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The Precious Things of the Hills.

The Precious Things of the Hills.

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY REV. DANIEL MARCH, D.D.,


Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of the lasting hills.-' DEUT. xxxiii. 13, 15.
BY REV. DANIEL MARCH, D.D.,


Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of the lasting hills.-' DEUT. xxxiii. 13, 15.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Oct 14, 2013
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THE PRECIOUS THIGS OF THE HILLS.BY REV. DAIEL MARCH, D.D.,Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of the lastinghills.-' DEUT. xxxiii. 13, 15.Moses named the chief hills of the aneient, mountain andof the lasting hill . In the lant Holernnand prophetie words which he addressed to the tribesof I:-.raeJ, he dwelt with peculiar earnestness of feelingand beauty of expre-.-.ion upon the preeioux thing- of the hi .ting hills. lie had many times before raisedx-.etationn of the weary and foot-worn wanderersdesert by deneribing their promi-ed inherifaneeas a land of hills and valleys, a land that drinkcthwater of the rain of heaven, a land on which theof the Lord God rests for good through all theTo a people who had lived upon the dead level of pt, and had wandered forty years up and downthe de-erf-, of Arabia, the sunny hills and green pas-ture of Palestine must have seemed in the distantlike an earthly Paradwe. All great andnoble npirit:-; among men have felt a peculiar joy in thebill:-:. And thone who have spent their early yearsv ir338 THE PRECIOUS THIGS OF THE HILLS.upon the monotonous plain have turned with a stillmore passionate and sacred longing to the high placesof the earth. The most lofty and inspiring descrip-tions of ature among mountains have come from men
 
who in early life longed for the hills as we long for theland that eye hath not seen. The aged leader of thetri bes must have had this longing with such an intenseand sacred passion as to mingle the hills of Palestineand those of the better country in his excited imagina-tion. And to gratify that feeling, permission was givenhim, as a last earthly favor, to go up to the top of Pisgah and survey the beautiful land which awaitedits new possessors beyond the Jordan. It is certainly anotable circumstance that to this most honored servantof God in ancient times, permission to climb a highmountain and gaze upon a wide and beautiful landscapewas given as a sacramental preparation for death. Letmountain-climbers remember the last scene in the lifeof Moses, and they will look forth upon the landscapewith feelings of reverence and solemn worship whenthey stand on the high places of the earth.The forty-years' march of the wilderness was ended ;the camps of the gathered host were pitched for the lasttime under their great leader's eye. For a whole gen-eration the burden of a great people had been laid uponhim; he had carried them in his bosom as a tenderfather carries an infant child. At times he had beenso afflicted and discouraged by their murmurings andsorrows as to beg of God as a favor that he might dieTHE PRECIOUS THIGS OF THE HILLS. 339at once and not live to see his own wretchedness. Butnow the pathways of the desert were all passed ovei.The terrible chastisements of plague and poisonousserpents and avenging fire were ended. The exultanttribes were just about to set forth upon their triumphalmarch into the land of promise. In full view beforethem were wooded hills and grassy plains, seeming themore beautiful and inviting to them because they hadwandered a whole lifetime in the howling waste of 
 
Arabian deserts. Just now the one man who has suf-fered everything for their sake, and has even prayedthat his own name might be blotted from God's book of life if they cannot be saved even he is commandedto turn away his face from his beloved people, and goup into a solitary mountain and die there alone.Though the meekest of all men on the earth, Moseshad given way to provocation and had trespassedagainst the Lord at the waters of Meribah, and there-fore he must not be permitted to go in unto the landwhich the Lord had given to Israel. This instance of seeming severity in God's dealings with his most hon-ored servant must stand in everlasting memorial uponthe sacred page, that others may not give way to temp-tation and shut themselves out from the Better Land.Turning slowly and sadly from the sacred tabernack over which the pillar of cloud hovered, and in whichhe had so many times conversed with Jehovah face toface as a man talks with his friend turning from thegoodly tents of Jacob, which were spread forth upon340 THE PRECIOUS THIGS OF THE HILLS.the plain, like gardens by the river-side he sets his facetoward the mountains and begins to climb the steepascent of ebo to find the place of his death. Anold man, a hundred and twenty years of age, leavesbehind him the people whom he has loved with a lovestronger than death, and he goes away into the solitudeof the uninhabited heights to die alone. o friendlyhand shall smooth the pillow for him to lie down tohis last sleep. o human face shall bend over himwith its look of sympathy. o human voice shallwhisper words of peace and comfort to cheer him inhis departure. The chiefs and elders of the tribesshall not be permitted to come and tell him how dearhe had ever been to their hearts, notwithstanding all

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