• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 The value of the Bible
 The sin of stealing
 What Christ came for
 The sin of disobedience
 The duty of prayer
 Back Cover
 Spine






Title: Early duties and early dangers
CITATION PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00003248/00001
 Material Information
Title: Early duties and early dangers
Physical Description: 112 p., 1 leaf of plates : col. ill. ; 15 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Dickes, William, 1815-1892 ( Illustrator )
Gall & Inglis ( Publisher )
Houlston and Wright ( Publisher )
Publisher: Gall & Inglis
Houlston & Wright
Place of Publication: Edinburgh
London
Publication Date: <1862?>
 Subjects
Subject: Christian life -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Theft -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Salvation -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Obedience -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Prayer -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Hand-colored illustrations -- 1862   ( local )
Gold stamped cloth (Binding) -- 1862   ( local )
Bldn -- 1862
Genre: Hand-colored illustrations   ( local )
Gold stamped cloth (Binding)   ( local )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
Scotland -- Edinburgh
 Notes
General Note: Hand-colored frontispiece signed W. Dickes.
General Note: Baldwin Library copy inscribed date: 1862.
Funding: Brittle Books Program
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00003248
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002225627
oclc - 13877562
notis - ALG5902
 Related Items
Other version: Alternate version (PALMM)
PALMM Version

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
    Frontispiece
        Frontispiece
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 3
        Page 4
    The value of the Bible
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
    The sin of stealing
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
    What Christ came for
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
    The sin of disobedience
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
    The duty of prayer
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
Full Text


























































The Baldwin Library
University
of
m Fkid,


























i9


_ I ___ ~:~~__ -~












































































and












(Sarlg gties


AND


EARLY DANGER&


binbiturgJ:
GALL & INGLIS, 6 GEORGE STREET.
LONDON : HOULTON & WRIGHT.


- i



















CONTENTS.





PAGE
THE VALUE OF THE BIBLE, 5

THE SIN OF STEALING, .27

WHAT CHRIST CAME FOR, 52

THE SIN OF DISOBEDIENCE, 65

THE DUTY OF PRAYER, 85
















arfIg guties f tdly rangers.


THE VALUE OF THE BIBLE.

WHAT a beautiful thing the sun is! As I
came out of my house this morning, walked to
church, and felt the sun shining upon me, it
made me feel warm, comfortable, and happy.
I was led to think how much good it does to
our earth. It causes the grass to grow, the
flowers to bloom so beautifully, and the fruit
to ripen so sweetly. It gives us light by day;
so that we can see to walk about without the
fear of falling over anything, and do whatever
business we may have. It gives us warmth
better than that of a fire; for it does not burn,
nor scorch us-so that, on a fine sunny morn-
ing everybody seems cheerful, happy, and well
There is something in it that creates joy and




6 EARLY DUTIES AND
pleasure; and causes us, whenever we meet a
friend, to congratulate each other on the bright
clear day.
But supposing we had no sun-supposing
we were left to go about in the dark-we
should be cold, miserable, and unhappy. We
should have no bright, green grass growing
in our fields; we should have no beautiful
flowers blooming in our gardens; and no sweet
and delicious fruit on our trees. When we
went to walk we could not see; we should
stumble and fall over everything we met with,
and should leave our business undone. Our
earth would become cold and dreary, and we
should almost freeze to death. We should
hardly know what joy and pleasure were; and
when we met, we should not feel like congra-
tulating each other, but only grumble at our
misery.
In a part of the world, towards the north
pole, there live a people who only see the sun
six months in the year. The rest of the year
is dark; it is all cold; and because the sun is
seen so little and shines so seldom, the country
is barren. There is no grass-only a few trees
can live there; and these are very small and
poor. There are no sweet flowers-no delight-





EARLY DANGERS. 7
ful birds to sing in the trees and gardens. but
all is silent as death. The ground is covered
with snow, and the rocks, trees, and houses
with ice. Only a few animals live there-the
bear and the fox-the wolf and the reindeer
-the dog and the seal. The men and women
who are there are cold and cruel, ignorant
and wicked, idle and selfish. And why is
all this? Because they have not the sun
as we have. They have the light of the
moon, and other things; but that light has
no warmth in it.
Well, as I thought of this-what this sun
was to the natural world in which we live,
and all the good it is to us, I thought the
Bible was to the religious world. It is the
Christian's Sun, that gives life, warmth, and
happiness. Without this sun we but grope
our way, in darkness-we do not feel the
warmth of love-we do not love ourselves or
our neighbours as we ought, until it shines
upon us and warms us.
Now look at it 1 It does not appear very
bright as I hold it up-it is not very large,
nor is it very beautiful It is not half so
beautiful, to look at, as the sun which we
saw and felt shining upon us this morning.





8 EARLY DUTIES AND
Yet if this sun has ever shone upon any per-
son-if he has felt its warmth-if he has seen
its light and brightness, he would not ex-
change it for the sun in the heavens. No!-
he would not give it up for the whole world!
For it lights up, like a sun or a lamp, the
path we have to travel through this wicked
world; it gives us comfort, joy, and peace,
and will never go down until God takes us to
live and dwell with Himself for ever,' where
there shall be no night, and where we shall
not need a candle, neither the light of the
sun; for the Lord God shall give us light, and
we shall reign with him for ever.'
I was in a shop, the other day, where they
make and sell a great number of India-rubber
articles. I saw some very curious ones-
different sizes, shapes, and colours. I asked
their use, and was told they were life-pre-
servers, that were fastened on to people to
keep them from sinking. They took down one
and shewed it to me. It seemed very thin
and delicate, as if it should break when
dashed against a rock or anything hard.
These life-preservers they fill with air, which
makes them float. Without it they would
be useless. How very slight and frail they





EARLY DANGERS. 9
are!' thought I; 'a little pin could spoil
them.' And as I looked at them I thought,
'Well, I have a better life-preserver than any
of these. I have one that no rock can break
-one full of breath, that no pin can spoil.
I have one that has saved the lives of
thousands, and which I hope will save my
life.'
And what do you think it is? Why, here
it is-this dear Bible is my life-preserver !-
and I will trust my life with it anywhere.
We, you know, on account of our sin, are
just like men drowning, in a river or an
ocean, and God gives us this life-preserver,
to float us to the shore of heaven. Those
who will take it, put it on, and trust them-
selves to it, will be saved; but if we throw it
away, if we treat it carelessly, and refuse to
use it, we shall sink and be drowned for
ever.
Now, a life-preserver is of no use held in
your hand-no use lying at home on your
shelf. It is of no use if you know how to use
it, but still neglect to put it on. Just so it
is with the Bible. You may have one, and
carry it always about with you-you may
get one beautifully gilt and fall of pictures,





IU EARLY DUTIES AND
only to be taken down from the shelf and
looked at now and then, as a treat-you may
know the use of the Bible, and God's object
in giving it to you; yet unless you make it a
part of yourself-hide it, as David said he did
with his, in his heart, to prevent his sinning
against God, it will do you no good. You
may have a Bible, and know the Bible; but
you must love the Bible, obey the Bible, and
follow the Bible. That is to say-you must
make it your life-preserver. Think how many
little boys and girls whose lives it has pre-
served; whose lives it has made happy, and
whose death it has made peace.
Will you, then, have the Bible as your life-
preserver ?-not as a mere story-book-not as
a Sunday-school task-book-not as a Sunday
book only? but will you have it like a rope
thrown to a drowning man, to draw him to
shore with? Will you have it as a plank you
can lean upon in the water, and that will keep
you from sinking until you arrive at land? or
will you have it as a lump of lead fastened to
your neck to sink you for ever in the great
ocean of eternity ? For remember, if it does
not save your life, it will destroy it Without
it you cannot be saved--with it you can,





EARLY DANGERS. 11
for 'it is able to make thee wise unto sal-
vation.'
I remember having read the following story
or parable some time ago. There was once a
good man who was very rich, and he built a
large and beautiful ship at his own expense,
-with his own hands. He fitted her up,
with a pilot who knew the coast, a rudder by
which to steer her, and a compass to point
out the way she might sail He had every-
thing ready-he then called some of his neigh-
bours together, and said, 'See this beautiful
ship full of costly goods, and ready for sea, in
perfect order; with everything that can pos-
sibly be wanting on board, for your life, com-
fort and happiness. You may have her and
everything in her, and go and trade wherever
you please, on one condition. There must
not be a single drop of ardent spirits carried
on board. If you will promise me this, you
may have her. It is the only condition I
ask, and it is a very reasonable one,-for if
you were to get drunk, you would run the
ship upon a rock, and not only would my
vessel be lost, but all of you with her!
The friends thought it was very right and
reasonable he should ask such a condition,





12 EARLY DUTIES AND
and very easy for them to assent to it. They
therefore accepted the offer, made the promise,
and soon set sail for a distant country.
They had not, however, been long at sea
before one of the company brought out some
ardent spirits, which he said he had brought
to be taken in case of sickness. He said he
did not feel as well as he wished, and would
take a little just to make him better. He did
not wish to disobey for a single moment the
kind, good man who had given him the ship;
but he thought he had been a little too strict.
So he drank some; and asked one, and then
another, to try a little. Thus they all drank
until they were drunk, and knew not how to
manage the vessel.
Soon the night came on, and the winds be-
gan to blow-the air to feel cold, and the
waves of the ocean to rise higher and higher,
and to foam as they dashed against each other
and against the ship. In a short time the
wind and the waves carried her away with
them until she struck upon a rock Here
she began to rock about-first to this side
and then to that-creaking and cracking and
threatening to go to pieces every moment. The
people on board were too drunk to see and





EARLY DANGER. 13
know their danger. The morning came-itwas
still cold-the water dashed upon the ship
and froze upon everything it touched. The
poor people were cold and chilled, and hardly
able to save themselves on board. They had
now got over their drunkenness, so far as to
know and feel their danger. The shore,
which they could see, was not far off, yet none
of them could get to it. The waves continued
to roll and dash so high that no boat could
come from the shore to their assistance. It
would be upset and swallowed in the ocean
in a moment, and their own boat had been
washed away.
Just in their most miserable condition, a
man is seen coming quickly to the shore.
'Who is it?' they all exclaim. Why it is the
good man that built the ship, fitted her up,
and gave her to these people. He knows
they have disobeyed him and ruined the ship;
yet he pities them, just ready to perish. But
how is he going to help them? See! what is
he about?-Why he is building a little boat,
and he fills it with his own breath, so that it
cannot sink. It will float and pass over the
highest wave and the roughest water, and
the fiercest winds cannot upset it It is





14 EARLY DUTIES AND
called a life-boat; because it can go out on
the most stormy water to save the lives of
perishing men who are shipwrecked. Having
finished, he launches it upon the waters. Is
he going, himself to manage it, and bring
those perishing creatures to shore ? No; but
he is going to send his only son, who pities
them just the same as the father does; and
who has offered to go and save them.
Away the little boat starts, straight to the
ship, skipping over the waves, and bounding
over the waters like a feather. The poor
people are looking on eagerly, fearing lest
some great wave should swallow it up; and
they know they must perish except it can
reach and save them. Look! one of the poor
wretches has been washed overboard and is
lost! Yet no the life-boat reached him just
in time, and picked him up. One, and then
another, gets in-the little boat returns with
its load across the water to the shore, and
lands them safe. Again it comes; back-
wards and forwards it has been all day, till
dark; so that all may have an opportunity
of getting on shore, if they please..
But some are ashamed to see the face of
the good man, therefore hang back, and do






EARLY DANGERS. 15
not get into the life-boat. One says, 'The
risk is very great-it has carried others I
know, but then it may not carry me,-it will
not always make successful trips. The'boat
is too small-too mean, and her captain is not
the man I should choose. If I might steer
myself I would go.' Then another says,
'Well, I would rather save myself than be
dependent on any one.' Some are so back-
ward that they are not ready yet-the next
trip will do for them; so they go on and
treat the kindness of the good man with con-
tempt. One takes a plank, another a mast-
another anything that will float, and they
cast themselves into the water and are
drowned; whilst all those who accepted the
kind offer of the life-boat, got into it, and
trusted themselves to the care of the good
man's -on, were saved and the others were
lost.
They all deserved to be lost, did they not ?
Having now heard my parable, listen to its
-interpretation. This world in which we live,
is the ship. God is the good man, who
built it, fitted it up, and gave it; and we are
the people who became drunk and ready to
perish-for we are drunk with sin, ruined





16 EARLY DUTIES AND
and lost: the angels are those on shore, who
wished to help, but could not; and the Bible
is the life-boat which comes from the shores
of eternity, and offers to carry us back to
God. Jesus Christ is in it from the first
chapter of Genesis to the last of Revelation.
He is in it all through. It does not seem a
very large life-boat-does it? but still all who
get in, it will carry safe. If Jesus were not
in it, it would not be safe to trust ourselves
to it; but so long as He is there, we need fear
no evil.
Now, will you come, and get into this life-
boat; trust yourselves to the care of Jesus, and
let it carry you to heaven? If so, you must
learn to love it, to read, and to understand it;
you must let it carry you the way it sees best.
You must not try to carry it, and make it say
things it never meant. You must believe it
when it says that we are all sinners,-lost,
ruined, and dying; when it tells us that
God is angry with the wicked every day-
when it tells us how 'God so loved the world,
and sent His only Son into the world, that
whosoever believeth on Him should not perish
but have everlasting life.' If you believe this,
it will lead you to Jesus as your Saviour, and





EARLY DANGERS. 17
you should be saved through Him. I hope
you will not forget the three things I have
compared the Bible to, the Sun, the Life-
preserver, and the Life-boat.
But some persons ask, what is the use of
the Bible ?
A little boy often amused himself by look-
ing over the pictures of a large Bible, and his
mother, one day, said to him, John, do you
know the use of the Bible He said, No,
mother.' Then, John, my son, you must go
and ask your father.' Soon afterwards, John
ran to his father and said, 'I should like to
know what is the use of the Bible?' His
father said, 'I will tell you another time,
John.' The boy was very much disappointed,
and walked away. A few days afterwards
the father took his son to a house where there
was a woman very ill in bed, and began to
talk to her. She said she had suffered much
pain, but hoped she was resigned to the will
of God. Do you think,' said the father,
'God does right to let you feel so much pain ?'
' Oh yes,' she replied, 'for God is my heavenly
Father. He loves me, and I am sure He
would not let me suffer unless it were for my
good.' The father then asked, 'How is it that
B






18 EARLY DUTIES AND
you find your sufferings do you good?' She
said, 'My sufferings are good for my soul.
They make me more humble and more patient;
they make me feel the value of Jesus more,
and they make me pray more. I'm sure all
these things are good for me.'
Little John had been very attentive, and
the tears stood in his eyes while the poor
afflicted woman was talking. His father
looked at him, and then said to the sick
woman, 'Can you tell me what is the use of
the Bible?' John listened very eagerly to
hear what she could say. 0 sir,' said she,
' the Bible has been my comfort in my afflic-
tion.' 'There; John,' said his father, 'now
you know one use of the Bible-it can give
us comfort when we need it most.'
If you could have gone with me one day,
and seen a dear little boy who was so crippled
that he could not even open his Bible, which
he was very fond of reading, you would have
found out, like little John, what was the use
of the Bible. I said to him one day, 'You
seem very fond of reading that book-why
do you do,it?' 'I like to read the Bible,' he
said, 'because it tells me of Jesus Christ.'
'Do you think,' I said, 'you have believed in






EARLY DANGERS. 19
Jesus Christ as your Saviour?' Yes, that I
have,' he instantly replied. 'What makes
you think so V I asked. 'Because He enables
me to suffer my afflictions patiently.'
A lady once said to a poor blind woman,
who was being led about by another, 'My
good woman, how dark and dreary the world
must be to you!' It would, indeed, be dark
and dreary butfor the light within. It is the
Bible that gives me light-that shines upon
my path; though blind, I can yet see.'
Now, all who know and believe the Bible,
love it, and would give everything for it.
There was a little boy who had several brothers
and sisters. His father and mother often used
to read to the children out of the Bible. This
little boy became very fond of it, and de-
termined to get one of his own. He saved all
the money he could get-he would not spend
a penny of it. The rest of the family called
him a little miser, for they did not know what
he was about. When he had got enough he
went out without saying a word to any one,
and returned with a small parcel in his hand,
wrapped up in paper. As soon as he got into
the house he began to cry out, 'I have got it!
I have got it!' They crowded round him,





20 EARLY DUTIES AND
saying, What have you got?' He opened the
parcel and took out a Bible. Some of the
children thought he was foolish, and laughed
at him. But he took no notice of that-he
always loved it, and now I believe he is a mi-
nister of the gospel, and has preached many a
sermon out of that very Bible.
'Some time in the winter,' says one of the
colporteurs from Western New York, I met
a German on the road, who said he had been
two years in this country without a Bible. He
wanted one very much; and when I told him
I had given the last I had away, he looked as
if he would have cried. I promised him I
would soon come again, and bring him one.
He lived in a backwood place where there was
no public Toad, so that it was some time be-
fore I could get there. When I went to the
place where he told me he lived, and saw the
miserable hut, I thought it was impossible for
any one to live there. On going in, however,
I found him lying on some boards put up like
a bedstead, and very sick of fever. His wife
lay sick on another like it. As I took him by
the hand he seemed very much pleased to see
me. But when I held out the Bible to him,
he appeared hardly able to contain himself



______






EARLY DANGERS. 21
with joy. He took it, and held it up to his
wife, saying, 'Here it is!--We have got it at
last!'-and the little children, almost without
clothing as they were, hopped about for joy.
One of the children went and got the very last
halfpenny of money they had, and offered to
pay for the Bible. But when I saw they
had neither table, bed, nor chair in their
cabin, I refused to take any payment. The
man said I should take it, as he was determined
to pay for the Bible. The tears came into his
eyes, and he would not let me go without the
money. I could not help crying too, when I
found a person who loved the Bible and God
so much. I think it was beyond the widow's
two mites, which Christ speaks of with so
much praise.
A gentleman was once travelling in Wales,
on foot, and being rather tired and thirsty, he
stopped at the door of a cottage where there
was a little girl seated reading. He asked her
if she would give him a little water. 'Oh,
yes, sir,' she said, 'if you will come in, mother
will give you some milk and water.' The
little girl then returned to her seat and book.
As he came out, he said, seeing her still read-
ing, 'Well, my little girl, are you getting your





22 EARLY DUTIES AND
task?' 'Oh, sir,' said she, 'I am reading my
Bible.' 'But,' said he, 'you are getting your
task out of the Bible?' Oh no, sir, the Bible
is no task-it is a pleasure.'
How very different this is from many little
boys and girls! They wish Sunday was over,
because they have to go to Sunday-school, and
learn a hymn, a catechism, or a few verses out
of the Bible. And how often do you see them
getting weary in the class, gaping and stretch-
ing themselves, and becoming very restless-
shewing that they look upon it all as a task,
and a very disagreeable task too. It all comes
of not loving God, and Jesus, and the Bible.
I remember it has been said of good King
Edward VI. of England, that when the Bible
fell by accident on the floor, he picked it up
and kissed it, placing it again on the table, to
shew his love and respect for it.
This recalls to my mind another story about
a little blind boy. His parents had bought a
Bible made particularly for the blind, with all
the words and letters raised, so that by feeling
they could be read. It was in several large
volumes. Not long after the little boy had
received the books, his mother saw him retire
to the room where they were kept She






EARLY DANGERS. 23
stepped softly to the door to see what he would
do. Now why, do you think, dear children,
did the good little boy go alone to his room ?
I will tell you-his mother saw him kneeling
down by the side of those precious volumes,
and lifting up his hands in prayer, to return
thanks to God for this blessed gift. He then
rose from his knees, and, taking up one of the
volumes in his arms, hugged and kissed it,
and laid it aside. He took up the next, and
so on, until he had in this simple and pleasing
manner signified his love for each of the
volumes which spread before his mind the
wonder and glory of God's love to fallen man.
How very differently do many of you treat
the Bible! Some of you, I am afraid, don't
think it worth half as much as some of your
story-books.
But listen to how much a poor coloured
girl, who was a slave, thought it was worth.
She had had one given her at Sunday-school,
and she loved it so much that she made it her
constant companion. One day her master
asked her what book that was she had always
in her hand. She told him it was a Bible,
and shewed it. He asked where she got it.
She told him it was at Sunday-school. He






z2 EARLY DUTIES AND
then thought he would try her, and asked her
how much she would sell it for. She said no
money could buy it. 'Well, Nancy, if you
will give me this Bible, I will give you your
freedom.' No, Sir,' she quickly replied, I
would rather be a slave for ever than part
with it. You may bind me with a thousand
chains, but don't take away my Bible!'
Would any of you be willing to be a slave
rather than lose your Bible ? or would any of
you be willing to be bound with only one
chain, in order that you could read, study,
and own the Bible?
There was a widow woman who had only
one son whom she loved very dearly, and
tried to bring up in the fear of God. But he
proved ungrateful for all her care, and gave
her a great deal of trouble. At last he de-
termined to go to sea When his mother
went to bid him good-bye she gave him a
New Testament, with her own name and his
written in it. She begged him to keep the
book and read it for her sake. 'He was borne
far away upon the ocean, and year after year
passed, but no letter or news from the poor
sailor boy.
One day, while on a visit to London, she met






EARLY DANGERS. 25
aseacaptain, and asked him if he knewanything
of the vessel and of the young man named
Charles. Oh yes,' he replied, 'the vessel was
wrecked some time ago, and that young man,
Charles, was the worst young man I ever met.
It would be a good thing if all such wicked
fellows were at the bottom of the sea.' The
poor unhappy mother left the company and
the house, with almost a broken heart, and
moved her residence near the sea shore. After
.some few years had rolled by, a poor half-
naked sailor one day knocked at her door, and
asked for some relief. She told him to walk in,
that she loved sailors, and was the mother of
a poor sailor boy, who was somewhere on the
ocean. She sat and listened to his tale-how
he had been several times wrecked, and once
a fine young fellow and himself were the only
persons saved.
We were cast on a desert island,' he said,
'and after a few days of suffering and want,
the poor fellow died.' Here the tears began
to run down his cheeks. He read day and
night,' he continued, 'out of a little book
which he said his mother had given him, and
which was the only thing he saved. He wept
over his sins and kissed the little book. He





26 EARLY DUTIES AND
talked of nothing but this little volume, and
his good kind mother who was far away. At
last he gave it to me, saying,' Here, Jack, take
this little book, keep it, and read it. May
God bless you! 'Tis all Ihave got;' and he
clasped my hand and died. And here is that
very little book,' he said, taking it out of his
jacket pocket.
The poor widow took the book, looked at
it, opened it, saw her own handwriting, be-
held the name of her lost son, and exclaimed:
'This boy was lost and is found; was dead,
and is now alive.' When she had somewhat
recovered, she said: Will you not part with
this book? for I am the mother of that sailor
boy, and I gave him this book. I would prize
it more than anybody.' 'Oh, no 1' said he, 'I
could not part with it. Money could not buy
it. He gave it to me with his dying hand,
and I value it more than any one else. It
has saved my life, and been the means of
changing my heart. No, I will never part
with it until my soul and body part in
death.'
Now, my dear children, what a very pre-
cious and dear book that must be, which could
do so much for two wicked sailors. That






EARLY DANGERS. 27
same book you have, and it can do as much
for you. But you must read it carefully, and
pray to God that, whilst you do so, His Holy
Spirit may open your eyes, and teach you how
to read it, as a lamp unto your feet. Let it
direct you; and when you are going anywhere,
S or to do anything, and this Bible will not
light up your path, do it not, but make it
the man of your counsel, and the guide of
your youth.'



THE SIN OF STEALING.

Some might suppose from my choosing this
subject, that there were a great many thieves
among little boys and girls here; but if he were
to go through the Sunday-school, see how fond
the children appear of it-how attentive they
are to what the teachers have to say;-were
he to hear how plain I speak to you, and shew
you by my beautiful stories, the evils and
dangers of doing what God has forbidden in
the Bible, he would say it is impossible there
could be any little boy amongst you so bad,
or any little girl so mean, as to steal. But it
is not enough to tell children what is right-





28 EARLY DUTIES AND
they often will not do what they are told.
They hear but do not heed-they promise but
do not perform. They are like the son
spoken of in the parable of the New Testa-
ment. His father said, Go work in my vine-
yard.' He answered,' Yes, Sir, I am going,'
but did not go after all
Now, many, if not all of you, hear good
lessons every Sunday from your teachers.
You seem to like them very much, and come
very regularly, but you don't mind what is
said. It goes in at one ear and out at the
other.
Listen, now, to this fable. A shepherd
was walking by the side of a brook, and as he
looked over on the other side he saw a wolf
He cried out, and said, 'Oh, wicked, cruel
wolf! Your jaws are all red with the blood
of my lambs.' The wolf nodded his head, as
much as to say,' Yes, Sir.' Oh, wolf,' added
the shepherd, how pleasant it is to eat grass
-how much better than to suck the blood of
poor innocent lambs!' The wolf nodded his
head in assent again. 'Oh, wolf I think
your cruelty must make you feel very bad,'
continued the shepherd, when you remember
all the pain and suffering of those little lambs






EARLY DANGERS. .2
you kill. You ought to be grieved and sorry,
and cry out when you think of it.' The wolf
howled, as much as to say, 'Yes, that's very
true.' Then the kind shepherd lifted up his
hand and said, 'Oh, wolf, promise me you
will be kind, and let my poor little lambs
alone. Eat grass in future instead of them !'
He nodded his head very low, as if he would
say, I will, Sir.' But the wolf was a wolf
still. His nature was not changed-he still
thirsted for blood; and as soon as the shep-
herd's back was turned, he looked over into
the meadow where the little lambs were feed-
ing quietly, and playing about so frisky, and
said, The shepherd will not know anything
about it, if I run over quickly and catch one
of them.' So over he went, caught one, and
ate it up. Here you see the wolf made very
fair and good promises; but he soon forgot
them all.
This illustrates the fact to us that the evil
nature of you children must be changed by
God, or all our teaching and preaching will
be of no use.
In taking up a newspaper the other day, I
saw an advertisement which was very different
from other advertisements. It was not a house






30 EARLY DUTIES AND
that was wanted-it was not a teacher, nor a
common servant;-it was an honest, industri-
ous boy. 'Why, surely this is not very hard
to find,' thought I; 'all little boys ought to
be honest and industrious.' But when I came
to think how many temptations boys have-
how many little thieves I remembered hearing
about, and how many of them I have seen
with my own eyes, I hardly knew where I
could positively go for an honest, industrious
boy. Such a boy is always wanted-he will
be sought for, respected, and loved by all who
know him. His employers will speak well of
him; and when he grows up to be a man, he
will be known and valued for his honest and
industrious character. Who wants an honest
boy? Why, the merchant for a clerk-the
mechanic for an apprentice and journeyman.
The client will want him for his lawyer; the
sick man for his doctor; the father and
mother as teacher for their children; the
people for an officer; and the congregation
for a clergyman.
Who wants an honest boy ? Why, the in-
habitants of a city or village for a neighbour;
a neighbour for a friend ; a family for a visi-
tor; and the school-fellow for an acquaintance
$






EARLY DANGERS. 31,
and companion. 'An honest, industrious boy
wanted.' Why, only think of it, boys. Will
any of you answer to such a description ? Can
you go to the person who put that in the
newspaper, and say, Sir, I am an honest, in-
dustrious boy ?' You may be smart and
quick, but that is not honest. You may un-
derstand what is required to be done, but that
is not honest. You may be well dressed and
look respectable, but that is not honest.
Could you refer such a person to your parents,
your friends, your teachers, or your school-
fellows, confident that they know nothing
against you? Now, let me tell you that if
you are not honest, you will never get along
in this world. You may deceive once or
twice; but remember the text, Be sure your
sins will find you out;' and you never will be
happy, because you will be ashamed of your-
self, and in constant fear lest others should
find you out.
There were two little girls in a family who
were as fond of each other as sisters generally
are; and the younger one, whose name was
Jane, had a halfpenny with which she wished
to buy a fig. Being too sick to go down to
the store herself, she asked Harriet, her older






32 EARLY DUTIE8 AND
sister, to go. She went accordingly, and as
she was returning with the fig done up very
nicely in a paper, the thought suddenly oc-
curred to her, that she would like to look at
it, and see if it were like other figs. She
opened the paper very carefully, and it looked
so very nice, just like a delicious one that
had been given to her not long before. She
wondered whether it was really as good as it
looked. At length she said to herself, 'I
think I can nibble off the top, and nobody
will know anything about it. If it is ob-
served, why I can say it must have been done
in the box, and no one will be anything the
wiser.' So she put it up to her mouth and
took off the end. It really was just like the
other, and so good that she nibbled a bit
more, and without thinking kept on nibbling
until half the fig was gone That which was
left was just as good; and what was she to
say at home now? She must be found out.
And what do you think she did? She ate
up the whole of it, and felt very uncomfort-
able. How faithless she had been to her sick
sister-how much the latter would be disap-
pointed, and what disgrace she had brought
upon herself-and all for a little fig! She





EARLY DANGERS. 33
knew she had done wrong; but what was to
be done? She thought of running off some-
where, but did not exactly know where to go.
It was long before she reached home, but
never did she feel so unwilling to go there
before.
At last the Devil told her what to say.
So up stairs she went as quickly as possible,
-that it might soon be over,-and told her
sister that she was very sorry, but had lost
the halfpenny; she said she had hunted for
it but could not find it. When poor Jane
heard it she began to cry; it fretted her very
much. Harriet could not bear to see her
cry; nor did she like to stop in the room as
she used before, lest any one should ask her
more about it. With a heavy heart she went
down into the garden to play. That little
fig was as heavy as a thousand pounds. She
tried to think of other things, but all in vain.
Her guilt stared her steadily in the face, and
she was as unhappy as a little girl could be.
Although it only wanted a short time until
dinner, it seemed a whole day. She had
hitherto been glad when she heard the bell
ring for dinner, but now she was afraid to
hear it. She would have given all she pos-
'0





34 EARLY DUTIES AND
sessed not to have eaten Jane's fig. When
the bell rang for dinner, she was obliged to
come in. She looked very shy, but tried to
appear as if nothing had happened. Presently
little Jane came in; her eyes were red with
crying, and she appeared very unhappy. Her
father immediately asked what was the
matter. When her mother told him what
had happened, and how Harriet had lost the
halfpenny, he turned towards the latter, and
with a kind look said, 'Well, Harriet, where-
abouts did you lose it? After dinner I will
go and try if we cannot both together find
it.' This was more than poor Harriet could
stand; but bursting into tears and hiding
her face in her hands, she cried out, 'Oh,
father, I did not lose the halfpenny, but I
ate the fig.'
There was silence then; nobody spoke;
and she felt as if all the family were separated
from her. She got up from the table. All
that afternoon, next day, and the whole week,
her feelings were very melancholy.
S See, from this story, how unhappy Harriet
was, merely because she had eaten a fig. How
hard-hearted a thief must he be that would
take a little thing like a fig from a poor sick






EARLY DANGERS. 35
sister! Oh, it is a wicked thing to steal.
God has forbidden it in one of His command-
ments, saying, Thou shalt not steal.' And if
any one breaks that commandment, or any
other one of God's, he must die, and be
punished for ever. If God don't punish him
here, he will hereafter. Do you know that a
thief is always a coward? He is always
afraid that somebody may have seen him.
This causes him to hang down his head, and
turn away his face;-his conscience accuses
him.
I remember something had been stolen by
a little girl one day in a school. The teacher
asked who had done it, but nobody owned.
He said, he would take a piece of a rope with
a slip knot on it, and put round the neck of
one, and then another, of the children, and
when it came round to the neck of the thief
it would choke her. There was a little girl
sitting on the second bench who kept her
eyes fixed on what the teacher was doing, and
did not seem to like at all the plan the teacher
had adopted. He, however, began, and put
it round the neck of one, and then another,
until it came to this little girl Just as the
rope was round her neck she looked very





36 EARLY DUTIES AND
much frightened, and as the teacher was
going to pull it, she raised her hands and put
them between the rope and her neck As it
got tighter and tighter, she cried out: 'Don't
hang me !-don't choke me-I stole it !'
Now it was not the rope that knew she was
a thief-it was her own conscience that told
the teacher so, by her putting her hands to
keep the rope from hurting her. The others
did not do so because they were not guilty.
But I don't intend to go round with a rope
in my sabbath-school, and find out any thief,
if there should be one present. I don't want
to beat him-I don't want to turn him out of
the Sunday-school, but I want him to re-
member the words of the Bible: 'Let him
that stole steal no more.'
Who was the first thief spoken of in the
Bible ? Was it not Eve?-and what did she
steal? Why only some fruit. And who did
the garden of Eden belong to ? Did not God
give it to Adam and Eve, and tell them they
might eat of the fruit which grew on the
trees? Did He give them all the trees No,
He kept one for himself. And which one
did Eve eat of? God's tree. Did Eve then
steal from God? Yes she did. Oh I how






EARLY DANGERS. 37
wicked; and because Eve was a thief and
stole, God punished her, and all of us who
are her children. So you see how God
hates stealing.
Now, there are three kinds of thieves:
First, those who steal from God; secondly,
those who steal from animals or birds; and,
thirdly, those who steal from man.
I. Those who steal from God.
We see that Eve did this. But is she the
only one that has done it ? Have any of you
little boys stolen from God? Have any of
you little girls ? I will relate you a parable.
There was once a good man, who was very
rich, and there were a great many poor men
who were dependent on him. He fed and
clothed them; he took care of them, and gave
them all they wanted. It happened one day
that he called several of them together, and
said, Here; I have only seven dollars: I will
give you six and only keep one myself.' Away
they went; but they had not gone far before
they began to talk together. One said to the
other, I wish we had seven instead of six.
We might just as well. 'Come,' said the
others, let us do this: as the old man goes
home let us rob him of the other.' They alL






38 EARLY DUTIES AND
agreed, laid wait for him, and seized all he
had. Were they not ungrateful, wicked men ?
Well, this is the meaning of the parable. The
good rich man is God. The persons dependent
on Him are you; the six dollars are the six
days in the week which God gives you, and
the seventh is the Sabbath which so many
boys and girls rob God of, and God sees you,
and will most certainly punish you.
II. Stealing from animals and birds.
But you will say, 'Has not God given us
all these ? Did He not make man king over
everything in the world ?' Yes, but only to
use them when he requires them ; not to hurt
them by bad treatment; not to kill them for
mere sport and pleasure. We may use, but
not abuse them. ,
I remember reading one day of a pretty
little bird that had built a nice little nest, and
while she was in search of some food her nest
was taken away. When she came back and
found it gone, she called out, saying,' Who
stole my nice nest, with four pretty eggs? '
Seeing a cow close by, she said, 'Did you 1'
'No,' replied the cow,' I would not do such a
thing. Did I not leave a wisp of hay on pur-
pose for you to build the nest with ?' 'Who,





EARLY DANGERS. 3V
then,' asked the little bird, 'stole my nest?'
and seeing a dog at some distance, she flew to
him, and said, 'Did you steal my nest?'
' No,' said he, 'I gave you some of my hair to
line the nest with. I would not be so mean
as to steal your little nest.' Who, then,
did ?' said the bird, flying to a sheep that was
feeding, 'Did you steal my nest I' 'No,'
said the sheep, I gave you wool to make it
warm. I would not treat a poor bird so.'
S'Oh, said the little bird, 'I should like to
know who stole my nest. Did you, Mary
Green ?' No,' said she,' I would not rob a
bird, I never thought of anything so mean.'
'I wonder who it was?' 'I can tell,' said a
little bird. Do you see that little boy? it
was he stole the nest. Oh, for shame, boy, to
take a nest away from a poor little bird that
cannot help itself.'
There were two little boys, Thomas and
William, going to school one day with their
dinner in a basket, and as they went over the
fields, they saw a bird fly out of some bushes.
' Look! .look!' cried Tom, 'did you see that
bird? There is a nest somewhere here; let
me find it.' So down they put their baskets,
and at last they found a nest with two young






40 EARLY DUTIES AND
birds in it. 'What shall we do with them ?'
said Tom,' they have no feathers, and are not
worth anything.' Let us kill them at once,'
replied William; and so saying he did kill
them without thought or pity.
But as they turned round to pick up their
basket, they found it had been upset, and was
empty. 'How did this happen ?' exclaimed
Tom. Our dinner is gone.' When looking
round again, he saw a dog with a piece of
meat in his mouth. There is the thief,' he
said, and picking up a stick was going to
strike the dog, when a gentleman stopped
him, and said, 'What are you going to strike
the dog for ?' He is a thief,' said William,
for he has stolen our dinner.' Stop, stop,'
said the gentleman, and be sure you don't
beat the dog, for what have you done your-
self? Whose nest is that ?' 'Why, William,
and I got it out of those bushes ; it is only a
bird's nest.' 'And who gave you leave to
take it ?' said the gentleman. 'Nobody,'
said William. 'Then you have taken what
did not belong to you, and are no better than
that dog. You robbed a poor bird, and the
dog robbed you. He has only taken your
dinner, but you have taken the bird's home,






EARLY DANGERS. 41
stolen all she had, and killed her little ones.'
At this the boys hung down their heads, and
were ashamed.
Now, can any of you, if you ever stole, or
are in the habit of stealing, punish a dog, or
any other animal, when it steals ? If so, you
condem yourself, and ought first to correct
the bad habit you have, and then you may
teach animals that know so much less than
you do.
III. Stealing from man, or from one
another.
Observe that stealing is taking anything
that does not belong to you, without the per-
mission of its owner. It does not matter
what it is; a pin or a thousand pounds. It
is a true saying, that he who steals a single
pin will be likely some day to steal a greater
thing. The effect of stealing, as I have told
you, is to make the thief miserable, and
ashamed of himself. It very often, if not al-
ways, gets punished in the world.
There was a boy, named James, who had a
very good and kind father, and his neighbour
had a son a little older, named John-a
sharp, active lad, one who was full of mischief
-so much so that James's father did not like






42 EARLY DUTIES AND
their playing together lest he should teach his
son any of his bad ways. It happened one
afternoon, as soon as dinner was over, John
came to ask James if he would come and take
a walk. James's father did not like it, but
they begged so hard that at last consent was
given, having been first advised not to put
themselves in the way of temptation, nor to
look upon it where it offered. Off they set,
but the road was dusty, and it was agreed to
take the field to get out of the dust. This
seemed very proper, and they both entered
together. At length John proposed that they
should go directly across to another road at
some little distance, which was also agreed to,
and away they went.
The first path led across the fields by the
farm and orchard of farmer Jones. In this
orchard were several cherry trees of the best
kind; and it being just cherry season, and
the boys warm, thirsty, and tired, they did
look beautiful and inviting. 'Jim,' cried
John, 'look at those cherries, did you ever see
such beauties!' And they really were beau-
tiful. They were perfect pictures of cherries.
John proposed that they should sit down and
eat; but James was afraid, remembering what






EARLY DANGERS. 43'
had been said about temptation. John de-
clared he should stop and rest. He threw
himself down upon the ground, and James
sat down beside him. 'Well,' said John, 'I
never did see such cherries in all my life;
only just look at them, James, and then look
at that fence. It is low; anybody might go
over it. Don't you think so 'Yes,' said
James, but who would think of doing such
a wicked thing I That would be stealing-
come along, John; you have. rested long
enough.' But John caught hold of James
coat, and prevented him from going, saying,
'Farmer Jones has gone to market, and there
is no one at home. Do you see that bough,
Jim? There, that one I mean. What a
stupid fellow you are! You are afraid to
look.'
At last James looked, and the sight was
too much for him. So up John sprang from
the ground, ran up to the fence, and James
followed. 'This is the lowest place,' cried
John; 'come here and get over.' Both were
in in a moment. The trees were tall, and
they had to climb.
But they had hardly commenced to eat,
when a dog began to bark from the other end






41 EARLY DUTIES AND
of the orchard. John was used to these
dangers, so down he hurried, and cleared the
fence. But poor James was frightened almost
to death. In his hurry he lost his hold, fell
to the ground, and broke his leg. In a
moment the large dog was upon him, and
held him down until his master arrived. In
vain did James call to John to come and help
him. A thief is a cruel, cowardly fellow, and
cares for nobody but himself It was so
with John. As long as he was- safe he did
not care what became of poor James, whom
he had led into the whole difficulty. For
many weeks poor James could not walk.
Breaking his leg broke him off ever being a
thief again,
There was a good minister in England who
said, that when he was a little boy, only seven
years old, his father went out one day and
left him to mind the shop. A man happened
to come by with little lambs for sale, made
of pieces of very pretty white wool As he
passed, he cried,' Little lambs for sale!-
Little lambs for sale !-all white and clean,
at a penny a piece. Who will buy my
lambs?'
'In a moment,' says he,' without thinking





EARLY DANGERS. 45
what I was about, I opened the drawer of my
father's till, took out a penny and bought one.
Just as I was coming in with it my mother
met me, and asked, Where did you get the
moneyfrom, my boy?' I said something which
led her to suppose that I had it given me. The
lamb was taken and placed upon the mantle-
piece, and every one thought it looked natural
and beautiful To me, however, it was the
cause of a great deal of pain. My mother's
words were constantly ringing in my ears,
' Where did you get the money from, my boy?'
and then the text, 'Thou shalt not steal'
When all the family came down in the even-
ing to sit round the fire, and the little lamb
stood right before me, I could not bear to
look at it. I turned to this side, and then
to that, and then began to think. But it
was of no use. That pretty little lamb seemed
turned into a fearful tormentor. I went out
and wept bitterly, and prayed that God would
pardon my sin. When I came back they
asked me what was the matter. I told them
how wicked I had been, and begged my
mother to forgive me for the lie,-I told them
of the robbery of the penny, and that as I
could not bear the sight of the lamb which had






46 EARLY DUTIES AND
been the cause of all, I wished they would
let me throw it into the fire and burn it.
They gave their consent accordingly, and the
lamb was burned.'
Such was the misery of this little boy,
and such were his feelings forstealing a
penny. You see that the only way by
which he could be made happy and con-
tented, was by first repenting of his sin-
then asking God to forgive him-his mother
to forgive him-and his father;-after which
he could not bear the sight of the object of
his unhappiness.
There was once living in the same neigh-
bourhood two little girls, who were bosom
friends, named Josephine and Sarah. Among
Josephine's beautiful playthings there was
nothing to equal the blue bag which Mrs
Gawtry gave her. At least so Sarah thought.
Oh that little blue velvet bag. Such a
beauty, and just such a one as she wanted.
She wished Mrs Gawtry would give her one.
She would have cared a great deal more about
it than Josephine. Sarah eyed it, and held
it up by the strings, danced it on her fingers,
and 'made believe' it was hers. After all, it
was Josephine's. 'Oh, dear !' sighed the





EARLY DANGERS. 47
little Sarah. Many days passed, and every
time Sarah went to Josephine's, she said wist-
fully, Oh, dear I'
One afternoon, as she was going up the
steps to call Josephine, to walk, what should
she spy dangling on the bush under the win-
dow but the blue bag. She darted her eyes
at every window : nobody was looking. She
seized the blue bag, and put it into her pocket.
Some one just then crossed the entry and
said Josephine was out, which Sarah was not
sorry to hear. She ran home with the prize
in her pocket. 'I only picked it up,' she
kept saying to herself. 'There is no harm
in that,-only picked it up.' Sarah then
went into a corner by herself, took it out,
held it up, put her handkerchief in it, hung
itfon her arm, and examined it to her heart's
content. It was such a beauty But when
she heard steps on the stairs, she snatched it
off her arm and hid it in her pocket. Her
mother came into the chamber, but dearly as
she loved her mother she dared not ask her
to delight in what had just given herself so
much pleasure. Oh no L and after a few kind
words from her mother she slunk away into
the garden. When night came she was at a





48 EARLY DUTIES AND
loss to know how to dispose of her bag. Her
mother might go to her pocket, so it was not
safe to have it there neither. Could she be
sure of nobody seeing it in the drawer or
closet? Somehow or other every spot seemed
naked and open to people's eyes.
At last she put it under her pillow, and
here it was just like a thorn; for she kept
waking up, and feeling for it all night. 'Oh
dear !' sighed she in the morning, not hasten-
ing, as usual, to her mother's room. 'Oh dear!'
she sighed, drooping her eyes when Josephine
entered the school-room, and feeling in her
bosom for the bag she had hid there. 'Oh
dear!' sighed she again, half afraid to play
during recess, lest it should drop out. It was
worse than all when Josephine came, and
putting her arm about her neck in her own
loving way, told her how the house had been
hunted for the bag, and how her mother had
reproached her with carelessness. 'If I could
only-only find it,' said Josephine, piteously.
At the close of the day Sarah could not smile.
There was a burden on her heart that grew
heavier and heavier; and she hardly knew
what to do.
Her mother saw something was the matter;





EARLY DANGERS. 49
but when she asked her what it was, the little
girl turned her back and said nothing; but
scalding tears trickled down her cheeks.
Every way she turned, and every way she
looked, a blue bag seemed to hang in the air.
After she went to bed and all was dark, if
she opened her eyes, there was the blue bag.
The worst of all was, Sarah had grief she
could not speak of. Hitherto all her little
sorrows and perplexities, as well as her joys,
were shared by her mother. Now the child
was trying to bear the burden alone.
'Oh, will not Jesus help me ?' she cried
aloud, as she tossed about in her bed. She
tried to pray, but there was no heart in her
prayer. Leaning on her arm, she raised
her head and listened to distant footsteps.
'Mother!' screamed the child, 'mother!'
Her mother heard her and ran to the call
'My child, what ails you, my child?' said
she, coming to the bedside, and taking both
of Sarah's hot hands in hers. 'Oh mother ?
I more than picked it up-I more than took
it-I stole it !' exclaimed she, thrusting her
hand between the pillows, and drawing forth
the little blue bag. 'Mother, it is Joseph-
ine's bag,-mother, will God ever forgive





50 EARLY DUTIES AND
me ? Can I ever be happy again ?' and the
child sobbed bitterly on her mother's shoulder.
What a sad and solemn hour was this! 'Yes,
mother, I knew better, but I kept saying, I
was only picking it up. But, mother, it was
more. I knew it was more, when I was
afraid to show it to you. I knew it was
more, when I could not tell you how I felt.
Mother, I am a thief-neither more nor less,
and Josephine may take me to jail. I would
just as lief go. Now I have told: I had
rather tell-and, mother, will god forgive
me?'
The mother looked very pale. She did not
try to comfort her little one. She only took
her to her side, and they knelt down together
to ask forgiveness of God, and pray that Jesus
would wash away her sins in His precious
blood. Early next morning the mother and
her child went to Josephine's house, Sarah
carrying the bag. 'Mother,' whispered the
little girl,' it is no matter what Josephine or
anybody else thinks of me, if I only confess
my sins and be forgiven. Is it not a great
deal better As the child spoke, the mother
thanked God in her heart for this sweet token
of an humbled and repentant spirit. 'Oh,'





EARLY DANGERS. 5
said Sarah, many times afterwards, and always
with a tear in her eye,' I am sure that is sin
which you are trying to hide from your
mother, and from God. You cannot smooth
it over by any other name.'
Such, my children, are the painful fea-
tures of sin, and such are some of the
punishments we receive here. You must
not forget that there is a day of most
solemn judgment coming, when you will see
the throne of God, and have to stand in His
presence, and answer for everything you have
ever done. God will bring every work into
judgment, with every secret thing, whether it
be good or whether it be evil. How must
the child feel that has been guilty of stealing?
If, then, you have ever sinned before God, go
to your Saviour, fall upon your knees before
Him-pray that He will pardon you-make
Him a promise that you will sin no more;
and if you are really sorry and repent, your
Saviour will forgive you, and heaven will be
your home for ever.





EARLY DUTIES AND


WHAT CHRIST CAME FOR..

As I was walking up the main street of
city, not long ago, hurrying home after the la-
bours of the day, as the evening shades began
to cast a gloom over everything, the watch-
men were hastening about for the purpose of
lighting the lamps before it was too dark; and
I thought I heard the cry of a little girl in one
of our narrow bye-streets. After listening a
few moments and satisfying myself I was not
mistaken, I turned out of my regular course,
and went to hunt for the object of distress
and sorrow. I soon found a little girl crying
very bitterly, and upon inquiring into the
cause of her grief, found she had lost her way,
nor was she able to give me any distinct ac-
count as to where she lived. Whilst I was
talking to her another person who had also
heard her cry followed me and recognized her.
He took her under his protection, and led her
to her home
This led me to think, as I walked home,
how sad a thing it was for a child to be lost.
And I remembered that we were all lost-for
the Bible says that we all, like sheep, have


52






EARLY DANGERS.


gone astray, every one following his own evil
way.'
I. Let me ask what is lost?
Our Saviour in one of his parables, tells us
of a woman who had ten pieces of silver, and
who lost one of them. Now what did she do ?
Did she sit down and cry? Did she say
" Well I don't much care about it, for I have
nine left?' No, but she went, got a candle,
and lit it-swept the house, and searched dili-
gently until she had found it. Then she called
friends and neighbours together, saying,
'Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece
of silver which I had lost.'
At another time He tells us of a shepherd
who had a hundred sheep, and one of them
went astray-left the fold and the kind shep-
herd's care, and wandered into the wilderness,
exposed to a thousand dangers without any
one to take care of and protect her. And
what did the shepherd do? Did he say I
don't care anything about my lost sheep-she
is not worth looking for ? She did not know
when she was well off, and I will let her go
and perish, as a punishment for leaving me.'
No, he loved all his sheep, and he could not
bear the thought of any one of them perish-


53






54 EARLY DUTIES AND
ing; so he left, in the wilderness, the ninety
and nine which had not gone astray, and
sought after the lost one until he had found
her. He then took her up and laid her on
his shoulders, rejoicing. When he came home
he called together his friends and his neigh-
bours, saying, 'Rejoice with me, for I have
found my sheep which was lost.'
But it is not silver and gold that Jesus
came to seek and to save-it is not sheep or
oxen. He has come to seek and to save the
old man and the old woman-the young man
and the young woman-the little boys and
the little girls; for all of you, and everybody
else living, and that ever has lived, have
strayed away from the kind Shepherd's care.
He came to save the lost.
When I go out into the streets, and hear
a little boy swear, I say,' Who are the lost ?
When I see a crowd assembled together, and
find two little boys fighting, I say,' Who are
the lost?' When I see little boys sliding or
skating on a Sunday, I say' Who are the lost.'
When I hear of little boys playing truant on
Sunday, instead of being at Sunday-school, I
say, 'Who are the lost ?' When I hear of little
boys and girls disobeying their parents at







EARLY DANGERS.


home and their kind teachers in Sunday-school,
I say, 'Who are the lost?' When I see them
going about the streets, from house to house,
and telling-oh such wicked stories! I say,
' Who are the lost ? When I hear of their
stealing from their parents or friends, masters
or mistresses, I say, Who are the lost ?'
Yes, all are lost by nature; and it is your
souls, your precious souls, that Jesus Christ
has come to save.
Some know when they are lost, and take all
possible means to save themselves.
It was a cold winter's night, the snow was
falling thick, and the wind was blowing it in
deep drifts. A little boy was travelling along
a road homeward, when he was overtaken by
the storm; and being tired, hungry, and cold,
he sank down upon the ground, and felt he
was lost. The snow blew over him, and almost
covered him. But what did he do? Why,
he called out as loud as he could, 'Lost, lost,
lost !'
There was a farm-house very near, but it
was so dark he had not seen it. In that house
was a kind father and his family. The fire
was blazing. There sat the good man, playing
and talking with the little ones. Suddenly


55






EARLY DUTIES AND


he stopped, and asked if any one besides him-
self heard a voice of distress. As they listened
they heard, 'Lost, lost, lost!' repeated. He
sprang up and told his boys to light the lan-
'tern, put on their hats and coats, and go out
with him to see what was the matter. They
went to the place whence the sound seemed
to come; and having moved away the snow,
they found the poor travelling boy, unable to
move: so they took him up, carried him to
their house, and took good care of him.
Now, if he had not felt himself lost, and
about to perish, he would most certainly have
died. He felt he could not help himself, so
he cried for other help. Just so with us;
we are unable to help ourselves; and when
we are willing to cry out "Lost, lost, lost !'
Jesus will come, like the kind farmer, and
save us.
In some parts of England, where they get
coal out of the mines, the whole country is
undermined; and there are a great many
holes or mouths, by which they let the work-
men down, some thirty, fifty, or one hundred
feet. These holes are very close together, so
that no one will venture to walk about among
them of a dark night without a light.


56






EARLY DANGERS.


One night there was a man who came
along that way, a stranger, and wandered
amongst the old worn-out coal-pits. He at
length felt unable to grope his way any longer
in the dark. He felt he was lost, stood still,
and cried as loud as he could, 'I am lost,
lost, lost At last one of the poor men who
work in the mines was awoke out of sleep by
the sound, and having got up, he went to the
spot with a lantern. There he found the lost
man standing on the very verge of a deep
precipice. Now, had that poor lost man,
instead of standing still and crying out as he
did, taken one step more he would have fallen
in, and most likely have been dashed to pieces.
And just as this man had left the right
road, so have we. We have departed from
God-we have forsaken the path of righteous-
ness and duty. We have wandered among
the pits and mazes Satan has dug to catch us
in, and we are all lost. Oh, how happy we
shall be if we cry to God, and He comes to
save us!
Good Mr John Newton, when a sailor, and
very wicked, said he had a remarkable dream
one night, as the vessel he belonged to lay in
the harbour of Venice.


57






EARLY DUTIES AND


'I thought it was night,' says he, 'and I
was on my watch upon deck, and that whilst
there, a person came to me and brought me a
ring with a charge to keep it carefully-tell-
ing me that as long as I kept it I should be
happy and successful; but if I lost or parted
with it, I must expect nothing but trouble
and misery. I accepted the present, and con-
sented to the terms, not doubting my power
to comply. I was engaged in these thoughts
when a second person came to me ; and, ob-
serving the ring on my finger, took occasion
to ask me some questions concerning it. I
readily told him its virtues, and he expressed
surprise at my weakness in expecting such
effects from a ring. I think he reasoned with
me for some time on the impossibility of the
thing, and at length urged me to throw it
away. At first I was shocked at such a pro-
posal, but he at length prevailed. I began to
reason and doubt, until I plucked it off my
finger and dropped it over the side of the
vessel into the water, which it had no sooner
touched than I saw a terrible fire burst out of
a range of mountains, that appeared at a dis-
tance behind the city of Venice. I saw the
hills as distinctly as if I was awake, and that


58







EARLY DANGERS. 59
they were all in flames. I perceived, too late,
my folly; and the being who had tempted me,
told me, with an air of insult, that all the
mercy God had had in reserve for me was
contained in that ring which I had so wilfully
thrown away. He told me I should go with
him to the burning mountains, and that all
the flames I saw were kindled on my account.
I trembled, and was in great agony, so that it
was wonderful I did not awake.
However, my dream continued; and when
I thought myself on the point of a constrained
departure, and stood self-condemned, without
a plea or hope, suddenly a third person, or
perhaps the same who brought me the ring
first, came to me, and asked the cause of my
grief. I told him all, confessing that I had
ruined myself wilfully, and deserved no pity.
He blamed my rashness, and asked me if I
would be wiser, supposing I had the ring again.
I could hardly, answer this, for I thought it
was gone for ever. I believe, indeed, I had
no time to answer, before I saw this unex-
pected friend go down into the water, just.
where I had dropped it, and return bringing
the ring with him. The moment he came on
board, the flames on the mountain ceased,






EARLY DUTIES AND


and the tempter left me. Then was the prey
taken from the hand of the mighty, and the
lawful captive delivered. My fears were at
an end; and with joy and gratitude I ap-
proached my deliverer to receive the ring
again.
But he refused to return it, and said, If
you should be intrusted with this ring again,
you would very soon bring yourself into the
same distress. You are not able to keep it;
but I will keep it for you, and when it is need-
ful will produce it on your behalf." Upon
this I awoke and found it was all a dream.'
Now, hadi each of you, dear children, a ring
put on your first finger that could make you
happy as long as you kept it, would you not
be foolish and wicked to throw it away? Sup-
posing you had such a ring, and, as you were
going home, some wicked boy or girl should
come to you and persuade you to throw it
away, would it not be very wrong to listen to
such an advice ?
Listen then, whilst I explain the dream, and
tell you about the ring. The first person who
came to him was God, and the ring was
eternal life which he gave him. The second
person was the devil, who came and tempted


60






EARLY DANGERS.


him to disobey God, and throw away the ring.
The fire out of the mountains was hell, where
he deserved to go; and the third person was
Jesus Christ, who went down, and rose again
with the gift of eternal life, which he keeps
for all His people, as they cannot bo trusted
with it. I trust you all see that the object
which brought Jesus Christ into the world
was to seek and to save the lost souls of men
and women, boys and girls.
II. Let me ask who is He that comes to
seek and to save"?
We are told that when David was a
shepherd, and employed by his father to keep
his sheep in the wilderness, both a lion and a
bear came out of the woods, and caught each
one a lamb out of his fold. As soon as he
missed them he went after them, and when
the lion and the bear turned on him to tear
him in pieces, he slew both.
But it is a greater danger than from the
lion that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, comes
to deliver us. He left heaven and God His
Father, and all the holy angels, to seek and
to save your souls and mine.
Supposing I were to start in a vessel to
some foreign country, and after our vessel


61





EARLY DUTIES AND


had got away from the shore, I was to see
another sailing after us, and she kept getting
nearer and nearer, until at last she took the
vessel I was in, and carried me off to a far
country-there they put irons on my hands
and feet, stripped off my clothes, and sold me
at market as a slave, and I should be bought
by a wicked and cruel master, who almost
starved me to death, and would whip me
until the blood ran down my back, and I was
to live thus so many years.
When at last the news was brought to my
native place; and the richest and best man-
one I had always treated unkindly, were to
hear of my condition and pity me; to make
up his mind to sell all he had, his house, his
land-everything-go into that country to
buy me out of slavery, and when he should
get there, and tell what he came for, my
master should say, 'But I will not sell my
slave,' although the rich man offered all he
had and became poor, that he might set me
free. Suppose my master still objected; but
at length the good man says, 'Well, if you
will set him free I will become a slave in his
place.' Suppose he were to accept this pro-
position, and take the irons off my hands and


62





EARLY DANGERS.


put them on the hands of my friend and
benefactor; and the chains off my feet and
put them on his, and flog him instead of me.
If I were to see him a slave-to know he had
left his home and friends in order to purchase
my pardon. Were I to forget that friend,
who thus became a slave for me, and were
never to speak of him, never to write to him,
never to thank him; never to love himself or
his friends, should I not be very ungrateful?
-would it not be wrong and sinful? and
have I not done this ? Was I not a slave to
the devil for years ? Did he not chain my
hands and my feet, and wound me in his
service ? Did not God pity me? leave
heaven, become poor, and wander about in
this world? Did he not consent to become
the slave in my place ?-to bear my sins,
which, like chains, bind me ? and to bear the
punishment I deserved? Ought I not to
love Him more than any one else ?
Or, supposing a little boy were to disobey
his father, run away from home, and bind him-
self to some wicked and cruel man, who
treated him shamefully, and make him work
like a slave, and suppose the news of his
trouble and sufferings were carried home to


63





EARLY DUTIES AND


his elder brother, who was so sorry for him
that he started on a long journey, encountered
many difficulties and hardships, and at last
arrived where he was, and proposed to buy
him. Suppose the master were to refuse, and
they were both to fight for him-both to die
in that fight-but he, the slave, was saved-
would it be right in him to forget that kind
and good brother?-never to think of him, or
tell of his love I
Now, my dear children, you have all dis-
obeyed your heavenly Father-left your home,
and bound yourselves to the devil; and he is
a cruel master. Jesus Christ is your elder
brother, who pities and loves you, and comes
seeking you, who for so long a time have been
lost. It is He who fights with the devil for
you on Mount Calvary; dies Himself, and
sheds His blood, in order that you may be
saved. Oh, what love is this! What a
precious Saviour He is! Have you ever
loved Him ? If not, begin to-day; if you
have, love Him still more. Think about Him,
read about Him, and give Him your heart,
your life, your soul, your all!


64






EARLY DANGERS.


THE SIN OF DISOBEDIENCE.
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his
mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young
eagles shall eat it.'
Now, that is what God says-that is what
the Bible says, and that is what the wisest
man that has ever lived says. Most of you
have seen a poor, miserable, wretched drunken
man, who goes about the streets of the city.
He is lame, and uses a stick, and whenever he
meets any little boys or girls, he makes a very
singular noise to frighten them, if he can.
The little girls run out of his way, for they
are really afraid of him ; the little boys do so
more for sport than anything else. Some-
times they have a good deal of fun with him,
as they call it.
Well, as I was going to say, the other day
I saw him stop a little boy in the street, and
raise his stick as if he were about to beat
him; but the little boy only laughed, and did
not seem at all alarmed. When I came up to
where he was, I found he was lecturing the
little boy on the duty of obedience to parents,
and telling him of all the threatening pro-
nounced against disobedient children in the
Bible. He repeated the fifth commandment,
'Honour your father and mother, that your
E


65






66 EARLY DUTIES ATD
days may be long inthe land which the Lord
thy God giveth thee,' and then went on to
explain it.
As I passed, I could not help pitying the
poor, drunken creature, and'thinking, 'you
are telling that little boy not to do what you
are now doing-for if it be wrong to disobey
an earthly parent, how much worse must it
be to disobey a heavenly Parent! Your
Father in heaven has forbidden your getting
drunk, and said that no drunkard shall enter
heaven. But you don't seem to care anything
about it. You know it is wrong, yet you
disobey God.' He makes himself like a beast
-he cannot think right-he cannot speak
decently-he cannot behave properly. Nor
can he walk like a sober man. An animal
will not get drunk, as he does, and yet God
gave him more sense than hundreds of animals.
God made man like himself, but man seems to
throw off his likeness, and assume that of the
devil. Instead of being good, he is bad;
instead of obeying, he disobeys; and instead
of honouring, he dishonours.
Can any one of you hear the text at the
beginning of this chapter read without trem-
bling at the thought of disobedience. The






EARLY DANGERS.


consequences of disobedience reach far-far
beyond the grave. They effect our interests
and our happiness after we are dead. Yes,
the child that tells a lie, or that is guilty of
only one act of disobedience, may by that one
act be hurried on to worse.
Only think how ungrateful it is! A
Christian-hearted boy would deny himself
almost any pleasure-he would encounter
almost any danger, and endure almost any
suffering, rather than disobey his parents,
who were so kind to him, and had done so
much to make him happy. How different he
is from one who will disobey his parents,
merely that he may play a few moments
longer !-or that he may avoid some trifling
work which he does not wish to do.
There is something noble and lovely in one
who feeis grateful for a parent's love. and who
tries to repay it by affection and obedience.
Supposingyou see a little boy walking with his
mother-the father is dead-he has been
killed in battle. She is weeping for her hus-
band-she is going to her lonely house.
She has no friend, but her dear little boy,
whom she loves most devotedly. All her
hopes are set on him, and her happiness de-



.*


67






EARLY DUTIES AND


pends on his obedience and affection. She
loves her boy so well, that she would die to
make him happy. She will work night and
day for his food and clothes. All she asks
and hopes is, that her dear little boy wll be
affectionate, obedient, and good. Now, how
ungrateful and cruel he would be if he should
forget and neglect his kind mother!
But see: he looks like a noble little boy.
He seems to say, 'Dear mother, do not cry,
If- ever I grow to be a man you shall not
want, if I can help it.' Who can help loving
the boy who loves his mother! :-
Now, you are not only to do what you are
bidden, but you must do it cheerfully, and
promptly. Supposing you are sitting at a
table, on a pleasant evening ;--the hour for
bed comes round. You are, perhaps, engaged
in reading some pretty story-book, and do
not feel sleepy. You ask to be allowed to sit
up a little longer. Your mother tells you
that the usual hour has come, and she wishes
you to be regular. You think it hard that
you cannot be indulged. With sullen looks
you shut your book, and taking your light, in
very bad humour, go to bed. This is not
obedience.


68






EARLY DANGERS.


As you retire to your room, God follows
you. Your sin of disobedience is, perhaps, so
great that you cannot pray before going to
sleep. It is difficult for any one to pray when
out of humour. You may say some words
over; but God will not accept them,' because
they do not come from the heart. As you lie
down upon your bed, and the darkness of
night gathers around you, God looks down
upon you as an ungrateful, disobedient, and
wicked child.
Dear young folks, you do not know how
much pleasure it gives your parents to see
you happy. They are willing to make almost
any sacrifice for your good; and they are
never wore delighted than when they see you
good, contented, obedient, and happy. When
they refuse you, it is not because they don't
wish to see you happy, but because they see
your happiness will be best promoted by re-
fusing your request. They have lived longer
in the world than you have, and know better
than you the dangers that surround you.
Now, I ask, is it obedience when your kind
mother is doing all in her power to make you
happy, for you to be cross, sulky, and obsti-
nate ? Is it honouring your father and your
0


69






EARLY DUTIES AND


mother for you to look offended and speak
unkindly, because they wish you to do what
they know to be for your good
Did you ever see a hen ? What a timid
creature 1 A little noise-the mere moving
of your hand, will frighten her away. But let
her have a brood of chickens, and she is no
longer timid and easily scared. She becomes
brave, and will protect her young at all risks.
If a hawk is seen flying overhead, she screams
to her little ones, and they all come flocking
under her wing. When that hawk pounces
down, does she fly away and leave the little
ones to fall a prey to their enemy ? No, she
fights for them-I will die rather than yield.
So it is with a mother. None of you can form
any idea how much your mother loves you.
A mother's love is the strongest feeling of the
heart.
Who was it, that, when you were a little
baby, unable to speak, unable to walk, and
unable to do anything but cry, used to rock
you in a cradle; sing you to sleep; carry
you in her arms, and let you lie on her own
bosom, but your kind mother ? Who was it
that, when you were sick, used to come and
sit by your bedside; ask you how you were ?


70






EARLY DANGERS.


mix all your medicines for you, and soothe
you by her kindness; brush the hair from
your feverish forehead, and stroke your pale
and emaciated face, but your kind mother ?
Who was it who, when you were in pain, used
to pity you; try to relieve you; rub the
tender place, and sometimes kiss it all away,
but your mother ?
Who was it that, when you were cross and
fretful, walked the floor, hour after hour,
carrying you in her arms until they seemed
ready to drop off, and till her lirhbs were
hardly able to support her I When the sun
shone bright, and everything invited her to go
out, and take a walk for pleasure and health,
who used to deny herself all this, in order that
she might be at home to take care of her little
one, but your mother
And shall she do all this out of love for
you, and you have no love for her, but treat
her as if you had a hard heart, and never
thought of the debt of gratitude you owe her?
If she has faults, you ought to bear with them,
for remember she bore twice as many of yours.
I really believe that if you would for a mo-
ment think of all she has done and suffered
for you, you would feel a pleasure in doing


71






EARLY DUTIES AND


anything she would ask. When you grow
up and have a house of your own, mind that
you give the warmest place at the fireside to
your mother, and the best of everything on
the table. Let her always have her own way;
deny yourself to make her comfortable and
happy. When God calls her away from you,
wet her grave with the tears of an obedient
and loving son.
If not, you do not deserve to have a mother;
and the ravens of the valley would serve you
right, if they would 'come and pick out your
eye, and the young eagles to eat it.'
Let me tell you what it is to honour and
obey.
There was a little boy named Carlos, who
made it a rule never to do what his conscience
forbid, but always to obey it, and leavq the
consequences to God. Carelessness was one
of his faults; and his kind, affectionate mother
tried to correct it. Like most children, he
did not view its consequences so seriously as
she tried to represent them. But being a
good boy, he resolved to try and do better,
if it were for no other purpose than to please
her.
When ten or twelve years old, she gave him


72





EARLY DANGERS.


sixpence to go and buy something for her.
As he ran out of the door she called after
him, saying, Carlos, you had better put that
money in your pocket, or you may lose it.
' Oh, no, mother, I won't,' said he, and away
he ran. There was some music in the street,
perhaps one of these hand-organs, and he was
led to stop a moment and listen. When
ready to go on again, he found he had been
thinking about something else, and, opening
his hand, had let the money drop.
In vain did he seek for it about the street.
What was he to do ? He knew his mother
would scold him, and he deserved to be
scolded. He put his hand to his pocket,
and found he had a sixpence of his own, which
his father had given him. His first thought
was to take his own, and buy what his mother
wanted, and say nothing about his carelessness.
He put his hand into his pocket to get it. He
remembered his rule, and what his mother had
so often told him.
As he thought of it he cried, and deter-
mined to return home, tell all about it, and
offer to put his own money in its place. He
did so. She consented that he should take
his own money, for she wanted to teach him


73






74< EARLY DUTIES AND
a lesson. At the same time, she reproved him
for his carelessness and disobedience, and
commended him for the open and honourable
manner in which he had acknowledged it all.
Now for a story about a little girl named
Agnes. 'I am very sorry to disappoint you,
my dear Agnes,' said her mother, as she came
into the room, where the little girl was at
work,-putting the last stitch in a dress
intended for a party that evening. 'I'm
sorry, since you have set your heart on going
to the party to-night, to be obliged to keep
you from it. But Charley seems so ill, that
he ought not to be left alone. He will
want much attention, and you know baby will
be in my arms all the time. I therefore don't
see any other way but for you to stop at
home, and help me.'
Agnes' countenance fell, and a tear came to
her eye. She brushed it away, however, and
said, 'Oh, well, mother, I should not feel
happy to go, if I thought you would need me,
or Charley would suffer; though I did wish
very much to go. Anna Clifford and her
brother have just come from the boarding-
school, and are to return soon; and I shall
have no other opportunity to see them. But





EARLY DANGERS.


no matter. Here, good-bye dress for the
present,'-and she cheerfully hung up her
dress in the closet, told her mother she would
come to her in a few moments, and ran up to
her room.
Here she did, what any young girl might
have done, she-sat down and cried bitterly.
There lay the pretty necklace she was to wear,
and her gloves, shoes, &c., were all laid out in
readiness. These she put back in their
places, wiped her eyes, washed away all traces of
tears, smoothed her hair, and then descended
to her mother.
Agnes' mother was in delicate health-the
baby was but six weeks old, and needed
care; Charles had the croup; and as Bridget
was only maid-of-all-work, and no nurse,
Agnes knew it was her duty to stay. When
she went into the room, looking smiling and
well pleased-not with pouting and sulks,
as some children would have done, and
said, 'Mother, what shall I do first for
you?' her mother could not help pressing her
to her bosom. 'My sweet daughter,' said
she, 'what a comfort you are to me I hope
you will be repaid for this sacrifice-I am
sure you will; for a promise of God is attached


75





EARLY DUTIES AND


to the honouring thy father and thy mother."'
Agnes busied herself in doing all that was
necessary, until they got Charley into bed.
Then, as he was disinclined to sleep, she sat
by him: Charley was about four years old.
After he had lain for a few moments, he said,
'Agnes, when I die will I go to heaven '
'Yes,' said Agnes, 'I hope so. If you love
the Saviour, you will.' 'Well I do,' said he;
' and it is said in my Bible-(you know you
read it for me) Suffer little children to come
unto me and forbid them not; for of such is
the kingdom of heaven." So I thought, if I
died, perhaps I would go into that kingdom,
where all the rest of the good children are.'
'Well,' said Agnes, 'I hope we shall, when
we die. But you do not feel very sick, do
you? You are not afraid to dieV' 'No,'
said Charley, 'I don't feel very sick, but I
think I shall die.'
Agnes did not like to hear him say this.
so, thinking he did not know the meaning of
what he was saying, she remarked, 'I think
I had better sing to you ? Don't you, CharleyI
'Oh yes, sing all the pretty hymns you know
and sing --
*" Shed not a tear, when you stand round my bier."'


76






EARLY DANGERS.


Agnes sung all she knew, hoping he would
sleep, but he continued very restless, and
asked her to 'sing that over.' She sung it
accordingly, and when she ended he stretched
out his little hands, and holding hers, said,
'Good Agnes ; Charley loves his kind sister.'
Agnes could not help thinking how fortunate
it was that she had stopped at home from the
party. Soon, Charley grew worse-so ill that
her mother sent for the doctor. He came,
prescribed .and went away. Charley still
grew worse and worse, and the next morning
he was dead. Oh how glad was Agnes to
think she had obeyed her mother, and staid
willingly with her little brother! As she
was sobbing over his dead body, what a com-
fort it was to hear her mother say, 'Don't
cry, my dear daughter,-you did all you could
for him. His last pleasant hours were with
you; and the remembrance of them is very
precious.'
-Oh yes, it was precious to Agnes, and when
she thought of what he had said to her, and
she to him-of the hymns which seemed to
comfort him-then of his last kiss; and that
he said he loved her-oh she was so glad she
staid at home-and staid cheerfully to,-for,


77






EARLY DUTIES AND


as she told Anna Rufferd, who came to see
her next day, ten hundred parties would never
have repaid her for the loss of it. She could
never have forgiven herself had she not staid
and been cheerful
Well, now, my dear children, was she, do
you think, repaid for complying so readily
with, her mother's wishes? Then go, all of
yu, and do likewise.
I have seen boys who thought it looked
brave to care nothing for the wishes of their
parents.
But there are some children who obey, yet
disobey.
Fanny's mother said to her one day, Go
up stairs, my daughter, and bring down a
dress of mine.' Fanny stood pouting about
it for a good while. At last, however, she
went, brought it, threw it at her mother's
feet, and said, 'There it is, but you might
have got it yourself.' She was one who
obeyed, yet disobeyed; she did what her
mother told her, but in doing it, she did not
honour her mother.
A little boy once brought in a dirty stone
out of the yard. His father told him to
throw it out again. He dared not disobey


78






EARLY DANGERS.


his father, and so he carried it out. Hi
dared not speak a cross or saucy word, but
when he had crossed the door where his
father could not.see him, he turned and gave
a very surly, saucy look. Did he not obey
his father ? and yet he disobeyed him, and
mocked him with his eye.
I know a little girl that has a very pleasant
home, and the kindest of parents, yet she is
often discontented and unhappy. She pouts
with her lips, throws her arms about and
sulks, stamps with her feet, and makes a
strange noise with her throat, something be-
tween a groan and a cry. It is not because
she has not enough of what is good to eat, or
because she has not time enough to play. She
is neither blind nor lame, but perfectly well.
She has everything to make her happy, but a
good heart.
What was it, I wonder, that made her fret-
ful ? She had a kind mother who told her
what she must do, and what she must not do;
but I will tell you what I heard, 'Caroline,
you must not take my scissors, my dear.'
'Why, mother, I have no scissors of my own
to cut off my threads with,' said she pettishly.
'Well, my dear, I will give you a pair, but.you


79








must not take mine.' 'I'm sure I don't see
why! It is only just to cut off my thread.'
The scissors were of the finest kind and
hly polished, and Caroline's mother knew
e would soil them, if she should handle
them with her moist hands; and that if she
got them once she would want them again.
Caroline's business was to obey cheerfully,
Whether she saw a reason or not. 'Caroline,
my dear, you must not climb on the chair to
reach your work. You must ask some one to
get it for you.' I'm sure I don't see.why; it
is less trouble to get it myself than to ask
somebody for it.' 'Very well, my child, you
Shall do it-take your own way, and see.'
SThat very afternoon Caroline mounted a chair
to get her work. She reached too far, and
over went the chair, and Caroline with it. Her
work was scattered over the floor-her needle-
book in one direction; the thimble in another
S -the spools of cotton in another; and what
was worse than all, her head struck the edge
of the door, and a large gash was cut in her
forehead.
'She cried sadly, and did not get over her
hurt for some weeks. Was it less trouble for
her to get it herself do you think? It is a




. .. ",-


80


EARLY DUTIES AND






EARLY DANGERS. 81
good rule through life, to do what God re-
quires us to do, whether we see why or not.
Let us now see what is the consequence
of disobedience.
The Bible says that the eye that mocketh
at his father and despiseth to obey his mother,
the ravens of the valley shall pluck it out,
and the young eagles shall eat it.'
Now, is not that frightful? There was
,once a little girl and she was not always very
good. Sometimes she would disobey her
/mother, though she knew that God had said,
Children, obey your parents.' Her father
was dead, and she lived with her mother. Her
old grandmother lived with them also; but
\ she was always sick, and lay in a room up
\stairs. One day her mother, who had been
out, came running into the house, and she
shut the door after her-bolted it, and said,
'Now, Mary, don't open the door, or go out.'
Just then the grandmother called out, and
Mary's mother went up stairs to see what she
wanted. After she was gone, there was a
great noise and bustle in the street. Mary
wanted very much to know what was the
matter; but her mother was not near to ask.
She ran to the window, but could see nothing






EARLY DUTIES AND


-so she thought she would just open the
door and peep out-but of course not to go
out, as her mother had forbidden her to do
that. She unbolted the door, and took a peep
-she saw a great many people running about,
but she could not make out what they were
doing-she thought she would go one step
towards the street, and see.
Was it not very wicked and ungrateful in
her not to try to please God, and her kind,
good mother? But shall I tell you what
happened? She stood for a minute looking
on, and saw the men in a great bustle, when
suddenly a great dog came running towards
her, caught hold of her arm with his teeth,
and bit her very severely. She then wished
she had obeyed her mother, who had seen the
dog before; and that was the reason she told
her neither to open the door nor go out. It
was a long time before the bite got well, and
I believe she was always afterwards very care-
ful not to neglect what her mother said to
her.
There was an English soldier named Price,
who was ordered off to India with his regi-
ment. He took his wife with him, and his
son Dick, who was a rebellious, disobedient


82






EARLY DANGERS.


boy. One day his mother took him to the
shoe-store, to buy him a pair of shoes. She
chose a pair that fitted him very nicely, and
the man promised to let her have them a
bargain. But Dick had made up his mind to
have a pair of boots. His mother assured
him that they were not as good-would not
last as long, and yet would cost more. 'Mo-
ther, I'11 have the boots, or go barefooted,'
said Dick. 'Oh,' said his mother, you are
the plague of your father and myself.'
Now, all this time Dick was putting on the
boots; and as soon as. he got them on, off he
ran laughing, and saying, 'Now, mother, you
may pay for them, or let it alone, just as you
like.' Not long after this there were several per-
sons running together, and looking very much
troubled as if something serious had happened.
So there had; for these people were bringing
home the dead body of poor wicked Dick.
He had on his feet those very boots, which
he had procured in such a wicked manner;
by making a jest of his mother.
This is how he came by his death. In the
morning he had asked his father for money to
buy some liquor. He refused him; upon
which-dreadful to tell, he struck his father I


83






84 EARLY DUTIES AND
The father being angry, gave him a very severe
thrashing. Dick ran away to the great mar-
ket, though his mother ran after him, and
entreated him to come back. Shortly after,
he was seen by one of the soldiers bartering
a gold breast-pin of his mother's for liquor.
The soldier reproved him for it, but he only
cursed his father for beating him. He got
the liquor, drank a great quantity of it; and
the heat of the sun caused his death.
When he lay dead on the road the ravens
were gathering on the trees, near by, ready
to come down upon the body. Because 'his
eye had mocked his father, and he had despised
to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley
were ready to pick out his eyes, and the young
eagles to eat them.'
Such is the miserable end of a wicked and
disobedient child. Honour, then, your father
and your mother, and your days will be long
in the land which God will give you.





EARLY DANGERS.


THE DUTY OF PRAYER.

Abraham, you remember, had two sons;
the oldest was called Ishmael, and his mother's
name was Hagar; the younger was called
Isaac, and his mother's name was Sarah.
They lived together for several years; when,
one day, Sarah saw Ishmael mocking Isaac,
-that is, teazing him and treating him very
improperly. It greatly provoked Sarah, so
that she went to her husband, Abraham, and
said,' Cast out this woman Hagar, and her
wicked son Ishmael, for her son shall not be
heir with my son, even with Isaac.' When
Abraham heard it he was very much dis-
tressed; for he loved Ishmael as his son.
Whilst he was thinking about what he ought
to do, God came to him in a vision, and said,
'Do what Sarah has asked; I will take care
of the lad, and make of him a great nation
for your sake.'
So Abraham awoke; rose up early in the
morning; and took some bread and a bottle
of water and gave it unto Hagar, putting it
on her shoulder, and sent her away with the
child; and they departed and wandered in


85






86 EARLY DUTIES AND
the wilderness of Beersheba. Now a wilder-
ness is a very large and barren place, where
there is hardly any water, very little grass,
and only a few trees: it is a place where
wild beasts live. There are no houses in a
wilderness, or roads or paths leading through
it; and very few people, unless in large com-
panies, ever travel through it.
After wandering about for some time, all
the water in the bottle Abraham had given
them was drunk, and little Ishmael became
very thirsty; so Hagar took and laid him
down under a clump of bushes that was near,
and went and sat herself down a good way
off, about as far as a bow can shoot an arrow,
for she said, 'Let me not see the death of the
child.'
But the Bible says, 'God heard the voice
of the lad.' Perhaps he was crying out with
the pain occasioned by his great thirst; or
perhaps it was because his mother had left
him alone, and he was too sick to follow; or
perhaps, and I hope it was so, he remembered
the God of Abraham his good father, whom
he had often heard of, and feeling that he was
forsaken of all on earth and must die, he
lifted up his voice in prayer, saying, 'Lord






EARLY DANGERS.


save, or I perish.' Whichever it was, God
heard his voice, and sent an angel out of
heaven to poor broken-hearted Hagar, as she
sat crying, and asked her, 'What aileth thee?
What is the matter?' Fear not, for God
hath heard the voice of the lad from the place
where he is,' under the bushes; arise, take
him up, for he shall not die, but live;' and as
I promised Abraham, 'I will make of him a
great nation.' Then God opened her eyes,
and she saw a well of water, to which she ran,
and filling the bottle, gave Ishmael to drink,
'And God was with the lad, and he grew
and lived on the borders of the wilderness,
and became an archer,' that is, lived by
hunting.
Now, I have told you this story, and chosen
this subject, because I want to speak to you
about prayer.
Why should we pray?
Every body does not pray. Perhaps your
parents never pray; or perhaps, what is worse
still, some of you never pray; and you are
ready to ask why should I pray ? If I am
ever left by my mother in the wilderness, and
feel myself dying of thirst, then I will do as
Ishmael did-but now I have no cause to


87






88 EARLY DUTIES AND
pray; I have all I want, I am happy and
well; why then should I pray ?
There was a little boy at play one morning
after breakfast, and his mother called to him,
saying, 'Come, George, to family prayer.' He
left his play directly, for he was a good and
obedient boy ; but as he followed her, he said
out loud to himself, 'I wonder why we have
prayers every morning '
His mother overheard what he said, and
when they were come into the room, she sat
down ard said: 'Come here, George;' and
taking him up in her lap, put her hand inside
of his jacket, so that she could feel his heart.
' Why this little heart,' she said, 'is now beat-
ing just as it was beating last night, and as it
has been beating for more than four years. I
wonder who kept this little heart beating all
last night? George did not stay awake to do
it; for when I looked at him before I went
to bed, he was sound asleep, and he did nob
awake till morning, and yet it has kept on
beating all night; if it had lost one single
beat, little George would have died, and we
should have had to put him in the cold ground,
as they did little Arthur Green a few days
ago.'






EARLY DANGERS.


'I know who keeps my heart beating,
mamma,' said little George, 'It is God,' 'Oh,
it is God is it ?' replied his mother; 'then
ought we not to kneel down for a few moments
and thank Him for keeping our hearts beating
all night, George ?' His little heart was too
full to answer. 'And then, while we are busy
with our work, and play, and studies, who is
to keep our hearts in motion, and the blood
running in our veins all day, George ?'
'God,' answered the little boy.
'Yes; none but God can do this,' said his
mother; should we not, then, ask Him to
take care of us through the day ?'
George hung down his head and answered,
'Yes, mamma.'
'Then there are a thousand blessings,' said
his mother, 'so common that we forget that
they are blessings ; such as the air we breathe,
the water we drink, the food we eat, and the
clothes we wear; all these come to us from
the hand of God; for, though we may think
we provide some of these things for ourselves,
yet without God, our blessings would not
continue a moment. The other day I passed
a house, but it was such a sad looking place
I did not suppose it possible that any one


89






90 EARLY DUTIES AND
could live there. The door was standing half
open, and the snow had drifted far into the
lower room; I raised my eye to the upper
part of this forlorn dwelling, and noticed a
window from which almost every pane of glass
was broken out, aAd their places supplied
with bundles of dirty rags and papers; there
were two panes left, and through these were
looking the faces of two little children; so I
crossed the street and went into the dwelling.
The stair-case was so old and broken that I
was almost afraid to trust myself upon it;
but I managed to climb up to the room, when,
pushing aside the board which served for a
door, I saw one of the saddest sights that ever
met my eyes. The room was even more
wretched than I had supposed possible before
I entered it. There was a stove, but there
was no fire in it; and there two little children,
a girl of seven and a little boy of five years
old, were shivering there alone; they had
been alone since morning, and thus they passed
almost every day. The little girl said their
mother went out to look for work; but I fear,
if the truth was told, she did not work much,
or the family would have been more comfort-
able. "Do you never have a fire here, my






EARLY DANGERS.


poor child?" I asked. 1" Oh yes, ma'am," she
answered, "but mother always puts it out
before she goes away; she says Willie and I
might burn ourselves." "Have you anything
to eat ?" I said. The little girl answered,
"Mother gave us each a crust before she
went away, ma'am, and she said she would
bring some bread when she came home to-
night ; but she stays so long." Oh how my
heart ached, George, for those poor little
suffering children. I took them some bread,
and did what I could to make them comfort-
able; but-t was little I could do as long as
they were in that wretched place. When I
left their house I looked up, and there were
the little faces again pressed up to the pane
of glass, and watching for the mother who
stayed away so long."
Now, George, why are you not suffering
and wretched, like those little children?'
George's heart was too full, and he could give
no answer.
SI will tell you why, George; because God
has made you to differ. God has placed you
in the midst of comforts; should we not then
thank Him for His great kindness in making
our lot so different from that of thousands?'


91






EARLY DUTIES AND


'Oh yes, dear mamma,' answered George.
'Nor should we, my son, forget the greatest
and best of God's gifts to us; I mean the
blessed Bible, and Jesus the Saviour of sin-
ners. There are millions of children in this
world who never heard of "the Bible," or the
"dear Saviour." Why were you not born a
little ignorant heathen child, instead of being
born in a Christian land, where you are
taught the way to heaven ?
'It would take me a long time, George, to
tell you of the many, many things we have to
be thankful for; then, there are so many
blessings to pray for, for ourselves and others;
besides, we have to ask God to forgive us our
many sins, for the sake of our Lord Jesus
Christ; oh there are reasons enough why
we should kneel, both together as a family,
and also by ourselves, morning and night, to
thank our Heavenly Father for His mcrcies,
and pray for those things which we need.'
'Oh, mamma, I am sure that I shall never
again think such a foolish thought as I did
this morning; I will now kneel down by your
side and ask God to bless me, and then we
will go to papa and all pray together.'
I am sure you will not ask me again why


92






EARLY DANGERS.


you should pray. If you only think what you
are, where you are, and how you are kept
alive, you will follow the example of little
George, and kneel down as soon as you go
home, and ask God to bless you.'
Does God hear and answer prayer ?
There was an old man who had become
deaf and almost blind, who was about to be
turned out of his little cottage. On account
of sickness, and some other little losses, he
was considerably behind hand with his rent,
and his landlord threatened to sell all his
things if the money was not paid by a certain
day.
Poor Allan Field (for that was his name)
could not see how he could obtain the money
for his rent in time; and he feared that in a
few days he and his daughter, and his little
grandchild, would be homeless. It was a sad
trial to him; but he endeavoured to cast all
his care upon God, and to be resigned to His
will. It was a hot summer's morning, and
Allan had vainly tried to fall upon some plan
that would relieve him, but to no purpose;
so down he knelt, and in an earnest manner
poured forth all his trouble before God. The
window of the cottage was open to admit the


93






EARLY DUTIES AND


fresh air, but Allan did not observe it, for he
was so deeply engaged in prayer-and the
cottage stood some distance from the road;
not likely, therefore, that any body should
pass by or be able to hear or see what was
going on within.
But yet, at that very moment, there was a
gentleman close by who was listening, with
the deepest attention, to the simple but
touching language of the old man. He was
a stranger, who had lost his way, and who
had come to ask direction. Ah! God sent
him, although he knew it not. The voice of
prayer had arrested his steps, and as he stood
to listen, holding his horse by the bridle, he
was deeply affected by what he heard.
He took some money out of his pocket,
wrapped it up in paper, and when the old
man had finished his prayer, knocked loudly
at the door. No one answered-Allan was
deaf, and his daughter was hanging out some
clothes at the bottom of the long garden.
But, after repeating his knock several times,
little Susan, the grand-daughter, came run-
ning to see who was there. In a modest and
pleasing manner she pointed out to the stran-
ger the road which he must take. The gen-


94






EARLY DANGERS.


tleman then asked her to give him a glass of
water to drink, and while she went to fetch
it he slipped the little packet of money into
old Allan's hat, which hung up in the passage
near the door; when he had drunk the water
and thanked little Susan, he went on his way.
In the cool of the evening, Allan told his
daughter that he would go and take a walk,
and call upon an old friend of his, to see if
he could help him out of his difficulties; for
Allan, while he trusted in God, did not
neglect the use of all the means in his power.
Susan put on her bonnet and shawl that she
might go with him, and then reached down
his hat. Only imagine, if you can, her asto-
nishment when the little packet dropped out;
it seemed like a dream. And imagine, too,
the surprise and gratitude of Allan when he
heard the wonderful news. 'It is the Lord's
doings,' he said, 'and it is marvellous in
our eyes. "Bless the Lord, 0 my soul, and
all that is within me bless His holy name."'
None could tell how the money had got
into the hat; they thought of the gentleman,
'but it was so unlikely,' they said, 'for a
perfect stranger to leave such a sum!' But
God works sometimes by the most unlikely


95






EARLY DUTIES AND


instruments; at all events it was an answer
to prayer. Old Allan paid his rent and had
a little over.
It was nearly two or three years afterwards
that the same gentleman paid him a visit,
and told them all about it; he did not do it
to be thanked, but to thank poor old Allan
for the good which he had received by listens
ing to his prayer.
The earnest faith and simple confidence
which Allan manifested on that occasion, made
him feel how little he knew of such com-
munion and friendship with an unseen
Saviour; and this one thought gave rise to
many others, until he became at length a new
creature in Christ Jesus. But perhaps you
are ready to say, 'God may hear a good old
manlike Allan Field, but will He hear a giddy,
thoughtless little boy or girl like me?'
Does not the text tell you that He heard the
voice of 'the lad?' And to prove that He
will hear your voice too, if you will cry to Him
in prayer, listen to this sweet story, and tell
me if you ever heard anything so beautiful or
touching; then 'go and do likewise.'
In a wild and lonely place quite away from
the bounds of my congregation, said a clergy-


96




University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs