« PreviousContinue »
ding nearly four hundred practical questions, now annexed to the answers, it was thought advisable to stereotype the work, believing that the same reasons which have induced the Christian Public to patronize it where it has been known, will increase its circulation still more extensively, and thus indemnify the expense of stereotyping. It is believed that the older pupils in Sabbath schools, would be profited by a CLASSIFICATION of the portions of Scripture which they commit to memory, and that the practical questions now attached to the work will aid Sabbath school Teachers in enforcing and applying religious truths.
That HE with whom is the residue of the Spirit would cause it to subserve his glory, and the welfare of ZION'S HOPES, is the desire of the
RECOMMENDATIONS BY THE REV. CLERGY.
HAVING examined Mr. WILBUR's plan for a BIBLICAL CATECHISM, we think it judicious; the portion which is completed, we entirely approve, and have no doubt, the whole will make a useful publication, highly deserving the attention of private families, of schools, and such societies of young persons as may be formed for the important purposes of religious instruction and improvement.
SAMUEL SPRING, D. D. Newburyport.
HAVING attended to Mr. WILBUR'S BIBLICAL CATECHISM, we think the questions most important; and the texts in the answers judiciously selected. The work in our view is well calculated to produce serious impressions on the minds of children and youth: and to give them rational and scriptural
views of the doctrines and duties of our holy Religion. We, therefore, freely recommend it to Parents, to the Teachers of Schools, and Ministers of the gospel as a useful Tract to aid them in the religious culture of children and youth under their
ELIJAH PARISH, D. D. Byefield.
Newburyport, Sept. 26, 1812.
DEAR SIR-I have examined as far as practicable your Biblical Catechism. The design I think highly interesting; and the execution generally judicious. Whatever tends to attract the attention of children and youth to the sacred volume, must be beneficial. Nor can any form of religious instruction be either so useful, or so unexceptionable, as that which leads the pupil to draw all his sentiments from a perfect and infallible source.
Wishing that your intended publication may meet the patronage of the public, and be crowned with the divine blessing. I am sincerely yours, DANIEL DANA.
West-Springfield, Nov. 19, 1812.
I thank you for your Biblical Catechism. On a perusal of it, I think it a valuable and useful Tract, well adapted to the instruction and edification of such youths as are capable of understanding the questions and applying the references. The questions are important, and plainly stated, and the references pertinent. Your method of instruction, while it leads to an acquaintance with the doctrines of religion, tends to improvement in scriptural knowledge. I am, sir, your obliged Humble servant,
Philadelphia, March 31, 1813.
Having examined Mr. WILBUR's Biblical Catechism, I think the plan interesting, and well adapted to promote an acquaint
ance with the Scriptures. The questions are well selected and arranged to impress on the minds of youth the leading doctrines of the Bible, Parents will find it useful in the education of their children. Societies formed on this plan must be highly beneficial to youth, and promise much good to the church. I freely recommend it to the patronage of the pious.
Princeton, June 1, 1813.
I cheerfully add my testimony to that of others, in favour of Mr. WILBUR'S "Biblical Catechism" as an excellent manual in the religious instruction of children and youth.
Extract from a review in the Panoplist for April, 1813.
Mr. Wilbur has executed his plan in such a manner, as to deserve the approbation of the Christian public.-The questions are important, the texts referred to generally apposite and suited to impress the true answer on the mind, and the effect of teaching this catechism to the young, or rather inducing the young to teach themselves by the use of it, can hardly be otherwise than good. We have examined all the references which are intended to be committed to memory. They form a precious treasury of jewels taken from the inexhaustible mine of Scripture. To have them deposited in the memories of young persons, must be a most desirable reward for the labour of collecting and arranging them.
The principal design of the author in composing this Catechism, was to benefit young persons, associated for the purpose of studying the Scriptures together in Catechetical Societies, a constitution for which is prefixed to the work. Twenty such societies have been formed we are told, and have experienced essential advantage by consulting this little manual. A large portion of the members have produced answers to questions, selected for the purpose, in the form of written compositions. The manifest tendency of such a course is to make the learner familiar with the Holy Scriptures; and while his memory is strengthened, and his mind expanded, by studying the momentous truths there revealed, his conscience may be awakened, and, by a Divine blessing, his heart renewed,
Salem, August 15, 1816.
Nothing can be of higher importance, than that the minds of young persons be early and deeply imbued with the Holy Scriptures. For this interesting purpose, I know of no general plan which promises more, than the one set forth in your "Biblical Catechism," and illustrated and enforced in your "Discourse on the Religious Education of Youth." Portions of the Scriptures, judiciously selected and arranged under general and particular heads, comprising the leading doctrines and precepts, warnings and encouragements of religion, must enrich the young mind vastly more when committed to memory, than equal quantities of scripture, taken either promiscuously, or in course. The catechetical form has also very evident advantages; and associations for catechetical exercises must eminently serve to engage attention, to excite interest, to quicken the faculties, and to promote improvement. May the Lord prosper your endeavours, for the everlasting benefit of the generation now rising, and of generations to come.
Very affectionately yours,
WHILE the united, laudable, and increasing exertions to circulate the BIBLE among the destitute, rejoice the hearts of Zion's friends, they, doubtless, will not despise a humble attempt to promote among those who possess this invaluable treasure, a more intimate acquaintance with "the holy Scriptures, which are able to make" us, "wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." The subsequent Catechism was designed particularly for the use of the young, formed in associations for the laudable purpose of replenishing their minds with a knowledge of the doctrines, duties, warnings, promises, and consolations of our holy religion. Regular Society meetings of young people, for religious mental improvement, might be rendered deeply interesting and highly useful. They would be cheap, safe, honourable, and profitable substitutes for parties entirely devoted to vanity.*
Such as are disposed to write answers to questions, which constitute the lessons of the Class, may consult the references connected with the questions, and "search the Scriptures" for other appropriate passages. Thus they would improve THEMSELVES in composition and religious knowledge by digesting, and committing their ideas to paper, and improve OTHERS by
*Dear IMMORTALS: "Doth not WISDOM cry?" Jonah 2, 3. Prov. 8, 10, 11, 32-36, and 3. 1-18,
communicating them. Society members who choose not to write may commit to memory the references which precede the parallel, and thus answer the questions by storing their minds with scriptural truths in the language of inspiration. The first sets of references are selected to form in scripture language, connected appropriate answers to the questions, and may be committed to memory as such. Children in families and schools may successfully and profitably adopt this method of using the Biblical Catechism. The proposed exercises, tend to strengthen the memories, enlarge and invigorate the understandings, correct and improve the taste, and to affect the HEARTS of the YOUNG. Persons of more mature age whose leisure and inclination permit, may be highly useful to the young by writing judicious answers to such questions as they please to select, and admitting their answers to be read before a Bible Class, or before their domestic circles. By Preceptors it has been suggested that beginners in composition at academies might derive particular assistance from this Work. The question would serve to fix their attention to one point. The references would furnish them with ideas which they might easily clothe in their own language, while their attention to scripture truths would enrich their minds with important knowledge. It has likewise been suggested by learned Fathers in the ministry, that this Work, with a Divine blessing, would have a tendency to arouse the attention of all classes to the written and dispensed word of GOD, and might be profitably used in religious Conferences, or as a Common-place text book. Finally if it prove but ONE MITE in the TREASURY OF USEFUL KNOWLEDGE, if it be made instrumental of assisting any in drawing "the water of life from the wells of salvation," it will furnish occasion for lively gratitude both in the Reader and in the AUTHOR.
TO A BIBLE CLASS.
YE DEAR YOUTH,
I CONGRATULATE you on exchanging the vain empty pursuits which so commonly engross the attention of the young, for the cultivation of your minds in moral and religious knowledge ;— knowledge calculated to render you amiable, honourable, useful, and happy through life :-knowledge which will endure when human science shall be no more.
Ye dear members of this BIBLICAL ASSOCIATION, Thus far you have done well. PERSEVERE IN WELL DOING. "Dearly beloved," "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all