Gambar halaman
PDF
ePub

AL 62,207,22 (3)

COLLEGE

HARVARD

July 31, 1837

LIBRARY
Mric. Ha, hale,

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1836, by

WILLIAM . PEIRCE, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.

STEREOTYFED BY T. G. WELLS & Co.

BOSTON

PREFACE.

Upon the Corner-Stone of faith in Jesus Christ, as the atoning sacrifice for sin, there is reared the superstructure of holy life and action; and a holy life, is one which, from the impulse of love to God, is occupied in doing good to man. The Young Christian was intended to introduce the reader to the first steps of the Christian life ; the Corner-Stone to explain some of the simpler elements of revealed religion; and now this work is intended to close the series, by giving the reader some general directions in respect to the great work which God has given him here to do.

In thus bringing this series of Illustrations of Christianity to a close, I cannot but express my acknowledge ments for the favorable manner with which the community has received these humble attempts to divest religion of its theological and scholastic garb, and to present it in its simplicity, to the common classes of society. I have been indebted to the criticisms which the former volumes have called forth, for many valuable suggestions, of which I have availed myself in the later editions of those volumes, and sometimes in the trains of thought pursued in this. Now, however, although I bring the series to a close, the reader must not expect' to find that the whole ground is explored, nor complain if he finds many important subjects wholly omitted. To go over the whole field of religious truth and duty, as minutely as I have examined those particular

views of it which are brought forward in this work, would require a hundred voluines instead of three. I hope, therefore, that the critic will not charge me with culpable omissions, even if he should find some important subjects not treated of in these volumes.

There is one subject to which I wish the above remarks to be especially applied. I mean the great subject of progress in personal holiness

I should be very sorry, if, by devoting my concluding volume to instructions on the Way to Do Good, I should convey the idea that the proper performance of outward acts of benevolence constitutes the sole, or even the principal work of the Christian life. To describe the believer's inward conflicts with sin, bis trials, and temptations, and struggles; his fears, and hopes, and joys; to delineate, in a word, the road by which he finds his way from step to step, to the highest degree of personal sanctification attainable here, is a task of a very far higher character than any which I have attempted in these volumes. That road is one which can be described only by one who has travelled it; and years of extended Christian experience, or else very uncommon spiritual qualifications, could alone justify the attempt.

Though these works are thus necessarily limited in Țespect to their range, I have endeavored to exhibit nothing in them but truth. I have endeavored to exhibit that truth too, which is most obvious, and most important in its bearings; and which may have the most immediate and direct influence upon the feelings of the heart, in promoting intelligent, devoted and happy piety.

THE AUTHOR.

Boston, March, 1836.

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER 1.-WORKS AND FAITH, OR THE STORY OF ALONZO.

Works and Faith. Alonzo's home. The farm-yard. Occupations of

childhood. The phenomenon. A struggle. Dialogue with com

science. Early sin. Its nature. Self deception. A second trans-

gression. Progress ia sin. The heart deceitful above all things.

Progress. Influence of education. Alonzo's virtues. His piety.

The way to manage conscience. Alonzo's discovery. Asking mother.

Material firmness. Effects. The seat in the orchard. Conflicting

emotions. Healing the hurt slightly. Alonzo's opinio i of himself.

An incident. The walk through the woods. Conversation. The

books in the satchel. Motives. An exposure. The teacher's que

ries. Alonzo's perplexity. His reflections. Alonzo's virtues not

genuine. Summary of Alonzo's character. His occupations and

pleasures. Character of his prayers. The evening meeting. Set-

ting off. Nine o'clock. The Holy Spirit. Morning cloud and

early dew. Wandering thoughts. Concealment. Slow progress.

Alonzo jike the water skipper. Difficulties. Resolutions. Hop-

ing for a more convenient season. Alonzo's new home. Prepara..

tions. Taking possession. A hard duty. Conscience again. No

gain in delay. The inquiry meeting. Scene. The Pastor's remarks.

Common mistakes made. Difference between understanding and

feeling. Spurious gratitude. Indications of enmity. Alonzo's self

application The closing prayer. Alonzo in deeper difficulty than

“Sin revived.” Conviction not conversion. Alonzo's ex-

cuses and difficulties. His heart. Helplessness. Struggling with

sin. Beginning life anew, a vain wish. Self righteousness. Re-

pairing an old house. The parallel case. The true way of salva.

tion. Alonzo renewed. His walk home. New desires. The great

change. Created anew. Address to the reader. Conclusion.

Motives. Happiness secured by Doing Good. Scene at home. The

stormy evening. Enjoyments. Another plan. The walk. The
sick boy. Enjoyment of another kind. The return. Happiness
secured though not directly sought. Various motives : perhaps not

Personal happiness. A distinction. Love of fame or of power distinct

from love of happiness. Love of happiness often overpowered.

The merchants. Happy rather than rich. Questions to the reader.

Thorough repentance and conversion. A common case. Incipient

neglect of prayer. Backsliding. The usual steps. Necessity of

entire reconciliation with God. 2. Order in worldly affairs. Effects

of system. History of James. His morning's duties. Procrasti-

nation. Its folly. James's sufferings. Shiftlessness ;-disorder;-

confusion,--and misery. James's character. Settled and perma-

nent unhappiness. The application. Necessary condition of hap-

piness. The master of a family. Regulation. The mistress.

Drawers and closets. Order. Review and arrangement of du-

ties. Peace of mind. Advice to a school-boy. Desks, drawers,

implements, books. The man of business. Unsettled accounts ;

unfinished plans. Selection of objects. Expenses and pecuniary

liabilities. Peruniary embarrassment. Way to avoid. Conten-

tions The Christian principle. Conflicting claims. Non-resist-

Isaac's principle. Effects of opposition and contention.

Defencelessness. The Indian. An objection. The question of

Occasions of contention. Case supposed. The travellers

and their guide. The Christian principle. The worldly principle.

Way in which quarrels originate. Our Savior's precept. Misery

of contention. Way to avoid it. Repining against God. Losses.

Disappointments. Joseph's case. Lesson to be learned from it.

Purposes of sickness. The sick mother. The man of business.

The sick child. Daty of submission. The responsibility of the

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »