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"None of us can say we have," I replied, "though He has loved us with a perfect love and gave Himself for us."
"Yes," said the boy, "and His blood cleanseth from all sin; He hath made our peace with God."
The effort of speaking exhausted him; but laying his hand on the Pilgrim's Progress, he seemed desirous that I should take the book.
"Do you wish me to read to you?" I asked.
"Yes," he said, "where they cross the river and reach the gate." I opened the book and read as he desired.
His eyes closed as if he were asleep; but he looked up with wonder and joy as I read that beautiful passage, beginning, "Now I saw in my dream that these two men went in at the gate; and lo! as they entered, they were transfigured, and they had raiment put on that shone like gold."
"I wished myself among them," said Joseph, repeating the closing words when I had finished. He lay still for a while as if thinking on the glories of that wonderous vision, when he asked me to read the fourteenth chapter of John. Taking up the Bible, I read the chapter.
Many mansions," he said, " many mansions, and Jesus is there, and all who loved Him.. When they were crossing the river, Hopeful saw the gate; I see it, and the angels waiting."
"Joseph," I said, "it is all peace, is it not?
"Yes," he feebly whispered, "yes; I'm going home."
These were his last words. The golden beams of the setting sun streamed through the window of the little room, and surrounded the dying boy with a glory too dazzling for us to behold, as, with a gentle sigh, he fell asleep in death.-From "Leaves from a Sunday School Teacher's Note Book," by Robert Frame.
ORIGIN OF HOLIDAYS FOR SCHOOLBOYS.
THERE lived a philosopher in ancient times who laid a solid foundation for the lasting thankfulness of schoolboys. He used to say that he would rather have a grain of wisdom than a cart full of gold,-and who, heathen as he was, had strong perceptions of the doctrine of the immortality of the soul. That man was Anaxagoras, not the princely gentleman of Argos, but the far-seeing, yet often wild and fanciful, philosopher of Clazomene. Just before his death at Lampsacus, three years subsequent to the commencement of the great and protracted struggle of the Athenians and Lacedæmonians for predominance in Greece, 428 B.C., Anaxagoras was asked if he had any particular wish, as it should be fulfilled if he would only give it expression. "Certainly I have," said the kind-hearted old man; "I wish to be remembered with pleasant feelings by all schoolboys, and I only ask that, in memory of me, they may always have a whole holiday on the anniAnd this was decreed accordingly; and this fine versary of my death." unselfish old fellow was not the mere recommender, but the founder of holidays for schoolboys, which holidays, in further commemoration of his name, were long known by the name of Anaxagoreia.
REWARD-GIVING IN SUNDAY SCHOOLS.
Mr. EDITOR,-I think that the checks of many a right-hearted Christian teacher must have been tinged with a blush of honest shame, when reading the letter of a Sunday School Secretary, of Cambridgeshire, in the February Magazine, on this subject. That such arguments and assertions should be presented to the great body of Sunday-school teachers, in the present day, by one of their own number, is to my mind, a very lamentable and humiliating fact. Whether the article is the real expression of the mind of the writer, I am at a loss to decide; but, supposing the latter to be the case, 1 beg to offer to my brother, and all others whom it may concern, a few observations in reply.
In the first paragraph, after quoting the admirable principle laid down by a Union Secretary in the January Magazine, p. 42, your correspondent observes, "that there are many children attending Sunday schools who are too young to imbibe this, and who would seldom, if ever, be in time for the opening services of the schools, if no rewards were given." Now, really this is too bad. Where did the worthy Secretary get his information from? On what fact does he ground his assertion, that these little ones would seldom, if ever, be in time, if no rewards were given? I must beg leave, in the name of the young ones, to deny this sweeping statement In the school, which it is my happiness to superintend, we have an unusually large proportion of very young children, but we have quite as many present at the opening service now, without any reward or inducement, as we had some years back, when we practised the ticket system, and I will engage to say also, quite as many as in schools generally where the system still prevails.
Passing by the illustration, which all hinges on "probably," "perhaps," and such like terms, (and indeed, the same may be said of the entire article, which from first to last, is based on opinion, unsustained by a single fact), we come to a startling sentence, "It is very difficult, indeed, almost impossible, to teach children to come to the Sunday school, because it is right, if you do not bestow rewards for so doing." Now, here again, in the name of the maligned little ones, I must enter my protest. It is neither "almost impossible," nor "very difficult," nor at all difficult, but the simplest thing imaginable, if the teachers will only heartily enter into it. Against these vague surmises I will place this fact, that our school, where rewards have not been given for years, is larger in proportion to the congregation, than any other school in the town. Your correspondent proceeds to argue that we are to begin by holding out some little inducement, and when they are old enough they may love to attend from better motives. I have heard of reasoning backwards, and this certainly is a fair specimen; begin wrong, and by and by they will set themselves right-begin by appealing to their lower, their selfish motives, and as they grow older they will acquire a taste for the higher and more spiritual motives. No Sir, begin right-teach them to love and serve God, as both their duty and their highest pleasure, and not for what they can get by it. Let our friend turn to p. 80 in the February magazine, and he will find this homely truth,
"To unlearn is harder than to learn, &c.," and every teacher can vouch for the correctness of the axiom; but according to his theory we are to sow to the ignoble, and expect to reap the noble-to sow to the flesh, and expect to reap the spirit. This is certainly contrary to the Scripture rule, that whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. There is, alas, in the present day, far too much of this commercial element in the churchso much service for so much return-and how can it be wondered at, when in the Sunday school-the very nursery of the church-we give the first lesson, taking the little ones, just as their minds are opening, and teaching them to do right, not for the pleasure there is in doing it, but for the sake of what they can get by it.
A step further on, after having got the child to attend school by means of this fictitious inducement, it is assumed, that "he MAY, sometime or other, be so struck by the prayer that is offered up to the throne of grace, by the superintendent or teacher opening school, as to cry out, what must I do to be saved?" And equally true, he may not, and so far as I can judge, the chances are, that the child will be thinking more about the tickets than the prayer; at any rate, I can speak again from experience, and say, that a large number of our own children are really, in the best sense, hopeful characters-and many of them are at this very time anxiously enquiring their way to Zion, with their faces thitherward.
The hope expressed in the closing sentence, "that where no such practice. exists, they may see ample reason to adopt rewards at once," is, I very much fear, thrown away. I have not the slighest idea that where once discontinued they will ever be renewed. No, Sir, "No man having tasted the old wine straightway desireth new, for he saith the old is better." Adopt them at once! What turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, after having been free from these trammels for years, after having taught our little ones to love God from pure and holy motives; after having witnessed a large amount of fruit from seed thus sown, shall we stoop again to the earthly, selfish, debasing element? No, verily, let us who are free, stand fast in our liberty, and take heed, lest we become again entangled with the yoke of bondage, and let us show to our brethren who doubt it, that children are susceptible of right impressions; can appreciate pure motives, and do come to our schools, and come early too, not for the loaves and fishes, but because they love to be there. I wish our friend from Cambrigeshire could pop in, and hear our little ones, as they sing with a gusto"For 'tis there we all agree,
All with happy hearts and free,
At the Sunday school.
Yours very truly,
A COUNTRY SUPERINTENDENT.
TALENT AND CHARACTER.
A TALENT is perfected in solitude; a character in the stream of the world.-GOETHE,
EFFECTS OF PARENTAL OPPOSITION.
A Sunday school girl, ten years old, was spoken of as going to her school in opposition to the wishes of her parents. She persisted till she was actually forbidden, and told that if she continued to go, she would be turned away from home. Her father said that he was going to be obeyed or he would turn her adrift, and let her find a home for herself. Both her parents, and all the family besides this little girl, were exceedingly regardless of religion. They attended no place of worship, and all were banded together against this little girl. So on this Sabbath morning all were sitting together after breakfast, when she went up stairs and prepared herself for the Sunday school. On coming down, she told her father she was going to the Sunday school, that she hoped he would not be offended, that it was God's holy day, and God had commanded to keep the Sabbath holy; that she could not keep it holy and stay at home, and do as they all did; but when she went to the Sunday school she felt sure she was doing right, and when she stayed away she felt sure she was doing wrong. So she had made up her mind to go, and bidding them all an affectionate and pleasant "good morning," she started for her school. The father went to the window and watched her on her way for some time. go after her." The mother said, "I think I will go too" So they both went to the Sunday school. There was a rule of the school that they would not receive visitors except on certain occasions. When these parents came to the door, they were told what the rule was, and they went on to state the reasons of their coming, and begged hard to be admitted, that they might see for themselves what the Sunday school was. They were admitted, attended to the exercises of the school, were well pleased, spoke kindly to their little daughter after school, and invited her to go home. She said, "Oh! no, not now, come into the church, let us hear the sermon, then we will go home." They went into the church, heard, were awakened, and went home in a state of deep anxiety. Their religious convictions deepened. They felt the need of pardon, sought and obtained it. That father, mother, and that little daughter, all stood together in a little time, to make a public profession of their faith in Christ.
At length he said "I think I will
PESTALOZZIAN PRINCIPLES AND THEIR CONSEQUENCES. THE actual substance of Pestalozzi's principles of education may be thus stated::
1. The basis of education is not to be constructed, but to be sought; it exists in the nature of man.
The nature of man contains an inborn and active instinct of development; is an organized nature; and man is an organized being.
3. True education will find that its chief hindrances are, passive obstructions in the way of development; its work is more negative than positive.
4. Its positive work consists in stimulation: the science of education is a theory of stimulation, or the right application of the best motives.
5. The development of man commences with natural perceptions through the senses; its highest attainment is, intellectually, the exercise of reason; practically, independence.
6. The means of independence and self-maintenance is, spontaneous activity.
7. Practical capacity depends much more upon the possession of intellectual and corporeal power, than upon the amount of knowledge. The chief aim of all education, (instruction included,) is therefore the development of these powers.
8. The religious character depends much less upon learning the Scriptures and the catechism, than upon the intercourse of the child with a God-fearing mother and an energetic father. Religious education, like all other, must begin with the birth of the child; and it is principally in the hands of the mother.
9. The chief departments for the development of power, are form, number and speech. The idea of elementary training is, the notion of laying, within the nature of the child, by means of domestic education (the influence of father, mother, brothers, and sisters,) the foundations of faith, love, of the powers of seeing, speaking, and reflecting, and by the use of all the means of education, according to the laws and methods of development included within nature itself.
The consequences follow of themselves. They are
1. The family circle is the best place for education; the mother's book the best school-book.
2. All instruction must be based upon training the intuitive faculty. The first instruction is altogether instruction in seeing; the first instruction on any subject must be the same, in order to obtain a fruitful, active and real comprehension of it. The opposite of this is the empty and vain mode of mere verbal instruction. First, the thing itself should be taught, and afterward, as far as possible, the form, the representation, and the name.
3. The first portion of instruction consists in naming things and causing the names to be repeated, in describing them and causing them to be described. After this, it should be the teacher's prime object to develope spontaneous activity, and for that purpose to use the forementioned progressive and inventive method of teaching.
4. Nothing should be learnt by rote without being understood; the practice of learning by rote should be confined to mere matters of form. In the method of oral communication with the scholars is to be found an adequate measure for estimating the clearness and activity of the scholar's power of seeing, and his knowledge.
5. The chief inducements to the right and the good are not fear and punishment, but kindness and love.