Billeder på siden
[ocr errors]

Reasons against this vice. I should not be impatient under sickness, because it is the hand of God that brings it upon me, and impatience rising against God is very sinful. Besides, fretfulness will often increase the distemper, and will bigo der my recovery of health.

72. Q. What is the second instance of impatience ? A. 2. There is an impatience of opposition ; as, when I fall into a passion against one that opposes my opinion, or crosses my will.

Reasons against this vice. I should not be impatient of opposition, because the opinion of another may be wiser than mine, or the will of another may be better than mine ; and they have as much right to be angry with me who differ from them, as I bave to be angry with them who differ from me.

73. Q. What is the third instance of impatience ? A. 3. There is an impatience of disappointment, as, when I vex myself if things do not happea just according to my expectations and wishes.

Reasons agaiost this vice. I should not be impatient under disappointments, but I should learo to be easy under them, because I must expect to meet with maay of them if I live in the world, aod therefore I would learn early to bear them.

74. Q. What is the fourth instance of impatience ? A. 4. There is an impatience of delay ; as, when I fret with eagerness to possess what I desire, and am violently angry with them that defer or delay it. i Reasons against this vice. I should not be impatient of delay, because this shews that I am too eagerly set upon what I desire: And besides, it will maoy times make me angry with inferiors without a Cause, when I imagine they do not make what haste they can to serve me; or angry with my superiors, who know what is fit for me better than I do, and when to give it me.

75. Q. What is selfishness, which is the fourth vice incident to some children ? A. It is when I am so entirely wrapped up in pleasing and serving myself, that I take no care or concern to serve or please my neighbour. is. Reason against this vice. If this temper abide and grow up with me, I shall be in danger of being churlish and hard-hearted now, and grow morose apd covetous when I am older.

Now I would not be hard-hearted or churlish, for theo I never have the pleasure of making others share in the good things which I possess; and nobody will love me.

Nor would I be morose, for that is a rude and rough way of speaking and behaviour, without regard to the pleasing or displeasing of tbose with whom we have to do.: And if I take no care to please others, or be civil to them, I cannot *expect that others should be civil to me, or take aoy care to please me or

Nor would I be covetous, for that is a sin often coodemned in scripture, and is a very unlovely character among men; nor do such persons themselves ever enjoy the good things which they possess, por do good with them, for they are afraid to spend them.

76. Q. What is meant by uncleanliness, which is the fifth vice which some children are subject to ? A. When I am not careful to keep my hands, or my face, or my clothes clean enough to appear among my betters.

** Reason agaiost it. A degree of cleanlioess is necessary to my own health, as well as to keep my clothes from spoiling, and to render my company agreeable and inoffensive to others.

Note, In this matter children of different tempers are ready to run into extremes : some growing up so foolishly nice in their meats, drinks, apparel, and every thing that belongs to them, as to become bumoursome therein, and create much trouble to themselves and to those about them; but generally the other ex. treme prevails, and if children were utterly urlaught, perhaps they would be all uncleaply; and some would run into such a degree of oastiness as give just offence to all who are near them. There is a medium which we call decency, if we could always bit upon it for our owo practice, and for an example to children.

Note further, That though the children of the rich have far the greatest ed. vantages to practice this decency, yet the poor should learo to be clean even in

serve me,


their coarse or thread-bare garments. There may be a neatness in poverty, wbich is always agreeable and gains respect,

77. R. What is heedlessness, or the sixth vice of children? A. When I take little or no care or thought about any thing that I am to do, or when I give but little attention to any thing that is said to me.

Note, This does not always proceed from obstinacy of temper, but often from a mere lightness and wandering of thought and absence of the mind from its present business. Sometimes it may arise from a great degree of patural vivacity, and an excess of spirits ; but still it ought to be corrected.

Reason agaigst this fault. Because heedlessness would make me stumble at every stose, and carry me into many a mistake and daoger; besides, if I am beedless, I shall neither grow wise nor good; for I shall beither give diligent at. tention to instructions at home, nor to sermons at church.

78. Q. What is rashness, or the seventh vice or folly of children and youth ? A. I may well be called rash, if I speak without thinking beforehand, and venture upon bold actions without considering the danger.

Note, This rash temper carries children sometimes to climb high trees, to walk on the narrow tops of walls, to venture on the edge of precipices, to try to leap over brooks or currents of water, and thereby they expose themselves to many hazards of their life or limbs.

It is the same temper tbat ioclioes them to speak very improper tbiogs on a sudden, without due regard to the occasion or the company; it leads them to make rasle vows, and promises, and engagements, and thus they bring ibenselves into many difficulties.

Reason against this folly. Because God has given me the power of reason 'and of thinking, on purpose to direct my words and my actions; and therefore I ought neither to speak nor act without thought and consideration.

79. Q. What is fickleness, or the eighth folly of children? A. Then I may be called fickle, when I am soon weary of what I was very fond of before ; when I am perpetually changing my desires and purposes, so that I can stick to nothing long, but always want something new.

Reason against this frailty. Because if I am always seeking out oew things, Dew books, new lessons, and new employments, I shall never dwell long enough upon any thing to become master of it, or to profit by it, according to the proverb, “a rolliog stone gathers no mosk.” Besides, if I indulge a fickle temper, I shall be often templed to break my appointments, and my friends will not know how to trust a creature that is ever given to change.

80. Q. What is the ninth vice to which children and youth are subject, which is called lavishness or profuseness ? A. I am then profuse, if I squander away much money upon trifles; if I lavish away upon myself more than my friends allow, or give away to others more than is proper on every slight occasion, without considering how far my stock will hold out, nor how much pains it cost my parents to get it, nor ever thinking to how much better purpose

this money might be applied.

Reason against profuseness. It is a waste of the good things with which the providence of God and the kiodness of my friends have furnished me, to make my life comfortable and honourable; besides, this profuse and lavish conduct haib put many young creatures upon gaming, to their utter ruio ; and those who indulge a wasteful and prodigal humour in their younger days, may bitterly repent tbeir folly io a long poverty, and in the want of all things.

Note, Profuste dess is generally the fault of youth, as covetouspess is frequently the vice of age.

81. Q. Is there any other vice or folly which children are guilty of? A. A talkative or tattling humour, when children tell all that they see, or hear, or know, in any place or company, without guard or fear.

Reason against this folly. Such great talkers are in danger of becoming busy-bodies and tale-bearers : they will talk over in public the private cop. ceros of their own family, and the families of others, as far as they know them : they will tell one person whatsoever another happens to speak of bim, aod do a deal of mischief in the world. Great talkers are oftea ad. monished in scripture ; but tale-bearing is a sin which the word of God plainly forbide

Scripture. “ Prov. xiv. 23. The talks of the lips tendeth only to poverty, Ec. v. 3. A fool's voice is known by a multitude of words. Ec, x. 12, 13, 14. The lips of a fool will swallow up himself. The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness, and the end of his lalk is mischievous madness. A fool also is full of words. Prov. xx. 3. Every fool will be meddling. I Tim. v. 13. They learn to be idle, wandering about from house to bouse; and not only idle, but tattlers and busy-bodies, speaking things which they ought not. Lev. xix. 16. Thou shalt not go up and down as a tale-bearer among thy people. Prov. xi. 13. A tale-bearer revealeth secrets. Prov. xxvi. 20. Where there is no tale. bearer the strife ceaseth. Prov. xvi. 21. A whisperer, or tale-bearer, separateth ehief friends."


[ocr errors]

We have the unspeakable blessing of the word of God among us: We are furnished with a divine bistory of the transactions of God with men from the beginning of the world. It would be a shame therefore if christian families in our land should know nothing of these important affairs. Even from their earliest infancy, children should be trained up in the knowledge of some of the greater and more remarkable names and actions which are recorded in this divine book. Our holy religion, and the gospel of Christ, depend upon some of these ancient facts, nor can the doctrines and duties of christianity be well learned without some knowledge of sacred history; it is indeed a real and substantial part of our religion : An early acquaintance with these things, will not only lead children to understand many parts of the gospel the better, but it will allure them to read their bible : for it will give them a deliglitful taste of it beforehand, so that this sort of catechism seems very necessary toward a christian education.

Now to render this work more easy, there are two catechisms of this kind composed. The first is called a catechism of scripture-names, for it gives only the name with some single character or action of the person. The second enlarges both on persons and things, and it is called the historical catechism.

As for the short catechism of names, the child may begin to learn it as soon as he can speak plain, at the same time that he begins the first of the foregoing catechisms of the principles of religion, which is provided for young children.

You see the name is always contained in the question ; but in order to teach children to pronounce the names as well as to learn the character of the person, parents or teachers may ask the same question backward and forward, viz. Q. Who was Adam ? A. The first man that God made ; And then, Q. Who was the first man that God made ? A. Adam. By learning this perfect, children will have learned several things in the historical catechism, before they are required to learn it as their proper business.

And to render these things yet more familiar to children, I would propose. that the historical catechism, and also the larger catalogue of names which are drawn out of scripture, be appointed as lessons to be read at school and at home, by children while they are learning their younger and shorter catechisms. There will be found hard names enough in them to exercise and improve their reading and spelling : And the perpetual variety of new things occurring may allure them to take deliyht in perusing it. Children of good memories will learn a great part of it by heart in this manner ; The scripture histories will stick upon their minds because they strike the young imagination with pleasure and give an agreeable entertainment.




The Scripture Names in the Old Testament.

I. QUESTION. WHO was Adam? A. The first man that God made, and the father of us all.

2. Q. Who was Eve? The first woman, and she was the mother of us

all. 3. Q. Who was Cain? A. Adam's eldest son, and he killed his brother Abel.

4. Q. What was Abel ? A. A better man than Cain, and therefore Cain, bated him.

5. Q. Who was Enoch ? A. The man who pleased God*, and he was taken up to heaven without dying.

6. Q. Who was Noah? A. The good man who was saved when the world was drowned:

7. Q. Who was Job ? A. The most patient man under pains and losses.

8. Q. Who was Abraham A. The pattern of believerst; and the friend of God.

9. Q. Who was Isaac? A. Abraham's son according to God's promise.

10. Q. Who was Sarah ? A. Abraham's wife, and she Was Isaac's mother.

11. Who was Jacob? A. Isaac's youngest son, and he craftily obtained his father's blessing.

12. Q. What was Israel? A. A new name that God himself gave to Jacob.

13. Q. What was Joseph ? A. Israel's beloved son, but his brethren hated him and sold him.

14. Q. Who were the twelve patriarchs ? A. The twelve sons of Jacob, and the fathers of the people of Israel.

15. Q. Who was Pharaoh ? A. The king of Egypt, who drowned the children, and he was drowned in the Red Sea.

* The usual character of Enoch is, that he walked with God; but this phrase is above the understanding of children : Nor is it giveo only to Enoch in scripture, for Noah also walked with God: Gen vi. 9. I bave rather therefore expressed it, ibat Enoch pleased God; as in Heb. xi, 5.

+ It is also ibe usual character of Abraham, that he was the father of the faithful; Rom. iv. 11. but it chiefy means the pattera of believers, which is mucb easier for children to understand.


Vol. v.

« ForrigeFortsæt »