SEBM.XIX.] THE GIFTS OF THE SPlBIT. 24'5The sul^t is an important one^ and I shall proceedwithout further preface t6 set before you certainprinciples which St. Paul lays down, and certainreflections which naturally arise from them.I. First, — every goodlhing which a man has is a gift.othing good which a man has is his own. '* Everygood gift and every perfect gift is from above^ andoometh down from the Father of Lights;" tha^tis, every good is a gift, and a gift from God above.We owe it not to ourselves, but to God. It has notits origin in us, but in Him. We are not creators.God made us, and God is the author of everythinggood within us, or without us. Goods of the mind,goods of the body, goods in our character, or goodsin our circumstances; anything and everything towhich the term ^ good ' can righdy be applied, comesto us, comes from above, comes down upon us, comesfrom God. This is true of all men, even of those whoare living only by the light of nature, and who aregifted only with natural advantages ; but it is especiallytrue of those who are not only men but Christians,members of Christ; and it is true, above all, of spiritual gifte.Christians have all those other gifts which are givenin various measures and degrees even to heathenpersons, but they have also that greatest gift of theHoly Spirit, which not only brings with it certainspiritual gifts as its immediate consequence, butchanges all natural talents and advantages into ahigher character and turns them to nobler uses. If,therefore, these natural talents were gifts at any rate,they are gifts more truly tlian ever by reason of thattranscendant gift of the Holy Ghost, Who takes themfor His own purposes and uses them for His own ends.