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4. We should consider the DESIGN OF THE SEVERAL BOOKS which compose the Bible.-Genesis contains a very brief account of the creation, and of the church for nearly twenty-five hundred years. The other four books of Moses describe the wanderings of the church in the wilderness, and the constitution and laws which were given for her government during fifteen hundred years. The book of Joshua describes the wars of the church, undertaken by Divine command. The next book describes the vicissitudes of the church under the judges. The book of Ruth is a biography of two distinguished women in the church. The six following books contain a history of the church under the kings: Ezra, Nehemiah, and a part of Daniel, relate the history of the church in captivity, and on her return; Esther describes a remarkable deliverance of the church; Job is a poetical discussion of the doctrine of Divine providence, as old as the time of Moses, if not older; the Psalms are the songs used by the ancient church in her worship; the book of -Proverbs contains a part of the three thousand proverbs spoken by Solomon, with an introductory discourse of nine chapters, and are a storehouse of practical wisdom; Ecclesiastes is a discourse of Solomon upon the vanity of the world; the Song of Songs is one, and probably the best, of the thousand and five Songs of Solomon, and illustrates, by an allegory, the spiritual relation between Christ and his church; the books of the prophets are composed partly of sermons, and partly of prophecies, with an occasional history. The four Gospels are so many independent histories of the life of our Saviour while on earth; the Acts contains a history of the first missions of the Christian church, domestic and foreign; the Epistles are the letters of the missionaries to the churches they had planted, or to individual converts; and the book of Revelation is a prospective view of events in the history of the church. 5. Be governed by SUBJECTS, rather than by chapters and verses. divisions into chapters and verses is not inspired. The division into techapters was made about 600 years ago. The verses were made at Gperiods much more recent. A general arrangement of subjects would
be like the following, viz.: History; Biography; Doctrines; Duties; Promises; Proverbs; Prophecies; Divine Songs, &c. Under the head of HISTORY, would be creation; the fall; world before the flood; the flood; the dispersion; rise of the Jewish nation; the departure from Egypt; the crossing of the Red Sea; the wanderings in the wilderness; wars of Joshua; wars of the judges; the kings; the captivity; rebuilding of Jerusalem; changes in worship and religious customs, subsequent to the captivity; education of the ancient ministry of the church; remarkable prophecies; domestic missions of the Christian church; foreign missions; particular missionary tours; connection between the history and particular epistles; connection between sacred and profane history, &c. Under the head of BIOGRAPHY, might be the biography of statesmen, warriors, authors, prophets, reformers, apostles or missionaries, &c. Take a single subject, and examine it in order, with the aid of the best marginal references at command, and such other helps as can be had; relying chiefly, however, on the marginal references. If the subject be historical, collect the materials belonging to it from the different parts of the Bible, and arrange them; ascertain the geography and chronology of the several events; determine their relation to the more
remarkable contemporaneous events of profane history; and understand whatever is peculiar in the manners, customs, and opinions brought to view in the narrative. The classes should each have a leader, or monitor, and should proceed as much as possible on the plan of mutual instruction, and should never leave a subject till they think they understand it.
IT IS SO VERY DISCOURAGING.
How seldom can we visit a Sunday-school without hearing from some of the teachers such words as these: "It is so very discouraging." Now I would ask such, whether they have well considered those words, and if they speak from the sincere feelings of their hearts? One general complaint is, the boys are so unruly, and so lazy, that it really is "labour in vain!" Tell me, How do you know it is labour in vain? Perhaps you have not seen one particle of good resulting from all your efforts, up to the present time; but who can tell what will be the issue of next Sunday's teaching? What bounds or limits shall we place to God's almighty power? We should ever keep in mind that we are but instruments; it is not in us to convert the soul of a human being: but how often has God chosen the weakest of such, as the channel for his great designs? But dare we presume to say, "No good has been done." Suppose you have fastened one text of Scripture on a boy's mind, and he then leaves the school, and you see no more of him, are you dissatisfied because you do not see the reward of your labour? Perhaps you cease from your toils. Imagine yourself on your dying bed-a friend comes in and asks you, "Do you remember such and such an one? "Oh, yes!" you say. Suppose they could relate to you, that a text which be learned at the Sunday-school was, by the blessing of God, made useful to him in after years, what would be your first feeling-one of gratitude, or of self-reproach? Should we not be likely to hear such words as these: "Had I but known this some years back, I would not have ceased; but now it is too late!" Do such think that God loves them the more because their labour has had a reward? God looks at the motive which actuates the conduct, not the results; it is our duty to work unceasingly in faith, with the glory of God as our aim.
Perhaps another may say, "I have one or two very interesting boys in my class, but as to the others it is most discouraging; for really they seem to think least of the Bible than any thing else they possess." Did it ever occur to such that these demanded more of their time and love than the others. For what reasons were Sunday-schools established, and for whom? How disgusting is that sentimental way of talking about the children being so good" and "respectful," that it is quite a pleasure to teach them! Is not the soul of a Sabbath-breaker as precious in the sight of God, as the soul of one of these "respectful ones?" But there is a much stronger reason-from how much sin will you keep society by reclaiming one of these "discouraging ones?"
Think of uniting your efforts with God and the Redeemer in so grand a work as this! and whilst you see the glory of God revealed in
such an one, will you not desire to keep self back, lest the view of saving love should be obstructed. Does this seem the time with uplifted eyes and inward satisfaction to exclaim, "I am the means?" Sunday-school teachers must have but two points in view-God, and the soul to be saved!
N. A. N.
DR. W writing on agriculture, observes, that the successful advancement of the rural art depends on two circumstances: the one, its improvement by discovery or invention; the other, a more extensive practice of such improvements, when fully demonstrated. The former is effected by the contrivance of more perfect machines and implements of husbandry, which facilitate the progress of labour; the introduction of new articles of profitable culture, and the most advantageous method of treating those which have already been cultivated, though in a defective manner. The latter, namely, the practice, relates not only to future improvements, but likewise to those which, though generally known, have been either wholly neglected, or adopted only in particular places.
It may not be irrelevant to apply the above remarks to the subject of Sundayschool teaching. Although this useful mode of teaching has in thousands of instances been successful in the great object in view-the conversion of the soul-it may be said to be labouring under a twofold disadvantage. That of excellent plans being as yet but half digested; while such as are "generally known and approved," have been adopted only in particular places.
If the soil of our earth is capable of yielding an increase greater than has ever yet been proved by ingenious and laborious man, may not the painstaking teacher expect that the hearts of their precious charge would, under better culture be found to produce a more abundant harvest than they have ever ventured to hope for. Where are greater returns to be met with than the thirty, sixty, and hundred-fold of the Gospel seed!
THE SUNDAY-SCHOOL MAGAZINE.
THE MORNING CONFERENCE.
THIS breakfast meeting, gathered together a goodly number;-officers, and com
error; how often will they need reminding that the Union has no immense resources, but rather that it is in debt. The report, which was thoroughly practical, was five minutes. We cannot speak so highly read by the worthy Secretary in thirtyof all the speeches. Mr. Prest's was good, and would have been very effective but for
mittee, delegates, ministers, superin
tendents and teachers were there, and the opportunity for usefulness was great. If
its great length, and the unwise refer ence to a topic upon which Sunday-school teachers have over and over again expressed a strong opinion.
Mr. Bevan, and Mr. Weir, acquitted themselves nobly. Mr. Pottinger's was a first appearance, and though a Sundayschool teacher, he did not seem quite at
we say we were disappointed, we shall not be misunderstood. We are jealous for the right use of such occasions, and it is this feeling alone that prompts us to ask whether more could not have been done than was accomplished between half-past seven and eleven o'clock? Instead of delegates, who had an express mission, the chairman called upon London speakers, who were unprepared;-instead of discussing the practical questions affecting the schools, and eliciting information as to the state of country Unions, the chief time was spent in advertising the claims of various Magazines,-a very important matter in its way-but not the proper sequence to the admirable digest of business presented by Mr. Groser.
home. He would have done better in the West Riding of Yorkshire. Mr. Green, ever ready to take up the glove, ran a side-tilt at Mr. Prest, and won a cheer, while the meeting lost a speech. Mr. Bateman, the worthy and talented Editor of "The Bible-Class Magazine,” did his best, but could not be heard. We rejoice to know that he has an audience of fifteen thousand persons who listen to him in a
We would venture to suggest, that wider sphere of usefulness. The collection
was under £80. Surely the Committee would do well at once to appeal to the
another time the breakfast should be earlier, the meal simpler and shorter, the price lower, and the accommodation larger; that each delegate should be called upon by some prepared plan to speak for a given time, and to confine himself to practical matters. We should then have a fine specimen of the meeting we desire, and ample time for a real and
public; they have a strong claim, and must be supported by annual Subscriptions.
THE EVENING MEETING,
As is generally the case, was the best of the month. No cause had so many supporters, or better advocates; all that was wanting was more pecuniary help. It is a singular thing that people will live in
THE RAGGED SCHOOL UNION. sustained. The speeches were less sentiTHIS meeting was very cheering, and well mental, and took a higher tone than formerly; and the evident feeling of the friends of this institution is growing in favour of self-sustaining schools. Let it be ever so little, the poorest Englishman likes to pay, if he can, something; and after all, the greatest charity is to help men to help themselves.
very gently looked upon him, and smelled on him without sign of any further hurt." This was the amusement and sport of the British Solomon and his court.
Adam Smith born, 1723.-Dr. Sacheverell died, 1724.
THIS is the meridian of the seasons. The Anglo-Saxons called this month Sere month, from the dryness of the atmosphere; but more anciently weyd month, "because their beasts did then weyd in the meadows, that is to say, go to feed there; and hereof a meadow is also in the Teutonic called a weyd, and of weyd we yet retain our word wade, which we understand of going through watery places, such as meadows are wont to be."
The old law of wager of battle, in which personal combat was allowed, is abolished, 1819.
The Royal Exchange founded by Sir Thomas Gresham. His crest was a grasshopper.
About this time it is mid-winter in La Plata, South America.
1. The rebellion of Jack Cade, who, it will be remembered, in 1450, spoke thus of education: "Thou hast most traitorously corrupted the youth of the realm, in erecting a grammar school; and whereas before, our forefathers had no other books but the score and tally, thou hast caused printing to be used. Away with him he has a familiar under his tongue, he speaks not o' God's name." Sir Thomas More is tried at the bar of his own court, 1535.
In 1764, the number of slaves imported into Jamaica by the French, was 10,223. Slavery is now abolished in the colonies by the Provisional Government.
3. King James visits the Lions' Tower, 1605. After being forced from their den by burning links, "then there was two racks of mutton thrown unto them, which they did presently eat; then there was a lusty cock alive cast unto them, which they presently killed, and sucked his blood. After this the king caused a live lamb to be easily let down unto them by a rope; and being come to the ground, the lamb lay upon his knees, and both the lions stood in their former places, and only beheld the lamb; but presently the lamb rose up and went unto the lions, who
The execution of Archbishop Scroop, 1405. Henry IV. commanded the Chief Justice Gascoigne to pronounce upon him the sentence of death, but that inflexible judge refused, on the plea, that the laws gave him no jurisdiction over the life of the prelate, and that he had a right to be tried by his peers.
9. The ninth day of the Jewish month, Thammuz, was an especial fast for the taking of Jerusalem, under Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, upon that day, B. C. 587. The seventy years of the captivity, according to the prediction of Jeremiah, begins, B. C. 606, when the temple was plundered, and Daniel, with his three companions, who escaped from the furnace, were led away to the Assyrian capital.
11. Dugald Stewart died, 1828.-Roger Bacon died, 1294.
14. The Roman Republic established. Cicero has preserved the original laws of the Comitia, which subverted the tyranny and set up the commonwealth.
Martin Luther is excommunicated by a papal bull, 1520.
The famous decree, called the Confession of Augsburg, drawn up by Melancthon, was publicly read the same day, 1530.
Anson arrives at Spithead, 1744, after a voyage round the world, of three years and nine months. 21. Bishop Butler died, 1752.