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Illustration: Hold Up the Light

The famous Eddystone lighthouse off the coast of Cornwall, England, was first built in a fanciful way, by the learned and eccentric Winstanley. On its sides he put various boastful inscriptions. He was very proud of his structure, and from his lofty balcony used boldly to defy the storm, crying, "Blow, O winds! Rise, O ocean! Break forth, ye elements, and try my work!" But one fearful night the sea swallowed up the tower and its builder.

The lighthouse was built a second time of wood and stone by Rudyard. The form was good, but the wood gave hold for the elements and the builder and his structure perished in the flames. Next the great Smeaton was called. He raised a cone from the solid rock upon which it was built, and riveted it to the rock; as the oak is fastened to the earth by its roots. From the rock of the foundation he took the rock of the superstructure. He carved upon it no boastful inscription like those of Winstanley, but on its lower course he put, "Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it;" and its keystone, above the lantern, the simple tribute, "Laus Deo!" and the structure still stands, holding its beacon light to storm-tossed mariners.

Fellow-workers for the salvation of men, Christ, the Light, must be held up before men or they will perish. Let us, then, place Him on no superstructure of our own device. Let us rear no tower of wood, or wood and stone. But taking the word of God for our foundation, let us build our structure upon its massive, solid truth, and on every course put Smeaton’s humble inscription, and then we may be sure that the lighthouse will stand -- Selected.


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