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Miriam's Schooling and Other Papers   By: (1831-1913)

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E text prepared by Al Haines




Edited by His Friend, Reuben Shapcott.

London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Truebner, & Co., Ltd.



I dedicate this result of my editorial labours to you, because you were dear to our friend who is dead, and are almost the only person now alive, save myself, who knew him at the time these papers were written. A word of explanation is necessary with regard to the picture at the beginning of the book. You will remember that Rutherford had in his possession a seal, which originally belonged to some early ancestor. It was engraved with a device to illustrate a sentence from Lilly. The meaning given to the sentence was not exactly Livy's, but still it may very well be a little extended, and there is no doubt that the Roman would not have objected. This seal, as you know, was much valued by Rutherford, and was curiously connected with certain events in his life which happened when Miriam was at school. Nevertheless, it cannot anywhere be found. It has been described, however, to Mr. Walter Crane, and he has reproduced it with singular accuracy. It struck me, that although it has no direct relation with anything in the volume, it might be independently interesting, especially considering the part the motto played in Rutherford's history.

R. S.








The story which Jotham told his children on the day before his death concerning the achievements of his father Gideon His comments and those of Time thereon.

I am an old man, and I desire before I die to tell you more fully the achievements of your grandfather. Strange that this day much that I had forgotten comes back to me clearly.

During his youth the children of the East possessed the land for seven years because we had done evil. We were driven to lodge in the caves of the mountains, so terrible was the oppression. If we sowed corn, the harvest was not ours, for the enemy came over Jordan with the Midianites and the Amalekites and left nothing for us, taking away all our cattle and beasts of burden. We cried unto God, and He sent a prophet to us, who told us that our trouble came upon us because of our sins, but otherwise he did nothing to help us. One day your grandfather was threshing wheat, not near the threshing floor, for the Midianites watched the threshing floors to see if any corn was brought there, but close to the wine press. It was at Ophrah in Manasseh, the home of his father. While he threshed, thinking upon all his troubles and the troubles of his country, not knowing if he could hide enough corn to save himself and his household from hunger and death, the angel of the Lord descended and sat under the oak. He may have been there for some time before my father was aware of him, for my father was busy with his threshing, and his heart was sore. At last he turned and saw the angel bright and terrible, and before he could speak the angel said to him, "The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valour." My father, as I have said, was threshing by the wine press, on his guard even there lest he should be robbed or slain, and it seemed strange to him that the angel should say the Lord was with him. So strange did it seem, that even before he fell down to worship, he turned and asked the seraph why, if the Lord was with him, all this mischief had befallen them, and where were all the miracles which the Lord wrought to save His people from the land of Egypt. For there had been neither sign nor wonder for many years nothing to show that the Lord cared for us more than He did for the heathen. My father had thought much over all the deeds which the Lord had done for Israel; he had thought over the passage of the sea when Israel could not find any way open before them, and the very waves which were to overwhelm them rose like a wall and became their safeguard... Continue reading book >>

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