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object to which their attention was turned, and appeared uncommonly solemn.
On Wednesday evening the classes were formed, agree. able to previous arrangement, when upwards of 450 : youths were associated to search the wuriptures. It is confidently expected that hundreds of others will soon be added. We do believe these are tokens for great good in Salem. We trust that a blessing from on high may descend on their youth, similar to what has recently descended on a Bible Class in the Rev. Mr. Gay's
congregation in Bridgwater. Respecting both of these places we hope to give, from the Pastors themselves, more full accounts at some future time.
Iř'our Prospectus we proposed 'occasionally to address pa
rents. Providence, and the consent of friends, have favoured us with an able manuscript sermon on Parental Fidelity, by the late deeply lamented SAMUEL WORCESTER, D. 1). Secretary of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. The body of the Discourse is a lucid discussion of important points of Christian duty. But feeling that parents generally need less teaching than persuasion on this subject, we have concluded to insert in this Number, only the two last divisions and the application of the sermon. The text is Jehovah's command to parents to train
up their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
The proper exercise of parental authority is another important mean of bringing up children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
As children naturally partake of the depraved nature of our depraved race, it is to be expected that, unless great care be used, they will wander away into the paths of the destroyer, and become accustomed to the courses of impiety and dissipation. It is even to be expected that they will be impatient ander the restraints of a religious education, and manifest inclinations exceedingly trying to the feelings of their pious parents. Their untoward inclinations are not to be indulged, but to be checked and restrained. They are to be admonished, entreated, and corrected with all possible faithfulness, tenderness, .
and perseveranee. It is the indispensable duty of parents to guard their children, as far as possible from ile baneful influence of vicious company; to interpose their parental authoritv, when necessary, to prevent their frequenting seets of dissipation and vice; to amend their irregularities of conduct; and to bring them to an habitual observance of the laws of morality, and the institutions of our holy religion. It is incumbent on parents to educate their children not only in the nurture, but in the admonition of the Lord : or as Abraham did, to command their children anil their households after them to keep
the way of the Lord, and to do justice and judgment. This is doubtless a very difficult duty, and parents and heads of families need much wisdon and grace. While they are to command their children and Their households after them to keep the way of the Lord; they are not to provoke them to wrath. They are carefully to avoid all unreasonable severity and harshness of treatsient; and 50 to temper their authority, with kindness, and parental affection, as to convince their children that in all the restraints imposed upon them, they have constantly and deeply at heart, their highest good. They should aim and endeavour, as far as possi. ble, to „secure the affections of their children, so that they may delight in conforming to their requirements.
V. Effectual fervent prayer, is another important part of the means which God has instituted, for the religious education of children.
In the privilege of access to the throne of grace the Christian parent enjoys a peculiar favour. There he may obtain mercy and find grace proportioned to his duty and to all the difficulties of instructing his children in the fear of the Lord. Of the fulness of Christ he may
receive abundant fulness of wisdom, grace and strength; and in answer to his fervent and persevering prayer
his children may also partake of the same ful.. ness. Having solemnly dedicated his children to God in the way of divine appointment, and faithfully instructed them out of the divine word, he may be greatly encouraged and animated in prayer by a believing view of God's gracious promise to be a God to him and to his seed after him; and taking hold of the promise may humbly and importunately plead for the bestowment of his blessing on himself, and on his children.
But it is time tl:at I hasten to an improvement of what has been said...Aud
1. It appears from what has been offered, that true and eminent piety is of immense importance to parents and heads of families. In all the relations of life we need much of the
of God in order to a fulfilment of the various duties of our relations ; but scarcely in any relation do we need more of divine
grace than in that of parents and heads of families. To have children committed to our care, to have inmortal souls entrusted to our charge to be brought up for God and for everlasting glory in his kingdom, is certainly a situation of high responsibility, the duties of which cannot be fulfilled without great wisdom, diligence and piety. Surely, my brethren, to discharge our duty to our children with fidelity, we must bave a lively faith in the gracious promises of the covenant, that in giving them up to God in baptism, we may make an entire surrender of them; and that ever afterwards in our prayers for them, and in all our counsels and instructions, we may be sincere and faithful, and have an unwavering reliance on him for a blessing. The faith which is necessary in respect to our children, is not a vain confidence that the Lord will renew and save them, whether we be faithful or not; but is such a realizing view of his promise and faithfulness, as will lead us constantly to look to him, and humbly to depend upon him for all requisite grace.
It is a faith which does honour to God, and gives all the glory of our salvation and the salvation of our children. to the riches of his mercy, wbich, in his holy sovereignty he has been pleased to reveal in his graeious coveount.-In proportion to our faith and piety we shall be concerned for the salvation of our children, and shall be unceasing and abundant in our prayers, our instructions, and admonitions, that they may be brought to renounee the vanities of the world, and set their hope in God. But, my brethren, if we be not religious ourselves, bow can we discharge our duty to our children? If we do not walk in our houses with a perfect heart; how can we command our children and our households after us to keep the way of the Lord ? If we do not live habitually in the fear of God, if we do not live as the grace of God which bringeth salvation
opde ble at
teaeheth, in the denial of ungodliness, and worldly lústs, soberly, righteously and devoutly in the world; how can we expect to train-up our children in the way they should go, so that when ihey are old they will not de part. therefroin? O let us feel how important it is that we be not only true believers in Christ, but that we grow in: grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour,, and be ever righteous before God, walking in all his statutes and ordinances blameless.
2. It appears to be an important duty incumbent on a Chureh of Christ, faithfully to watch over its members in respect to their duty to their children. Children that have been regularly given up to God in baptism have an important relation to the Church, and are to be so far under the watch and care of the Church, as not to fail of enjoying a religions education. If the children of the Churelt, do nos enjny religious privileges, it is the duty of the Church to rectify the error and to remove the evil. In other words, if parents in covenant be neglectful of their duty to their children, it is incumbent on their brethren in a faithful and christian manner to tell them their faults, and endeavour to bring them to repentance and to a performance of their duty.
3. It behooves us my brethren, to make solemp in. quiry with ourselves in regard to the great duty inculcated in this discourse.
Have we religiously given our children to God un. der the seal of his everlasting covenant ? If indeed we have presented them at the baptismal font, have we done it in faith, sincerely giving them to God, and seeking his blessing, even life evermore ? Have we since sacredly regarded them as set apart for God, and made it our care to bring them up for hins, in the way which he has prescribed ? As they have become capable of receiving instruction, have we been faithful to instruct them in the things of religion, with diligence and perseverance, answerable in any measure to the worth of their souls, the importance of their salvation, or the soJemnity of our vows respecting them ? Have we prayed with them and for them, bearing them on our hearts constantly before God, and with deep concern for their eternal welfare, pleading in iheir behalf his covenant merey, and imploring his grace to assist us in all our du
ty towards them ? Have we made it our care to shield them from temptation, to restrain them from vice, and to command them after us to keep the way of the Lord ? Ah ! my brethren, why is it that we see our children so little aitentive in general to their religious concerns ? Why is it that they have so little knowledge of di. vine things, and are so little affected with them ? Wliy is it that so few of them appear to be subjects of divine grace and present partakers of Covenant blessings Why is it in a word, that we do not see them under the influences of the Spirit poured out from op high springing up as willows by the water courses, subscribing with their own hands to the Lord, and sur. naming themselves by the name of Israel? Is God unmindful of his covenant ? Has he forgotten to be gracious ? Is be slack concerning his promise? No my brethren, 6 the Lord's arm is not shortened tbat he cannot save, neither is his ear heavy that it cannot hear; bat our iniquities have separated between us and our God, and our sins have hid his face from us.” Look. ing round upon our solemn assemblies, looking round upon our children, looking round upon one another, and above all looking home upon ourselves tan we avoid the conviction, strong and painful, that we have greatly vegleeted our duty? Does it not then behoove us to humble ourselves before God, and resolve that wherein we have been negligent and unfaithful we will be so no more? Does it not behoove us to ex. hort one another daily while it is called to-day, on this interesting subject, and to provoke one another to love and to good works ? Does it not behoove us unit. edly and fervently to call upon God, imploring his par. doning merey, and earnestly beseeching him uot to visit our iniquities upon our children; but according to his abundant grace
out his Spirit upon our seed, and his blessing upon our offspring and to give us one heart and one way, that we may fear him overmore, for the good of ourselves and of our children after us. The Lord is very merciful and will not turn away his ear from them that diligently seek him.
Let us then my brethren one and all, bring this subject home to our hearts, and meditate upon it in all its interest and weight. Does God graciously propose to be a God