well, there it was, for many a year,
flashing and sparkling most splendidly. The fame
of this wonderful bright-eyed god spread all over
the country. A French soldier, in the garrison at
Pondicherry, made up his mind to try and get it.
He deserted from the army. He went to the
priests of this temple, and professed his desire to
become a convert to the worship of their god. He
remained with them a long time, till he gained
their confidence, and was appointed to some post
of duty about the temple. Then he watched for
an opportunity, and got into the temple alone one
night, when he climbed up on the shoulders of the
idol, forced out his bright-jewelled eye, and went
off with it. He escaped to Madras, and sold it to
a sea-captain for fifty thousand francs. After pass-
ing through different hands, a Greek merchant
finally sold it to the Empress Catherine. The
price she paid the merchant for it was ninety
thousand pounds cash down, five thousand a year
as long as he lived, and also a title of nobility.
She made him a lord, or a duke, or something
of that kind.
There- is another great diamond, called the
Austrian, or Grand Tuscan Diamond. It has be-
longed to the family of the Emperor of Austria
for many generations. It is cut in the form of a
rose. -It has nine sides, each presenting a star
with nine rays. But it has a kind of yellowish
tint, which makes it less valuable than it would
otherwise be. Yet that single jewel is supposed
to be worth about a hundred and sixty thousand
Another of the celebrated diamonds of the
world is called the Pitt Diamond, or the Regent.
It is not the largest, but is said to be the most
perfect and beautiful diamond in Europe. When
it was cut or polished it took two years' time to
do it, and the work cost three thousand pounds.
The fragments broken off from it in cutting were
worth several thousands. It is called the Pitt
Diamond; because, when first brought from the
East Indies, it was bought by Mr Thomas Pitt,
the grandfather of the celebrated statesman. It is
called the Regent Diamond, because, when Mr
Pitt sold it, it was bought by the Duke of Orleans,
who was then the Regent, or reigning Prince of
France. When Napoleon I. was Emperor of France
it belonged to him. He used to wear it on the
hilt of his sword. Once he had to pawn it to raise
money to pay his soldiers. Now, it is set in the
crown of the Emperor of France, and sparkles
Another famous diamond is called The Star of
the South. This belongs to the King of Portugal.
There is an interesting story connected with the
finding of this precious gem. A good many years
ago Brazil, in South America, which is now an
independent government, used to belong to the
King of Portugal. In those days three men had
done something to offend the king. As a punish-
ment, they were banished to a place in the interior
of Brazil. They were never to go home again to
their families, but were to stay there till they
died. The part of the country to which they were
sent was very rich in gold and jewels. Every
river rolled over a bed of gold, and every valley
was a sort of diamond mine. But they could not
live on gold, and jewels would not take the place
of their families and friends; and so the banished
men were very unhappy. They longed to go back
to their homes. But how could this be done ? It
occurred to them that if they could only find some
very rich mine of gold, or some very large, valu-
able jewel, perhaps' the king would pardon them,
and let them go back to their homes. Then they
went to work. For six long years they toiled on
without success. But one summer there came a
long, severe drought. It hardly rained any all the
season. The 'stream near which they lived dried
up. They went into the bed of the river to dig
for gold. While digging there they found the
largest diamond they had ever seen. It was over
an ounce in weight. They knew it was exceed-
ingly valuable. They were filled with joy. They
ventured to go home with this precious gem.
They sent it to the King of Portugal in Lisbon.
He was so delighted with it that he pardoned the
men, and let them stay at home. This was the
famous "Star of the South." The king had a
hole bored through it, and used to wear it round
his neck on holidays. It has since been cut into
a beautiful eight-sided jewel. In a French work
on the subject of jewels, which I have, it is said
that this diamond is supposed to be worth the
surprising sum of three millions of pounds.
Another of these celebrated diamonds is called
the Koh-i-noor, or "Mountain of Light." This
now belongs to Queen Victoria. It is said to have
been found in the mines of Golconda, more than a
thousand years before the birth of our Saviour.
During all these many centuries it is said to
have been in the possession of different rajahs
or princes in India, and many stories are told
Once an Indian prince had conquered another.
The conquered prince owned this gem, and wore
it in his turban or head-dress. The conqueror saw
it flashing in its beauty there. He proposed to
the conquered prince that they should exchange
turbans in token of friendship. The poor fellow
was very unwilling to do this; but he knew it
would cost him his life if he refused. So he made
the exchange, but lost that splendid jewel.
There was another occasion when one Indian
prince had conquered another in battle. The con-
quered prince was known to be the owner of the
Koh-i-noor. The conqueror invited him to his
palace. When he came, he was told that he never
should go out again till he gave up his jewel to
his conqueror. He had expected this; and to be
prepared for it, he had a counterfeit, or imitation
of the real jewel made. This he pretended to be
very loath to part with, yet finally gave it up.
Then he was set at liberty. The other prince was
delighted to think of his great treasure; but when
he gave it to his jeweller, to set it for him, he told
him it was a counterfeit, and not the real jewel.
Then he went to the palace of the prince who had
deceived him, and tried to find the great diamond.
He ransacked the palace, but could not find it.
Finally, one of the prince's slaves told him where
it was hid, and the Koh-i-noor-the "Mountain
of Light "-was found hidden away under a heap
of ashes. But at last the English army conquered
a part of India called the Punjaub. The prince
of that country owned this celebrated diamond,
and he was obliged to give it up to the Queen of
England, and now it shines and sparkles among
the crown jewels of that kingdom.
Now we see, from what has been said, how very
valuable jewels are. But perhaps some of you are
ready to say, "Well, what is all this to us ? We
have no such jewels as these.'V
>Nay, but you have, though. Every one of you
has a jewel worth more than the Koh-i-noor, and
the Star of the South, and all those costly gems
put together. I mean by this your soul. The
soul of the youngest child here is worth more than
all the gold and silver, and all the diamonds and
rubies and gems and jewels in the world. Jesus
said that if a man should gain the whole-world,
and lose his soul by it, he would make a very bad
bargain. Jesus knows what the soul is worth, for
He made it; and when it was lost He paid the
price that was required to redeem it or save it.
That price was his own precious blood. He shed
this on the cross for us. And this shows us how
very valuable our souls are. This is a very good
reason why God should call his people jewels.
He does it because they are very valuable.
The third reason why Christians are like jewels
is because they ARE HARD TO POLISH.
Many diamonds, when they are found, have
some stain or speck upon them, and they almost
all have a rusty sort of coating, which must be
taken off before their real beauty and brilliance
can be seen. But this is a very hard thing to do.
You know the diamond is one of the hardest
things in the world. It is. harder than iron, or
steel, or stone. It is so hard that it will write on
glass. It is so hard that nothing can be used to
polish it but powder made out of diamonds.
The men who polish diamonds and other jewels
are called lapidaries. Lapis is the Latin word for
a stone; and a lapidary means one who works in
jewels or precious stones. If we should go into
the workshop of a lapidary, we should see a great
variety of machinery which is used in polishing
jewels. Most of these are solid wheels made of
hard wood or iron. They are about an inch or an
inch and a-half thick, and about a foot wide.
They are like thin, small grindstones. They are
so arranged that they can be made to turn round
very fast. Then the diamond which is to be cut
or polished is fixed very tight on the end of a
piece of wood, so that one side of the diamond at
a time can be held very steadily against the wheel
while it is flying round rapidly, just as you have
seen the scissors-grinder hold the scissors he is
sharpening against the grindstone. But the dia-
mond is so hard that this grinding sort of work
has to be kept up a long time before the polishing
is finished. It takes months of this sort of work
to polish a diamond. The Pitt Diamond, of which
we have already spoken, took two years' time to
polish. So you see that polishing jewels is very
hard work. And this is a very good reason why
Christians are called jewels, for they have to be
polished too, and it is hard work with them, just
as it is with jewels.
MY JEW ELS.
When we become Christians we are like dia-
monds, as they are found in the mines. There
are specks or stains on us, which must be removed
by polishing. These specks and stains mean the
bad habits we have formed, which must be broken
up; or the bad tempers we have indulged, and
which must be overcome. But there is one great
difference here between diamonds and Christians,
or between men's jewels and God's jewels. When
a man is polishing a jewel, the jewel can't help
him. It has nothing to do. But if we are God's
jewels, when He is polishing us we must help Him;
there is something for us to do. And God won't
carry on the work of polishing us, or making us
better, unless we try to help Him. Let me try to
show you what I mean.
Edward Norton was a good Christian boy. He
was one of God's jewels. But there was quite a
big speck on this jewel. He had a bad temper.
A little thing would often make him very angry.
He was fond of reading about the great conquerors
spoken of in history. His mother tried to show
him how he might become a greater conqueror
than they. Every morning, for a whole week, she
made him repeat this verse: He that ruleth his
own spirit is greater than he that taketh a city."
At the same time she taught him to pray to God
for grace to help him to resist the temptation to
get angry, and for power to rule his own spirit.
One day, after they had been talking about this
verse, Edward was playing with some boys. A
dispute arose between them. One of them called
Edward a fool, laughed at him, and made fun of
him. In a moment Edward grew red in the face.
The fire began to flash from his eyes. He was
just doubling up his fist, and raising his hand to
strike a blow, when he suddenly stopped. He
thought of what his mother had said about con-
quering his spirit. In a moment the silent prayer
went up from his heart, "Lord help me to over-
come this angry spirit." God heard that prayer,
and helped him. No angry blow was struck. No
angry word was spoken. He ruled his own spirit.
And when he went home and told his mother
about it, she threw her arms round his neck, and
kissed him, and told him that he had gained a
more glorious victory that day than any that Alex-
ander, or Caesar, or Napoleon ever gained. That
was true. And when Edward Norton was resist-
ing that temptation, and trying to overcome his
angry temper, he was helping God to polish one
of his jewels, and remove an ugly speck from it.
MY JE WELLS.
Let me tell you now about another little boy
who helped to polish one of these jewels. This
boy's name was Willie. He was trying to be a
Christian. The spot on this jewel was not that of
an angry, but of a selfish, spirit. He liked to have
his own way, and indulge, and please himself
better than any one else. One Saturday Willie
came home from school and said they were to have
holiday for a week. His mother told him that
on Monday afternoon she was going to send their
man Dennis with the waggon to a village six miles
off, and that if he were a good boy, and the weather
were fine, he might go along with him. Willie
was delighted with the prospect of such a fine,
long ride, for he loved riding above all things.
The next day, while in church and Sunday-
school, Willie could hardly keep from thinking
about that ride, and wishing that Monday after-
noon would come.
On Sunday evening, while sitting by his mother,
he said: Mother, the minister talked to us in
Sunday-school to-day about self-denial. And he
said that the more we denied ourselves for the
good of others the happier we should feel. Now,
is that really so ?"
It is, Willie," said his mother. "The Bible
tells us, 'It is more blessed to give than to re-
ceive;' and that we must 'take up our cross daily,
and follow Christ.'"
Then I feel that I have been a very selfish
little boy; for I don't like to deny myself anything.
I ate all those oranges myself, the other day,
although I knew that Johnny Maloney would have
been very glad of one, for he has just got over the
fever, and I remember how good they tasted when
I was getting well, after I was sick last winter."
I'm glad, Willie, to find you have been thinking
of this matter. If you wish to find out whether
the minister's words are true, try it for yourself.
Do something to deny yourself, the first chance
you have, and see if you don't feel happier for it."
Well, Monday morning came. It was a bright,
clear, beautiful day. Willie was in fine spirits,
thinking about the ride he was to have in the
afternoon. The morning seemed very long. He
thought it never would be gone. He didn't know
what to do with himself all the time. He got
tired of staying in the sitting-room, so he thought
he would go into the kitchen and see Mrs Maloney,
Ah Master Willie," she cried, "how well
you're looking this morning! And what a fine
colour you have in your cheeks Here's my poor
Johnny as pale as the sheet I'm washing, ever
since the fever left him. The doctor says he ought
to take a ride now and then, and go out into the
country a bit; but the likes o' me that has to
wash for a living can't do that at all, at all."
A sudden thought darted into Willie's mind;
and hardly stopping to answer, he hurried out into
the yard. Then he walked up and down awhile,
with a slow step. His face had an anxious and
troubled look. A great conflict was going on in
Willie's mind. The question was whether he
should indulge himself, or deny himself. It was a
conflict like that famous one which the great
Cesar had on the banks of the Rubicon. All at
once he stopped walking, and came to a dead halt.
He planted his foot down firmly on the ground,
and said, "I'll do it! I'll do it !"
Then he ran into the house. "Mother," said he,
"Johnny Maloney is. down stairs; and he looks
so pale and thin, that I think the ride into the
country will do him more good than it will me;
and as there is only room for one, I'm going to let
him take my place, if you are willing."
Most certainly, my dear boy," said his mother,
as she clasped him in her arms and gave him a
hearty kiss. Willie flew to tell Mrs Maloney of
his decision; and when the waggon drove up to the
door, he stood nobly by while Johnny was lifted
up on the high seat by the side of Dennis. As he
watched them ride out of sight, both smiles and
tears were seen on Willie's face. It seemed doubt-
ful, for a while, which would gain the day; but at
last he dashed away the tears, and the smiles got the
victory. Then he went cheerfully away and spent
the afternoon in doing some errands for his mother.
At night, Willie's mother was sitting by the
side of his bed before he went to sleep. She put
her hand fondly on his little curly head, and said,
"You have made me very happy, dear Willie, to-day,
by trying to practise so soon the lesson we were
talking about yesterday. It was a great act of
self-denial for you to give up the ride which you
had been expecting with so much pleasure. But
tell me now, Willie, do you feel happier or not for
staying at home to let Johnny go ?"
Why, I feel happier than if I had taken the
best ride in the world. And you say it made
you happy, too; and I know Mrs Maloney and
Johnny were happy; and so only think how much
happiness it caused. I'm sure I don't want to be
Willie slept very sweetly that night. What a
noble little fellow he was If he kept on in that
way he would soon get the stain out of his
jewel, and have it looking very bright and
But these jewels are not always polished only
for the sake of removing specks from them. They
are often cut, and polished on purpose to make
them look more beautiful. If a large diamond is
to be put on the crown of some great king, it is
only by cutting and polishing that it can be made
to shine with all its brilliance. When you look at
a diamond, you see that it has many faces or sides.
These don't belong to diamonds naturally. When
they are found in the mines they have none of
these smooth faces. They are then like little
pebble-stones, without any particular shape. These
smooth, even sides are made by the jeweller, or
lapidary, by grinding and polishing. And they
are made on purpose to make the diamond look
more beautiful. And just in the same way God
cuts and polishes his jewels, in order to make them
shine more brightly and beautifully in the crown
of his glory in heaven.
Sometimes we see good Christian people who
have very heavy trials which they are obliged to
bear for many years. And when we see them
bearing those trials we often wonder what it is all
for. But the meaning of it is, that God is using
those trials, just as the lapidary uses the files and
wheels, to polish his jewels so as to make them
brighter and more beautiful in heaven. There was
that poor beggar at the gate of the rich man, of
whom we read in the New Testament. He was
left to be so poor, and to have all those dreadful
sores, not because God couldn't help it. He could
easily have made him a rich man, and have kept
him from having any sores at all, if he had pleased.
But he was one of God's jewels, and God was
making use of his poverty and beggary and sores,
in order to polish that jewel and make it shine
more beautifully in heaven.
I was reading lately about a Christian woman
who was kept on a sick bed, entirely unable to
help herself, for twenty years. She had no use
of her limbs. She was blind and dumb, and suf-
fered dreadful pains. She lost her father and four
brothers, and was left alone in the world. Yet she
was always cheerful and happy. Before she lost
her voice she used to say that she wouldn't alter
any of those trials if she could, because God sent
them and He knew what was best. She was one
of God's jewels, and He was using all those trials
to make her happier and more beautiful in heaven
for ever. And if this is the way in which God
prepares his people for heaven, then they may well
be compared to jewels, because they are hard to
vMy dear young readers, I want you all to love
Jesus and serve Him. Then you will be his jewels.
And every jewel must be polished before it is fit
for the jeweller to set it in the ring or crown for
which it is intended. And it is just so with God's
jewels. They all need polishing. And the church
and Sunday-school are God's workshop. God is
like a great jeweller or lapidary. In every church
and Sunday-school He has jewels which He wants
to have polished. And He makes use of ministers
and teachers to help Him in polishing his jewels.
But then the jewels must take hold of the work,
and help, too. The hymn we sometimes sing, says:
"There is something in heaven for children to do."
And that's true. But there is something for you
to do here too. You are God's jewels, but you
need polishing. This is hard work, and you must
help to do it, or it will never be done. You must
find out what your bad habits or bad tempers
are, and then try to overcome them. These are
the specks or stains on your jewels; and these
must be polished off. The speck on Edward
Norton's jewel was a quick, angry temper. We
have seen how he tried to get that polished off.
The speck on little Willie's jewel was a selfish
spirit. We have seen how he tried to polish that
off. In the same way you must find out what
the speck is on your jewel, and try hard to get it
Little Georgie was a boy only about five years
old. He was trying to love Jesus and be a good
boy. He was one of God's jewels; but there was
a speck in it. Georgie's fault was that he would
get sulky and be obstinate. One day he had been
doing something wrong, and his mother had to
punish him for it. This made him very sulky, and
it took him a long while to get over it. Every
night, when he had done saying his prayers after
his mother, she used to teach him to pray in his
own language; to speak freely to God and tell Him
all that he wanted. So on the evening of this day
Georgie remembered how wrong he had been, and
he thought he must pray about that. And he did
it in this way. He said: 0 God bless Georgie
and give him a new heart. Don't let him be
3MY JEWELS. 35
naughty again, never; no, never. Because, you
know, when he is naughty he sticks to it so. Help
him to give up easy, and make him a good boy, for
Jesus' sake. Amen."
That was the way in which little Georgie tried
to get the stain off his jewel; and that is the way
in which we must try. Let us find out what our
spots or stains are. And then let us pray to God
to help us while we try to polish them off. And
then, when God comes to make his jewels up, we
shall be gathered among them, and shine beauti-
fully in heaven for ever.
.. .... ""= "-- .---.---" "
ONE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE."
Matthew xiii. 46.
PEARL is a very beautiful jewel. It is
generally round in form. Sometimes it
has a tapering shape, something like a
pear. Its colour is a rich, soft, pure white, tinged
with some of the colours of the rainbow. You
know that the pearl is only found in a particular
kind of oyster. In old times, people used to have
very strange ideas about the way in which they
were formed. Some thought they were drops of
dew, made hard in some strange way, and so
turned into precious jewels. Others thought they
were the eggs laid by the female oyster. Others
thought that when the oysters were injured, drops
of liquid, like tears, would ooze out, on the inside
of their shell, and these would turn into pearls.
But we know now that they are formed just in
the same way as the inside shell of the oyster.
This is the reason why some beautiful shells are
called pearl-shells. The inner lining of these shells
is called "mother-of-pearl." This is used to make
knife-handles, and paper-cutters, and ladies' card-
cases and work-boxes, and many other useful and
ornamental things. If a grain of sand, or a small
bead, is put into the inside of a pearl-oyster shell
while the animal is yet alive, and left there for a
year or two, it will become a pearl; that is, it will
be covered all over with this beautiful pearly sub-
stance. This shows us clearly the way in which
pearls are made.
Many years ago there was a learned man in
Sweden who found this out about pearls. He told
it to the King of Sweden, and proposed that they
should establish a manufactory of pearls. The
king was greatly delighted with the idea. He
gave him a large present, to show how much he
was pleased. Then he sent to the East Indies,
where the best pearl-oysters come from, and got a
large quantity of them. With these they formed
a bed of pearl-oysters in one of the rivers near the
sea. They put little beads in the shells with the
living oysters, and thought in this way they could
make as many pearls as they wanted. But it
didn't succeed. They made a few indeed, but
found that it cost more to make them than they
were worth; and so they gave it up.
The pearl-oyster is found in many parts of
the world. But the principal place is near the
Island of Ceylon, in the Indian Ocean. The pearl
is one of the most beautiful of all the jewels.
Sometimes a single pearl will be found, of very
large size, which will be truly "a pearl of great
price." The largest pearl now known in the world,
and the most perfect in colour and form, is about
an inch in width at the broadest part, and about an
inch and a-half long. It is like a small pear, and
is said to be worth fifty thousand pounds.
We read in Roman history about Queen Cleo-
patra. She was a very beautiful woman, and very
rich; but very wicked, and very foolish. One
night she gave a great feast, in honour of the cele-
brated Roman general, Mark Antony. She had
two of the most valuable pearls then known in
the world. They were both alike, large, round,
beautiful, and perfect in shape and colour. Well,
the story is, that, in order to show how rich she
was, and how much she thought of that brave
soldier, she dissolved one of those valuable pearls
in vinegar, and gave it to Antony to drink. I
do not believe the story, but it has been told now
for nineteen hundred years; and, if it be true, then
that Roman soldier had the most costly drink that
anybody ever had. The mate of that beautiful
pearl of Cleopatra's afterwards fell into the hands
of Augustus, the Roman Emperor. He had it split
in two, and used it to ornament the ears of the
statue of the goddess Venus. What became of it
afterwards no one knows.
Now; it is because the pearl is so beautiful, and
so valuable, that Jesus is compared to this jewel.
He speaks of a merchantman seeking goodly pearls.
Presently he "found one pearl of great price, and
went and sold all that he had, and bought it."
Jesus is called a pearl because He is so beautiful-
so precious. He is called "the Pearl of greatprice,"
because there is no one else like Him. I wish to
give two reasons why it is proper to speak of Jesus
as the Pearl of great price."
The first reason is, because He was HARD TO GET.
I don't mean by this that it is a hard thing now
for you, or me, or anybody that wants this Pearl
to get it; for this is not hard at all. It is very
easy. But what I mean is, that it was hard for
Jesus to make it so easy for us to get this precious
For instance, suppose I had a small box here
full of pearls. And suppose I should say to you,
"Come to me, my dear boys and girls, and I will
give each of you one of these beautiful pearls."
It wouldn't be hard then for you to get a pearl,
would it ? No; you would only have to walk a
few steps from where you are sitting, to come up
to me, hold out your hand for the pearl, and it
would be yours. That would be very easy. But
suppose, after you had got your pearls, I should
say to you: "Now, my dear young friends, I want
you to take great care of these pearls, and prize
them highly, for they were very hard to get. Just
listen, and I will tell you what I had to do before
I could get them for you." For we will suppose
that I had been to the pearl fisheries and had
found these pearls for you myself. And the
things which I describe myself as doing, are just
the things which somebody has to do for all the
pearls you see shining on ladies' head-dresses.
Well, then, in the first place, I had a long
voyage to make. I had to sail many thousands
of miles across the seas, till I reached the Island
of Ceylon, in the Indian Ocean. I went to the
pearl-fisheries off the northern part of that island.
There I got into a boat along with the fishermen.
By and by we came to the fishing-ground. It is
away off to sea. The water was very deep. The
pearl-oysters were far down at the bottom of the
sea. The only way to get them is to dive down to
the bottom, fill a basket with the oysters, and get
pulled up again as quickly as possible. Well, I
had to put off nearly all my clothes; a basket was
hung from my neck, to put the oysters in; a big
stone was fastened to my feet, to make me sink
quickly; and, holding on with one hand to a rope,
fixed round my body, the men in the boat lowered
me down to the bottom. Oh, how many dangers
there were! At one time the current almost
dashed me against some sharp, jagged rocks. Then
a whirlpool came near drawing me in; and just as
I got my basket full of oysters, and made signal to
the men in the boat to pull me up, I saw a huge
hungry shark coming towards me as fast as he
could. How glad I was to escape his terrible jaws !
Well, I got safe up with my oysters.
The next thing was to open them, and find out
how many pearls were in them. And how was
this to be done ? Perhaps you think, Why, in the
same way in which we open our oysters-with a
knife! No; that is not the way. That would
spoil the pearls. I had to spread them out in a
trough, where the sun would shine on them; and
then wait till the shells opened, and the fish died,
and their bodies all decayed and turned putrid.
Then I had to wash off as much as I could of the
decaying matter, and go feeling round among what
was left for the pearls that were in it. The smell
was horrible. The work was the most disagreeable
that could possibly be. That is the way in which
I got my pearls. That is the way in which all
pearls are gotten. And so I might end as I began,
by saying I want you to prize these pearls highly,
because they were hard to get.
And Jesus may be called "the Pearl of great
price," for the same reason. He was hard to get.
I mean by this, that He had a great many hard
things to do before He could become "the Pearl of
great price" to us. The hard things that a pearl-
diver does, in getting pearls, are nothing compared
to what Jesus had to do, before He could be our
friend and Saviour. He had to take a long journey.
He came from heaven to earth. It took him thirty-
three years to make this journey. He had to strip
himself of the glorious garments that he used to
wear in heaven, and put on the garments of a poor
man. The pearl-diver has to plunge into the
depths of the sea, where he can only stay two or
three minutes at a time. When Jesus came into
our world, it was like plunging into a sea, not of
salt water, but of dreadful wickedness; where He
had to remain, not for a few moments, but for
many long years. And He met with dangers and
trials here, worse than the rocks and the whirlpools,
and the terrible sea-monsters which the pearl-diver
has so much reason to be afraid of. He had to
meet with the sharp tongues of wicked men, and
they are worse than sharp rocks. They ridiculed
Him. They called Him all sorts of bad names.
They put a crown of thorns on his brow. They
tore his back with cruel scourges. Not only
wicked men, but wicked spirits gathered all about
Him, to worry and persecute Him. These were
worse a hundred times than the sharks and sea-
monsters that threaten the pearl-diver. It was
this which made Him feel such dreadful pain and
sorrow, in the garden of Gethsemane, that He sunk
down to the ground, and that bloody sweat came
out all over his body. Oh, how hard that must
have been! And then they drove the big, rough
nails through his tender hands and feet. They
fastened Him to the cross, and let Him hang there
till He died, a lingering, torturing death! Oh, how
hard that must have been This was the price at
which this Pearl was gotten for us What a price
that was Nobody can ever calculate how much
that price was! Jesus may well be called "the
Pearl of great price," because He was hard to get.
This is the first reason.
The second reason why Jesus may be called
"the Pearl of great price" is, because there are
SO MANY USES THAT WE CAN MAKE OF HIM.
If we had the most beautiful and valuable
pearl in the world, there are only two things that
we could do with it-we might wear it as an
ornament, or we might sell it, and spend the
money. But if Jesus, the Pearl of great price,"
is ours, it is hardly possible to tell how many uses
we can make of Him. I have been preaching the
Gospel for almost thirty years. All this time I
have been trying to tell about the many uses that
poor sinners, such as we are, can make of Jesus.
And yet, so far from getting through with all
there is to say about Him, I feel as if I had
hardly begun. We can make use of Jesus for
everything that our souls need. We can use Him
for meat and drink to our souls; for clothing, for
ornament, for medicine, for help, for strength,
for wisdom, for riches, for pardon, for peace, for
light, for joy, for life, and, in one word, for every-
thing. Here, now, I have mentioned fourteen
different uses that we can make of Jesus. I might
increase this list to as many hundreds. And then,
if I should live long enough to preach a sermon
on each of those fourteen hundred different uses
to be made of Jesus, still the half of this subject
would not be told. And if this is so, then we
need not wonder that true Christians love so
much to sing that precious hymn, which says:
How sweet the name of Jesus sounds
In a believer's ears;
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds,
And drives away his fears.
It makes the wounded spirit whole,
It calms the troubled breast;
'Tis manna to the hungry soul,
And to the weary rest."
But let us look more closely at two or three
things for which Jesus is of use to his people.
One important thing is for their protection.
We live in a world where we are exposed all
the time to a great many dangers. We can't
protect ourselves from these dangers. But Jesus
BIBLE JE WELS.
can protect us; and this is one thing that makes
Him of so much use to those who love Him.
You know that, before the invention of gun-
powder, the things that men fought with were
swords and spears and arrows. Then, before going
into battle, the soldiers used to put armour on, of
steel or brass. This armour was to protect them
from being killed or wounded. But this life is
like a battle-field. We are in danger here all the
time. We need protection. Jesus can put a sort
of invisible armour round his people, to protect
Many years ago there was a celebrated preacher
in Scotland, whose name was John Knox. He
had a great many enemies on account of his
faithful preaching. Some of these tried in many
ways to kill him. When taking his meals in his
own house he always used to sit at the head of
the table, with his back to a particular window.
One night, when they were going to sit down to
supper, it came into his mind, all at once, not to
sit in that chair himself, and not to let any one
else sit in it. He couldn't tell why, but he in-
sisted on that chair being left empty. In the
midst of supper a gun was fired. The ball went
right through that empty chair, and buried itself
in the foot of a large candlestick on the table.
Then they all saw why it came into Knox's mind
to leave the chair empty that night. Jesus had
done it. That was the way in which He put his
invisible armour about his servant for his pro-
Let me show you how Jesus put this same
armour round a brave general during the American
Revolution, and protected him. This story is told
of General Schuyler. He had a great deal to do
along the Hudson and Mohawk rivers, where the
English generals had hired the Indians to fight on
their side. General Schuyler was a very brave
man, and he had always been a great friend to the
Indians, so that they both loved him and feared
him. But the English officers wanted to get him
out of the way; and as he never seemed to get
hurt in battle, they hired two men-one a white
man, the other an Indian-to waylay him and
murder him. The time was set; the two men hid
themselves in a clump of trees which the general
was accustomed to pass on his way home. They
waited and watched awhile. By and by they
saw the general coming along the road. He was
on horseback, and alone. Now or never was
their chance. The men looked to the priming
of their guns. They raised them to their shoulders.
They took aim. In another moment the general
would have been a dead man. But, instead of
firing, the Indian lowered his gun to the ground.
He pushed the white man's gun aside. "No,"
said he, "I can't see him killed. I've eaten his
bread too often." And so the general rode on to
his home in safety, little dreaming what a narrow
escape he had just had from death. Thus you
see how Jesus put his invisible armour around
him, and protected him. One of the things
for which Jesus is of use to his people, is for
Another thing for which Jesus is of use to his
people is for GUIDANCE.
It is a sad thing to be lost in a wilderness
where there are no roads, and not to know which
direction to take in order to get out. What such
a person needs above all things is a guide-some
one to show him the way to take in order to get
safe home. Now, we are in this world like tra-
vellers who have lost their way. We have lost
the way to heaven, our Father's house. And what
we need is guidance-some one to show us how
we can get there. If we had all the pearls in the
world, they could not help us in this matter. But
Jesus, "the Pearl of great price," can. This is one
of the ways in which He can be of use to his
people, and this use is of great price. Sometimes
Jesus guides his people by his example.
Howie Malcolm was a little boy about six years
old. He lived in the country. Once, in the middle
of winter, he went to spend the day with his cousin
Robby Darwin. Towards the close of the after-
noon, Iowie's father came to take him home.
The ground was covered with snow, and as they
were about starting, Howie said-
"The snow is so deep, and it's a long walk;
won't you please to carry me, papa ?"
No, my dear," said his father; "I have a par-
ticular reason for wishing you to walk. But I
will go before you, and then, if you will follow in
my footsteps, the snow will not seem so deep.
But don't turn aside to the right hand or to the
left. And don't try to make a path for yourself
over the hill, for that which I am showing you is
the only one to lead you home."
Then his father went before him, taking short
steps, so that the little fellow could easily follow
him. And while he kept treading in his father's
steps he got on very nicely. But by and by he
saw a holly-bush a little distance from the road.
He thought he would just like to pluck off a
branch to take home with him. Then he started
for the bush; but pretty soon he was sticking fast
in the deep snow, and was obliged to call his
father to come and take him out. He did so. He
set him in the right path again, and told him not
to turn aside, but to keep treading in his footsteps,
and then he would be safe. So they went on for
a while longer. Then he thought he could get
home by a shorter path than his father was taking.
So he started to make a short cut across the fields.
But pretty soon he was fast in the snow again,
and his father had to come once more and take
him out. After that he followed the guidance of
his father till they reached home. And when
they were sitting by the fire in the evening, his
father told him that the reason why he did not
carry him home was that he wanted to show him
how it was that Jesus guides his people to heaven.
"When I walked before you, Howie," said Mr
Malcolm, "you could see my steps in the snow,
and, by following them, you found that you were
brought safely home. And just in the same way
Jesus came into the world to be our guide. He
walked before us to show us the way to heaven.
As the Bible says, "He left us an example that
we should follow his steps." Our work here is to
be following the footsteps of Jesus. And when
we are trying to be like Jesus-to think, and feel,
and speak, and act as He would do-then we are
"treading in the blessed steps of his most holy
life;" and if we follow on in those steps we shall
be guided safely through this world to heaven.
But besides guiding his people to heaven by
his example, Jesus often guides them out of their
troubles here in very singular ways.
Some years ago, the late Duke of Wellington
had a British army in Spain, trying to drive the
French out of that country. A bloody battle was
fought at Talavera. In the 42d Regiment of
Scotch Highlanders, belonging to Wellington's
army, was a serjeant whose name was MacCallum.
He was wounded so dangerously that he was re-
ported among the killed, though he was not killed.
His wife, with her little boy, had followed the
army as nurse in the hospital; but she had been
very ill, and died about the time of the battle.
Now, what was to become of that little boy, left
alone among strangers, in an army marching
through a foreign country? What could you
expect but that he would be left to perish ? But
God put it into the heart of a kind officer, con-
nected with the army, to take charge of him.
When the army went back to England, supposing
that the little fellow's father was dead, he tried
to find out if he had any relations. But he couldn't
find any. Then he thought he would put him into
the Military Asylum at Chelsea.
When the little boy's father got well, he tried
to find his child. He inquired everywhere for
him, but could hear nothing of him. He was
afraid he should never see him again. But he
used to pray every day that God would take care
of him, if he were still alive, and would guide him
so that he might find him.
One day the person who had charge of the little
boy was going to the office of Lord Huntly, in
London, to-get an order for his admission into the
Asylum. Just before he reached the place, he saw
a Scotch soldier a little ahead of him. He has-
tened up to him and said-
My friend, do you belong to the 42d Regiment
of Highlanders ?"
"I do, sir."
"Were you present at the battle of Talavera ?"
"Do you know anything about a Serjeant Mac-
Callum, who was killed in that battle ?"
"I did not know any man of that name who
was killed there; but pray, sir, tell me why you
ask that question ?"
Because," said the officer, pointing to the child,
"that is his little boy, whom I brought from
"0 sir," said the man, "he's my child;" and,
rushing towards the boy, he clasped him in his
arms, and cried: 0 Jamie, Jamie! don't you
know me?" What a happy meeting that was!
And how mercifully God had guided that father
so that he should find his lost child. Guidance,
therefore, is one of the things for which Jesus is
of use to his people.
And, then, He is of use to them for COMFORT.
There are a great many sorrows and trials in this
world; and when they come we need comfort
under them. But if you are sick, or in pain, or if
in sorrow for the death of your father, or mother,
or some dear friend, it won't take away your pain,
or help you to bear it, or comfort you in any way,
to have a string of pearls tied round your neck.
A common pearl can't give you any comfort then.
But Jesus, "the Pearl of great price," can. He
says in the Bible: "As one whom his mother com-
forteth, so will I comfort you." What a sweet
promise that is! Nobody can comfort like a
mother. She is so gentle and kind; she knows
just what to do to make us feel better when we
are sick, or in trouble. I said nobody can com-
fort like a mother. But that was a mistake, for
Jesus can; yes, and better even than any mother.
Sometimes we have troubles under which even a
mother cannot comfort us. But we never can
have a trouble under which Jesus cannot give us
When the celebrated Whitfield was preaching
in England, a gentleman who heard him was
thrown into great distress of mind. He felt as if
his sins were so great that they could not be for-
given. He could not eat. He could not sleep.
He could not attend to his business. It seemed
as if he would die, unless he found comfort. One
evening the Countess of Huntingdon, an excellent
lady, who was in company with him, heard him
say to a friend: I am a lost man. My sins never
can be forgiven. I am a lost man."
I am glad to hear it; I am glad to hear it," said
It is very wicked in you to say you are glad
that I am a lost man," said he.
I repeat it," said she, I am heartily glad of it;
because it is written 'the Son of Man came to seek
and to save that which is lost.'"
The gentleman burst into tears, and exclaimed:
"Oh, how precious those words are! I will take
my lost soul to Jesus, and He will save it." So
Jesus comforted him.
Some Bible distributors, in going round their
district, once gave a Bible to a poor woman. A
long time after, in going round again, they met
her, and asked her what-she thought of the Bible.
"Think of it ?" she said, "why, I wouldn't part
with it for all this world can offer. Since I have
had this Bible I have passed through many great
trials, and in those trials my Bible has given me
more comfort than all the riches in the world
can give. I have found Jesus there. He has
pardoned my sins, and given me the hope of going
to heaven, and there's no comfort like that." So
Jesus comforted that poor woman.
Jesus may be called "the Pearl of great price"
for two reasons. The first is, because He was hard
to get. The second is, because there are so many
uses that we can make of Him. We have spoken
of three of these. He is of use for protection, for
guidance, for comfort.
Oh, how I wish, my dear young friends, that
you all had this "Pearl of great price !" Let me
tell you one more story in closing.
Some years ago, an English merchant was
engaged in business in the island of Java. He
got very rich there. He married a lady of that
country, and returned to England. This lady
could not get used to the customs of the English
ladies, and was not very happy there. She spent
most of her time in playing with her children,
whom she loved very much, and in decking her-
self out with her pearls and jewels, of which she
had a very large and costly collection. She would
often call for her jewel-box, and spend hours in
looking at them and holding them up to see them
sparkle in the light. These jewels were her
treasures. Her heart was set on them, and she
had little happiness beyond what she found in
One day her old Scotch nurse, who was a good
Christian woman, was in the room. The lady said
to her, "Nurse, I think England is a poor place."
Why so, ma'am?" asked the nurse.
Why, I look out into the streets, and don't see
any ladies with jewels on. Now, in my country
all the ladies are covered with diamonds and
pearls. We dig into our hills, and get gold and
silver and precious jewels. You dig into your
hills and get nothing like them."
The nurse said:
Oh, yes, ma'am, we have a Pearl in this country,
'a Pearl of great price.'"
Have you, indeed ?" said the lady. When my
husband comes home I'll get him to buy it for me.
I would part with all my other pearls to get that
"Oh!" said the nurse, "this Pearl is not to
wear. It is not to be had in the way you think
of. It is a precious Pearl indeed; and they who
have it cannot lose it. They are at peace, and
have all they wish for."
"Indeed !" said the lady, astonished. What
can this Pearl be ? I must get it, if possible."
This Pearl," said the nurse, in her simple way,
"is the Lord Jesus Christ, and the saying that
He came into the world to save sinners. All who
truly receive this saying, and have Jesus in their
hearts, as the hope of glory, have that which
makes them rich and happy, whatever else they
want; and so precious is Jesus to them that they
count all things but loss for the excellency of the
knowledge of Him."
It pleased God to bless the nurse's words. Her
BIBLE JE WELS.
mistress was led to seek a better treasure than
her box of jewels. She became a Christian. She
found the Pearl of great price." Soon after, the
lady died; and on her death-bed directed that all
her jewels should be sold, and the money which
they brought be used to send the knowledge of
' the Pearl of great price to those who had never
heard of Him.
My dear young friends, try to find this precious
Pearl. It is of great price. It will be worth
more to you than all the gold and silver, and all
the gems and jewels, in the world !iV
_~,- I _ _
"AND THE SECOND ROW SHALL BE ... A DIAMOND."
Exodus xxviii. 18.
HESE words refer to the breastplate of the
Jewish high priest. This was made of
fine linen, and beautifully ornamented
with threads of gold, and other threads of blue,
purple, and scarlet. It was made square, each side
being about a span long. In the front of it were
four rows of jewels. The first row was a sardius,
a topaz, and a carbuncle; and the second row was
an emerald, a sapphire, and a diamond. The
diamond is only mentioned in three places in the
Bible, and this is one of them. And I have taken
this passage for our text to-day only because it
contains the word diamond.
We have talked about the reasons why God
calls his people jewels. And then we have con-
sidered Jesus as "the Pearl of great price." Now
I wish to talk about the different kinds of jewels.
And I begin with the diamond, because it is one
of the most valuable of jewels, as well as the most
beautiful. Suppose, now, we have a beautiful
diamond here. We may consider this as repre-
senting a Christian. Every true Christian is a
spiritual diamond, one of God's jewels.
Let us look at this diamond and see what there
is about it on account of which a Christian may
be compared to it.
And the first thing about the diamond to notice
is its HARDNESS.
It is one of the hardest things in the world.
You may rub it all day against a pebble stone.
You may keep on rubbing till the pebble is all
ground to dust; but it won't leave any mark on
the diamond. You may get the hardest file that
can be made, and rub it on the diamond till the
file is worn as smooth as glass; but it won't hurt
the diamond the least in the world. It will bear
a great deal of rough handling, without being
scratched, or injured at all.
And Christians are just like diamonds on this
account. They can bear trial or hard treatment
without being injured by it. Job was one of
God's diamonds. Satan said, if God would only
let him take Job in hand, and bring heavy trials
upon him, which would be like rubbing a diamond
with a file, he could mark him, and injure him in
such a way as to show that he was not a true
diamond. He got a hard file, and rubbed him
very severely with it; but it didn't hurt him at all;
he killed his children, and destroyed his property;
he took away his friends, and his health, and left
him in poverty and misery; but he could not
make Job give up loving God, and trusting Him.
If you can only make a scratch on the surface of
what is thought to be a diamond, that shows it is
not a true diamond. A real diamond is so hard
that no file can ever make a mark or scratch upon
it. And Satan found that this was the case with
Job. He rubbed away on him with the file of
affliction till he got tired; but he could not make
any mark upon him to show that he was not a
real diamond. He had the hardness of a true
diamond. He had power to bear trial.
And Satan did the same thing with the early
Christians. He used persecution as a file. In
those days Christians were put in prison; their
property was taken from them; they were thrown
to the wild beasts; they were burned, and tor-
tured, and put to death in many ways; but even
these things could not make them give up loving
Jesus, and being Christians. Those terrible per-
secutions were a hard file to be rubbed with; but
the Christians of those days were real diamonds.
They had the hardness of the diamond-they had
power to bear trials without being injured by them.
And all God's spiritual diamonds have this hard-
ness. God gives to true Christians the power to
I remember, some years ago, making a visit to
a mining village. A day or two before I arrived
there, a dreadful explosion had taken place in one
of the coal mines. Several men had been killed,
and others had been burnt so badly that they were
not expected to live. I was sent for to go and see
one of those poor men. When I entered the room
where he was, what a sight I beheld! There sat
the poor man in a large arm-chair. He was
wrapped all round in blankets, and these were
wet through with linseed oil and lime-water. The
flame of the explosion had burnt off his clothes,
and scorched his body from head to foot. His
hands and his head were swollen to nearly twice
their natural size. The skin of his face and his
hands were burnt crisp, and looked just like the
skin of a roast pig. A person stood by him bath-
ing his face and his hands with a mixture of lin-
seed oil and lime-water, which was put on by a
feather. He was suffering dreadfully. It was
difficult for him to speak, because the skin of his
face was so hard and stiff. I stood awhile and
looked at the poor man with great pity. My
heart felt very sad and sorrowful for him. I
thought to myself: What shall I say to this poor
fellow to comfort him, if he is not a Christian ?"
I hardly knew what to do. At last I said-
My friend, there is nobody like Jesus to give
us help and comfort when we are suffering from
pain and sorrow. I hope you know Jesus ?" I
hardly expected any other answer than a groan, to
tell of his misery, and that he had no comfort.
But presently he managed, slowly, and indistinctly,
Oh, yes thank God, I do know Jesus. He is
my only comfort now."
You can hardly tell what a relief this was to
me. Then I sat down by his side and talked to
him about Jesus. He seemed to feel the truth of
all that I said. He had the hardness of a true
diamond. Jesus gave him power to bear his trials
patiently. Under all his terrible sufferings he
found peace and comfort in him. And not long
after, he died, in great bodily pain, but feeling
happy in the love of Jesus and in the thought of
going to be with Him for ever.
But there is another thing the diamond can do,
on account of its hardness, besides bearing rough
handling, without being hurt. It can MAKE MARKS
THAT CANNOT BE RUBBED OUT.
The diamond, you know, will cut glass. You
have often seen the glazier, when a pane of glass
was too large, draw his diamond across it, and cut
a piece off, almost as easily as you or I could cut
a piece of paper off with a pen-knife. Take a
diamond in your hand, and you can write your
name on a pane of glass. And when it is once
written there, no one can rub it out.
Now, when we become Christians we are like
diamonds in the hand of God. And when we do
anything to show our love to him, it is written
down in the book of God's remembrance. And
the good works of his people (written in that book)
are like names written with the point of a diamond
on glass; they never can be rubbed out.
The Bible tells us that a large part of the
heavenly city, the new Jerusalem, is composed of
gold, and that gold is clear as glass. It is trans-
parent; you can see through it. What a blessed
thing it is to think of having our names, and every-
thing we do for Jesus, written there, so that they
never can be rubbed out Every little movement
made with the point of a diamond on glass will
leave a mark there. And so everything we do for
Jesus, no matter how little, will be written on the
golden glass of heaven in such a way that it
can't be rubbed out.
We read in the New Testament about the woman
who came to our Saviour before his crucifixion,
and poured the ointment on his feet. The dis-
ciples found fault with her; but Jesus took her
part, and said that, wherever the Gospel was
preached, in all the world, the good deed she had
done should be known and mentioned to her
honour. She made a mark then that will never
be rubbed out.
One day the superintendent of a Sunday-school
was going along the street. He saw one of the
large boys belonging to his school coming out of a
gin palace. The boy's name was George Simpson.
As the superintendent passed by he raised his
finger, and, shaking it gently, he said, in a kind but
serious way, Take care, George, take care !" Some
ten or twelve years passed away. He had forgotten
all about it. But one day a very genteel-looking
man came up to him in the street, and, bowing
to him, said, "I think, sir, you are Mr P., who
used to be superintendent of such a Sunday-
"That is my name, sir, but I don't remember
"Don't you remember a boy named George
Simpson, who used to belong to your school ?"
"No, I can't recollect the name."
"Well, sir, don't you remember meeting him one
day, coming out of a gin palace, when you shook
your finger at him and said, 'Take care, George' ?"
Oh, yes, I remember that."
Well, sir," said the young man, I am George
Simpson, and I want to thank you for what you
did and said that day. It was a little thing, but it
saved me from ruin. I was just beginning to go in
the drunkard's ways. But something in your words
and manner made a great impression on me. I
gave up drinking. Not long after, I joined the
Church. Now I am living in the West, and am
quite well off; but, my dear sir, I owe it all to
Here you see how that superintendent was,
like a diamond, making a mark that never can be
Some years ago, a missionary in India, in going
through a village, left a copy of the New Testa-
ment in the shop of one of the natives, that any
persons coming in there might read it. A great
many read it. They talked about the new
religion, and wished to know more about it. At
last they sent a committee, of some of the most
intelligent men of the village, to the city of
Serampore, where the missionary lived, who left
the Testament, in order to learn more about the
religion of Jesus. The missionary went and
preached to the people of that village. A number
of them became Christians, and several of them
were appointed missionaries. They preached the
Gospel through that part of the country, and great
numbers were converted through God's blessing
on their labours. It was a little thing which the
missionary did when he left the Testament in that
village; but, in doing so, he made a mark that will
never be rubbed out.
The first thing about a diamond, on account of
which a Christian may be compared to it, is its
HARDNESS. It can bear rough using, or trials,
without being injured; and it can make mccrcs
that can't be rubbed out.
The second thing about a diamond, on account
of which a Christian may be compared to it, is
The diamond is the most brilliant of all the
jewels. It shines with more brightness than any
other. And the reason why it does this is, that
when the rays of light fall upon it, God has given
it the power to reflect them, as it is called, that
is, to throw them back or scatter them. The
diamond does not keep to itself the light that
God sends it, but gives it back that others may
see it, and enjoy it. In this respect the diamond
is like a liberal-hearted Christian. Jesus said to
his disciples: "Freely ye have received; freely
give." This is just what the diamond does. It
gives up freely the rays of light that God freely
bestows upon it. And this is what makes it look
so bright and beautiful. And so you see that
when Jesus said, Freely ye have received, freely
give," it is about the same as if He had said, "Be
like the diamond which gives back again so
freely the light which it receives."
Now, put a piece of coal side by side with the
diamond. How bright and beautiful the diamond
looks! And, in comparison with it, how dark,
how ugly the piece of coal is! The diamond,
shining so beautifully, and scattering its light
around for the benefit of others, is like a liberal,
generous-hearted Christian. And the piece of
coal, keeping all the rays of light it receives to
itself, is like a selfish miser, always trying to get
all he can, and to keep all he gets. Jesus said,
" It is more blessed to give than to receive." A
diamond and a piece of coal are the best illustra-
tion of this.
Now, let us take one or two examples of liberal
Christians, and see how they shine like diamonds,
and then look at one or two selfish misers, and see
how ugly they appear in comparison with them.
Lady Huntingdon was a noble Christian woman
who lived in England some years ago. She was
not very rich, considering that she belonged to the
nobility. Her income was about twelve hundred
pounds a-year. She lived in a very plain way,
spending as little money as possible on herself, and
giving away all the rest of it in doing good to
others. She founded a college to educate ministers
and supported it herself. She built a number of
chapels in different parts of the kingdom, and sup-
ported ministers to preach the Gospel. She was
like a diamond shining brightly, and scattering
abroad for the good of others the blessings that
God gave to her.
John Wesley, the celebrated Methodist minister,
was one of the most generous and liberal Christians
that ever lived. When he first began to preach,
his salary was thirty pounds a-year, in English
money. He found he could manage to live on
twenty-eight pounds; so he saved two pounds, not
to keep to himself like the coal, but to scatter
among others like the diamond. The next year
his salary was sixty pounds. He still lived on
twenty-eight, and gave away thirty-two. The third
year his salary was ninety pounds, and he gave
away sixty-two. The fourth year his salary was a
hundred and twenty pounds. But he still lived
on twenty-eight pounds, and gave away all the rest.
This was being like the diamond, indeed!
Some years ago there was an excellent minister
in France, named Oberlin. One day he was read-
ing in the Old Testament where God told the Jews
that He expected them to give a tithe, that is a
tenth, of all their property to Him. Oberlin said
to himself: "Well, I am sure, that I, as a Christian,
have three times as many blessings as the Jews
had. If it was right for a Jew to give one-tenth of
his property to God, surely I ought to give at least
three times as much." So he made up his mind to
do this. Out of every ten pounds that he received,
he laid aside three to give to God and the poor.
Out of every hundred pounds, he laid aside thirty.
He kept on doing this all his life, and God blessed
him for it, and he always had as much money as
These Christians were like the diamond. They
were liberal, and scattered, or gave away the bless-
ings God gave them. This makes them shine and
look beautiful as the diamond does. When we
think of them, there seems to be a brightness round
them like that of the diamond.
Now, let us look at one or two examples of sel-
fish, miserly people, who keep all the money they
get, just as the coal keeps all the light that shines
Some time ago there was a miser who lived in
England, named Dancer. His income was three
thousand pounds a-year. Besides this he had
immense sums of gold and silver stowed away in
different places where nobody would be likely to
find it. He never gave away a penny to anybody;
and he never liked to spend the least trifle for
himself, if he could help it. He used to wear an
old hat, which he had kept for nearly twenty
years. One day, a lady who knew him, met him
in the street, and persuaded him to buy another
hat. He wouldn't be so extravagant as to get a
new one, so he finally concluded to buy a second-
hand one from an old Jew. He gave him a shil-
ling for it. But the next time the lady saw the
old miser, she observed he was still wearing his
old hat; and, on inquiring about it, she found that
the hat he gave a shilling for he had persuaded his
servant to buy from him for one shilling and six-
pence. So he made sixpence by the sale, and went
on wearing his old hat. In cold weather he used to
lie in bed most of the time, so as to keep himself
warm and save the expense of a fire. He never
used snuff himself, but always carried a snuff-box
about him, and when anybody offered him snuff
he would take a pinch, but, instead of using it,
would open his box and put it in. When the box
was full he would sell it, or exchange it for farthing
candles. These were the only lights he had in his
house, and these were never used except when he
was going to bed. He seldom washed his hands
or face except when the sun was shining. Then
he would go to some pool or stream near where he
lived, and wash himself, using sand to save soap.
When he was washed he would lie on his back
and dry himself in the sun, because it wasn't worth
while to go to the expense of a towel. He never
would have his shoes cleaned, because rubbing
them with a brush helped to wear them out. After
his death, cups and jars and jugs were found
stowed away in different holes and corners about
his house, filled with gold and silver coin, and his
greatest happiness, while living, was to take these
out, count them over, and then put them carefully
There was a miser in Russia, some time ago, who
was so rich that he sometimes lent to the Emperor
a million of money at a time. He would barely
allow himself food enough to live upon. He used
to keep his money in casks which were buried in
the cellar. His chief dependence for the protection
of this treasure was upon a very fierce dog, who was
kept chained up all day, and then at night would
guard the house by barking loudly all the time.
But at length the dog died. The poor rich man
didn't want to go to the expense of buying another
dog. Besides, if he should buy one, he could not
depend upon him to keep awake all night. So he
thought he might as well be his own dog, and
actually used to keep awake all night, and go about
the house barking as loudly as he could in imita-
tion of his faithful dog.
A piece of coal does not reflect any light. All the
light that falls on it is swallowed up and kept to
itself. This is what makes it look so black, so dark
and disagreeable. Selfish, miserly people, such as
we have just been speaking of, are like coal in this
respect. They don't reflect, or scatter about them
anything they receive. Whatever God gives them
they swallow up and keep to themselves. And
the sparkling diamond and the dull, ugly-looking
piece of coal, are not more different from each
other than liberal, generous-hearted Christians, like
Lady Huntingdon and John Wesley, are different
from such selfish, miserly people as those just re-
ferred to. The brightness of the diamond, or its
power to reflect or scatter light, is the second thing
on account of which a Christian may be compared
But there is a third thing connected with
diamonds, on account of which Christians may be
compared to them, and that is, THE WAY TO FIND
There are many counterfeit diamonds. Men
can make imitation diamonds. And these often
look so very much like the real, that it is difficult
to tell one from the other. And then God some-
times makes stones that appear so much like
diamonds that hardly one person out of twenty can
tell the difference between them. Sometimes even
the merchants who are engaged in buying and sell-
ing diamonds can hardly tell a real jewel from an
Some years ago a negro, who lived in Brazil,
wrote to the Emperor telling him that he had found
an enormous diamond,-the largest that had ever
been seen; and he asked the privilege of being
allowed to come in person and present it to the
Emperor. One of the Emperor's carriages was sent
down for him, and an escort of soldiers. He rode
up to the palace in great state. When he arrived,
he threw himself at the feet of the Emperor, and
presented to him the diamond. He was astonished
when he saw it, and so were all the nobles in the
court. They examined it with great care. They
weighed it, and found it was about a pound in
weight. Then they began to calculate how much
it was worth. Judging by its weight, they found
it would be worth thirty seven millions. No
wonder they were glad, and made a great ado over
the coloured man who brought it. Then the large
diamond was put carefully away in a strong chest
in the Emperor's jewel-room. That room was
locked, and soldiers appointed to guard it night
About that time an English gentleman visited
the Emperor. He was known to be an excellent
judge of diamonds. The Emperor invited him into
his jewel-room to see his great treasure. The
strong chest was opened. The huge jewel was
brought out. He looked at it. He took a diamond
ring from his finger. He drew it across the surface
of the large jewel. It made a scratch. This showed
it was no diamond at all. The Emperor's pleasure
all melted away like a castle in the air. The poor
man who brought it had to trudge home on foot!
"It is not all gold that glitters." It is not every
bright stone that is a diamond. One of the ways
to tell a counterfeit is by trying to scratch it. A
real diamond can't be scratched. Another way is
by putting it beside a true diamond and comparing
them together. And so, if you wish to tell if a
person is a true Christian, you must compare him
with Jesus, and see if he is like Him. Jesus was
gentle, loving, and kind. And the Bible says that
"unless the same mind be in us that was in Christ
Jesus we are none of His." This means, that unless
we are like -Him we are not true Christians.
I remember hearing of two boys who were
brothers. The elder was named George, the
"Halloo, George," said one of his schoolmates to
him one day, "I hear your Charley has become a
Christian; is that so?"
"I don't know," said George, "but I mean to
find out." Now George was going to apply some
test to Charley's character, just as a jeweller would
do when he wanted to find out whether a particular
stone was a real diamond or a counterfeit.
One time he broke his kite, just before he was
going out to fly it. At another time, he trod on
his toe, when he was going past him. At another,
he threw a stone at Charley's pet dog, and sent
him yelping to his master.
Charley was naturally a very passionate boy.
George knew very well that formerly any one
of these things would have caused him to flare
up and get angry. George could see that
Charley felt these things very much, but he still
kept his anger down. His fist wasn't clenched;
his eye didn't flash; his tongue didn't scold
as it used to do. Charley bore these trials
patiently. And when George met his friend again,
"It's true; Charley is a Christian. I know it,
for I've tried him."
And then there is another way by which you
can tell a real diamond from a counterfeit. If you
put them in water, the diamond will still look
bright and shine; but the counterfeit, instead of
shining, will look dark and dull.
The Bible compares affliction or trial to water.
And you can easily tell a true Christian from a
counterfeit by seeing how he acts when affliction
comes upon him. If you go through an orchard,
in summer time, you will see some of the fruit
dropping off, whenever the tree is shaken by the
wind. And if you examine the fruit that falls off,
you will find it all spotted and unsound. The
sound good fruit is not easily shaken off. In spite
of all the shaking the tree gets from the wind, the
good sound fruit hangs on, and only drops off in
the autumn when it is ripe. Jesus himself said,
in speaking of those who are not his real, true
followers, that when trial or affliction comes upon
them for his sake, they are offended, and turn
back from following Him. Like counterfeit
diamonds, they will not shine in water.
But true Christians, like real diamonds, shine
brightly even in the water.
Let me tell you about a Christian who was put
very deep in the water of affliction, and yet con-
tinued to shine to the very last. I refer to a negro,
who was a slave in one of the West India islands.
He was afflicted with a terrible disease which the
physicians did not understand. It broke out in
great sores, which spread over his body. His
fingers fell off. It went into his head. He became
blind, and his eyes seemed to rot away, and pieces
of his skull came out. His feet were affected in
the same way and rotted off. His sufferings were
dreadful; and yet he was not only patient under
them, but often really happy and joyful in the
thought of soon being with Jesus in that bright
world where there could be no pain or suffering.
Here was the real diamond, shining brightly in the
water of affliction.
The last time I visited him," said his minister,
"I could not bear to look at him. I only stood at
the door of his chamber, and talked to him, and
prayed with him."
How do you feel to-day, Robert ?" I asked.
0 massa !" said he; "me two eyes gone; me
two hands gone; me two feet gone. No more but
dis ole carcass left. 0 massa! de pain some-
times too strong; but Jesus help me. 'Most over
80 BIBLE JEWELS.
now." And so he continued till he died. That
was a true diamond. The shining in the water
Now we have spoken of three things about
diamonds, on account of which Christians may
be compared to them. The first is their hardness.
The second is their brightness. The third is the
way to find out counterfeits.
My dear young friends, pray earnestly that
Jesus may give you new hearts, and make you
true Christians. If you don't become real Chris-
tians you will only be like common pebble-stones;
you will be good for nothing. But if you love
Jesus, and become his servants, you will be his
jewels, real diamonds. You will shine beautifully
here, and then shine in heaven forever when you
FOR WISDOM IS BETTER THAN RUBIES."
Proverbs viii. 11.
HIS jewel is called a sardius in two places
in the Bible. One of these places is in
Exodus, the other is in the Revelation.
In the former it is spoken of as being in the
breastplate of the Jewish high-priest. There it
occupies the first place in the first row of jewels.
And when St John is giving us his beautiful
description of the heavenly city, the New Jeru-
salem, in the last two chapters of the New Tes-
tament, he tells us that the foundations of this
city were of precious stones. Then he mentions
twelve different kinds of jewels as going to make
up those foundations. The ruby was the sixth
among those foundation-stones. The ruby stood
first on the breastplate of the high-priest, and sixth
among the jewelled foundations of the heavenly
The name of this jewel comes from the Latin
word Buber, which means red. And this name is
given to the ruby because of its colour. The ruby
is a jewel of a blood-red colour. The reason why
the ruby was called sardius was because it used
to be sometimes found near the city of Sardis, in
Asia Minor. It is sometimes called a carbuncle.
This means a little coal, and the ruby often shines
like a little coal when it is burning and all in a
glow. But this is enough about the name.
The next thing for us to inquire about is, What
the ruby represents? We may regard it as repre-
senting love or charity. And then the question
is, what is there about the ruby on account of
which love or charity may be compared to it?
We shall find our answer to this question when
we look at some of the things which people in old
times used to think the ruby could do. There
are three of these that we may speak of, on ac-
count of which the ruby may well be compared
And the first of those things which people used
to think the ruby was good for, was to CURE
In former times people used to think that a
ruby had the power of driving away sadness from
their hearts, or of curing their sorrows. But this
was not so. If you have ever so many of the
finest rubies that anybody can find, they would
not be able to give you any relief from pain, or
any comfort in sorrow. But if you have the
Bible ruby, the love of Jesus in your heart, there
is nothing in the world that can cure sorrow
or relieve pain like that.
"What do you want ?" asked a gentleman one
day of a poor man whom he was talking to, and
whom he knew to be a Christian. "I only want
three things," said he, "and I find them all in
Jesus. I want to be in Christ, I want to be like
Christ, I want to be with Christ." That man
would find his love to Jesus a real Bible ruby.
It would cure all his sorrows. If it did not take
them away from him, it would comfort him under
Some time ago a gentleman was conducting a
meeting for boys in London. After he had
spoken to them for some time, he said: "Now,
boys, before I stop, I want all of you who feel
really happy to hold up your hands." He looked
for a moment, but there was only one hand held
up. The owner of that hand was a stout lad
about seventeen. He was a poor boy, dressed in
coarse clothes, and all blackened with soot, for he
was a chimney-sweeper. He had to work hard,
and live on very plain food. Yet his hand went
up in a moment, and his bright, beaming eye
showed clearly that he understood what he was
doing when he lifted up his hand.
"And what is it that makes you happy?"
asked the gentleman.
He answered at once with his voice, as clearly
as he had done before with his hand,-
"Loving Jesus, sir."
He had this precious Bible ruby, and it cured
his sorrow, or made him happy.
Two girls were going to a neighboring town,
each carrying on her head a heavy basket of fruit
to sell. One of them was murmuring and fretting
all the way, and complaining of the weight of her
basket. The other went along smiling and sing-
ing, and seeming to be very happy. At last the
first got out of patience with her companion, and
said: "How can you go on so merry and joyful ?
Your basket is as heavy as mine, and I know you
are not one bit stronger than I am. I don't
"Oh!" said the other, "it's easy enough to
understand. I have a certain little plant which I
put on the top of my load, and it makes it so light
I hardly feel it."
"Indeed; that must be a very precious little
plant. I wish I could lighten my load with it.
Where does it grow? Tell me. What do you
call it ?"
It grows wherever you plant it, and give it a
chance to take root, and there's no knowing the
relief it gives. Its name is love, the love of Jesus.
I have found out that Jesus loved me so much
that He died to save my soul. This makes me
love Him. \I try to show my love by serving
Him. Whatever I do, whether it be carrying this
basket, or anything else, I think to myself, I am
doing this for Jesus, to show that I love Him;
and this makes everything easy and pleasant."
That girl had found out the great secret of being
happy. She had a ruby heart, a heart of love to
Jesus; and that cured her sorrows, and made her
The stories I have just told you show us how a
heart of love to Jesus will help to cure our own
sorrows. But if we have this ruby in our hearts,
it will help us to cure or relieve the sorrows of
other people too.
One morning a wealthy farmer was kneeling
down with his family at prayers. Among other
things, he seemed to pray with great earnestness
that God would clothe the naked, feed the hungry,
relieve the distressed, and comfort all who were in
A poor neighbour of his sat on the door-step
listening to that prayer. He was in distress and
sorrow, and had come to ask relief. He was an
honest, industrious, hard-working man, who was
trying to support his family by his own labour.
But for some time past he had been in trouble.
His wife was sick, and not being able to hire a
nurse, he was obliged to nurse her himself. This,
of course, prevented him from working, and earn-
ing any money. His family were in want of bread,
and he had come to his rich Christian neighbour,
to ask him for two bushels of wheat, promising to
pay him out of the first money that he earned.
As soon as the prayer was ended, he went in
and told what he wanted. But the wealthy farmer
shook his head. He said he was sorry; but he
had a large sum of money to raise, and he wanted
all the wheat he had to get it with. The poor man
left the house feeling very sad and sorrowful. The
tears were trickling down his cheeks as he walked
As soon as the door was shut, the farmer's little
boy said to him:
Father, didn't you just ask God to clothe the
naked, feed the hungry, relieve the distressed, and
comfort the sorrowful?"
"Yes, my son; but why do you ask that ques-
"Because, father, if I had all your wheat I
would help God to answer that prayer by giving
some to our poor neighbour."
In a moment the poor man was called back.
The wheat was given to him, and he went home,
That rich farmer had let the ruby fall out of his
heart; but his little boy put it in again, and then
he was able to cure or relieve the sorrow of his
poor, afflicted neighbour.
The first thing that people used to think that a
ruby could do was to CURE SORROW.
The second thing they used to think it could do
was TO SHINE IN THE DARK.
They used to tell a great many stories about
rubies and other jewels being employed instead of
lamps in dark caverns to give light, just as if they
had power in themselves to shine like so many
little suns. But this was a mistake. If you carry
a ruby, or a diamond, or any other natural jewel,
into a room that is entirely dark, it won't shine at
all. You may lay it down by the side of a piece
of coal, and you could not tell one from the other
by the look of them.
But it is different with the Bible ruby. Real
love to anybody, and especially the love of Jesus
--and this is what we compare the ruby to-will
shine in the dark. And when we speak of love
shining in the dark, we mean that it will give us
help and comfort in trouble. It will make us
able to do and suffer things that we never could
do without it. The Bible tells us that "many
waters cannot quench" love. Waters here mean
troubles or afflictions; and when we hear about
people bearing their troubles .bravely, either out
of love to Jesus, or love to anybody else, then we
see a Bible ruby shining in the dark.
A little boy, six years old, got his leg broken,
and was carried home on a litter. His poor mother,
who had long been sick, and was confined to bed,
was very much distressed when she knew of it.
She tried to get up, but fainted, and had to be put
to bed again.
The injury done to the little boy was very great,
and when the doctors came to set his broken limb
and dress his wounds, he suffered a great deal of
pain. But during the whole operation he never
uttered a single cry. All the persons present were
surprised at this, and one of them asked him if he
did not suffer much.
Oh, very much," said he, gently; but I was
so afraid of giving pain to mother that I tried to
keep from crying."
That little fellow had a ruby heart, and there
we see it shining in the dark.v
i' Tlh.i_ is a story told of a certain king of Lydia,
in old times, whose name was Croesus. He was
supposed to be the richest king in the world at
that day; and this has given rise to the common
saying, "as rich as Crcesus." But he had the
misfortune to have a son who was dumb, or un-
able to speak. His childhood and boyhood had
passed in the splendid court of his father. But
during all those years he had never spoken one
word. Then dreadful troubles came on his father
and the country over which he reigned. The
Persians were his enemies. They were very
powerful. They defeated the army of Croesus,
and took him prisoner, together with his un-
fortunate son. The Persian soldiers were plunder-
ing the city. One of them was just going to kill
the King, not knowing who he was. His poor son
saw what that soldier was about to do. The
thought of it was more than he could bear. He
loved his father with a very strong love. That
love did for him then what all the skill of the
physicians had never been able to do. In his
effort to save his father, it broke the string which
had tied his tongue, and he cried out, "Don't kill
him! That is the King!" That young prince.
had a ruby heart, and here we see his ruby shining
in the dark.
Not long ago, a gentleman was walking down
Market Street. As he passed along in front of
one of the warehouses, he saw a man taking
packages of goods from a box which had just
been opened. The son of this man was standing
by, with his arms spread out to hold the packages
which his father was taking out of the box. A
little fellow, the friend and playmate of the boy,
was standing near, looking on. Presently, he
thought the boy's load was getting too heavy, and
"Johnny, don't you think you've got as much
as you can carry ?"
"Never mind," said Johnny, in a pleasant,
cheerful voice, "father knows how much I can
How beautiful that was! Johnny had a ruby
heart towards his father. He loved him, and
trusted him; and when we think of him, he
seems like a ruby shining in the dark. That is
just the way we ought to feel towards our Father
in heaven. The Bible tells us that He considers
our trouble." He knows how much we can bear,
a great deal better than Johnny's father knew
this about him. If Johnny's load had happened
to get too heavy for him, his father was not able,
in a moment, to make him strong enough to bear
it. But our heavenly Father can do this, and He
has promised to do it. He says in one place in
the Bible: "As thy day, so shall thy strength be."
This means that whatever load He puts upon us,
He will always help us to carry it. Let each of
us think of Johnny's words-" Father knows how
much I can carry." Let us try to have a ruby
heart of love and confidence towards our Father
in heaven, and then, when trouble comes upon us,
we shall find that our ruby will shine in the dark.
The second thing that people used to think a ruby
could do was to shine in the dark.
The third thing that people used to think a
ruby was good for was to KEEP THEM FROM HARM.
People uped to carry a ruby about them as a
sort of charm. They thought it had some secret
power to ward off danger. It was just the same
kind of feeling that the heathen in Africa have,
when they carry gree-grees round their necks, or
put them up in their houses to protect themselves
from what they call the witches. More than a
thousand years ago, there was a great king called
Charlemagne. He was King of France and Emperor
of Germany. He was a great soldier, and gained
a great many victories. He used to wear one of
these jewels round his neck, and he never would
go into battle without it. He thought it kept
him from being hurt. And when he died he
ordered it to be buried with him. It is said that
jewel remained in Charlemagne's coffin till the
time of Napoleon Bonaparte, and that he took it
and wore it till towards the latter part of his life,
when he gave it away.
But no common ruby has any power to protect
people from harm. It is only the Bible ruby that
can do this. If we have a ruby heart towards
God-that is, if we love Him and trust Him-
it will be like a charm that we shall carry about
us, and which will keep us from harm. There is
one sweet passage in the Psalms which proves
this. Here God says of every true Christian:
"Bcecause he has set his love upon me, therefore
will I deliver him." Here you see how God pro-
mises that a ruby heart of love towards Him shall
really be like a charm to keep his people from
danger. David could understand the meaning of
that promise very well. When he was a young
man, for ten long years Saul, the King of Israel,
was trying to kill him. David was a poor man
then, and Saul used to chase him all over the
country. He used to go after him with a whole
army. Sometimes he tried to catch him when he
was shut up in a walled town. Sometimes he
would hear that he was in a particular cave, in
the side of a mountain, and he would get his
army to surround the whole mountain, and feel
sure that he should get him. But he never could
do it. God's promise was fulfilled to David:
"Because he hath set his love upon me there-
fore will I deliver him." David had a ruby heart,
and it was like a charm to him; it kept him from
The same was true of Martin Luther, who
brought about the Reformation, more than three
hundred years ago. The Pope of Rome wanted to
have him put to death. And Charles V., the
Emperor of Germany, the most powerful monarch
in the world at that time, wanted to have Luther
killed, too. Those two great men tried all they
could to kill Luther; but they never could do it.
Luther had set his love upon God; therefore He
delivered him. Luther had a ruby heart of love
towards God, and this was like a charm to keep
him from being hurt.
And God is taking care of his people who love
Him, at all times, and in many different ways.
I was reading lately about a missionary in India,
who had a ruby heart of love towards God, and of
the way in which this acted like a charm to keep
him from being hurt. He was preaching one day
to a crowd of people near a heathen temple. Not
far from where the missionary stood, one of the
priests of the temple had a large white elephant,
which the Hindoos look upon as a sacred animal,
and to which they are in the habit of making
offerings. The voice of the missionary, preaching
about Jesus, drew the attention of the crowd to-
wards him. The priest, with his elephant, was
left almost alone. He thought he should not get
much money that day, and this made him angry.
So he determined to let the elephant loose upon
the missionary, so that he would either be driven
away or trampled to death. The huge beast moved
towards him; but on his way he broke off a great
branch of a tree as though he needed a weapon,
and then he hastened on towards the missionary.
Some of his friends who stood near urged him to
go away. He said to them, "Remember Daniel
in the lion's den, and don't be afraid."
Then he went on preaching. The Hindoos, who
were standing round, watched the elephant, expect-
ing to see him strike the missionary to the earth.
They were greatly astonished when they saw the
animal walk up to where the missionary stood,
quietly lay down the branch at -his feet, and go
away without offering to do him the slightest injury.
He stepped on to the branch which the elephant
had brought him. This was like a platform for
him to stand on, so that, as he went on preaching,
he could be seen and heard better than before.
When the priest saw this, he was still more angry.
He directed the elephant to him again; but he
refused to go. The missionary then raised his
finger, and said to the priest, "You want your