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AN EVANGELICAL UNION CATECHISM.
[This Biblical Union Catechism (slightly revised by the author for this work) has no ecclesiastical sanction or authority whatever, and is only added as an attempt to express, in a popular catechetical form, the doctrinal consensus of the Evangelical Churches. It was originally prepared in 1862, with brief explanatory notes, as a labor of love for the author's family, but found its way into a number of Sunday-schools, and was made the basis of similar works. A German edition was published by the American Tract Society, New York, 1863, and another, with additions and explanations by Prof. Dr. Pfleiderer, Stuttgart, 1874.]
A CHRISTIAN CATECHISM:
IN FIFTY-TWO LESSONS FOR SUNDAY-SCHOOLS AND FAMILIES.
I. THE END OF MAN.
1. Who made you?
Gen. i. 27; Psa. c. 3; Job xxxiii. 4; John i. 3.
2. Who redeemed you?
1 Pet. i. 18, 19; 1 Cor. vi. 20; Tit. ii. 14.
3. Who sanctifies you? The Holy Spirit.
1 Cor. vi. 11; 1 Pet. i. 2; Heb. x. 22.
4. For what end were you created?
Rom. xi. 36; xiv. 8; 1 Cor. x. 31.
5. What, then, should be your chief concern in this life? To do the will of God, and to save my soul.
Matt. vi. 33; xvi. 26; Phil. ii. 12, 13.
II. THE WAY OF SALVATION.
1. Is it the will of God that you should be saved? Yes.
2. Why so?
Because God is love, and will have all men to be saved. 1 John iv. 8; Ezek. xxxiii. 11; 2 Pet. iii. 9; 1 Tim. ii. 4.
3. How has God revealed his love to you?
By giving his only-begotten Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
John iii. 16; 1 Tim. i. 15; Rom. v. 8.
4. Can you be saved by your own strength?
No; but only by the grace of God in Christ.
Acts iv. 12; Eph. ii. 8, 9; Rom. iii. 23, 24.
5. What must you do to be saved?
I must believe in Jesus Christ, and follow him.
6. Where is the way of salvation pointed out to us?
In the Holy Scriptures.
2 Tim. iii. 15; John v. 39.
III. THE HOLY SCRIPTURES.
1. Where has God revealed himself?
In the works of creation, in the conscience of man, and in the history of the world.
Psa. xix. 2; Rom. i. 19, 20; ii. 14, 15.
2. Where has God most clearly and fully revealed himself?
In his infallible Word, and in the Person of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Psa. cxix. 105; 2 Pet. i. 19; Heb. i. 1, 2.
3. Where is the Word of God contained?
In the Bible, or the Holy Scriptures.
4. What does the word 'Bible' mean?
The Book of books; or, the best of all books.
5. Who wrote the Bible?
Prophets and Apostles, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
2 Pet. i. 21; Heb. i. 1, 2; 2 Tim. iii. 16.
6. What are the contents of the Bible?
The revelation of God in the works of creation, redemption, and sanctification.
7. What is the aim and value of the Bible?
It shows us the way of salvation, and is the infallible rule of the Christian faith and life.
2 Tim. iii. 16, 17; Heb. iv. 12.
8. Who enables you to understand the Bible?
The same Holy Spirit that inspired the Bible, and is given to believers.
John xvi. 13; 1 Cor. ii. 14; Luke xi. 13.
9. What use should you make of the Bible?
We should diligently and devoutly hear and read the Bible, as the book of God, and conform to its teaching.
Luke xi. 28; John xiii. 17; James i. 22.
IV. THE OLD AND THE NEW TESTAMENT.
1. What are the two parts of the Bible? The Old and the New Testament.
2. What does the word Testament mean?
The covenant which God made with man.
3. What covenants did God make with man?
First the covenant of the law through his servant Moses, and then the covenant of the gospel through his Son Jesus Christ.
4. What does the Old Testament contain?
The law and the promise.
5. What does the New Testament contain?
6. How, then, are both Testaments related to each other?
The Old Testament is the preparation for the New, and the New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old.
Matt. v. 17; John i. 17; Rom. x. 4.
7. In what languages was the Bible originally written?
The Old Testament was written in Hebrew, the New Testament in Greek; but both are translated into the various languages of the world.
8. What is the sum and substance of both Testaments?
John i. 45; v. 39; Luke xxiv. 44.
V. THE OLD TESTAMENT.
1. How many books does the Old Testament contain? Thirty-nine.
2. How are they divided?
Into historical, poetical, and prophetical books.
3. Name the historical books.
First, the five books of Moses, severally called Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
4. Name the other historical books.
Joshua, Judges, Ruth, First and Second Samuel, First and Second Kings, First and Second Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther.
5. Which are the poetical books?
Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes or the Preacher, and the Song of Solomon.
6. Which are the prophetical books?
The writings of the four greater and the twelve minor prophets.
7. Name the greater prophets.
Isaiah, Jeremiah (with the Lamentations), Ezekiel, and Daniel.
8. Name the minor prophets.
Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.
9. What are all these books called?
The canonical books of the Old Testament.
10. Why so?
Because they are divinely inspired, and, together with the New Testament, constitute the rule of faith.
VI. THE NEW TESTAMENT.
1. How many books does the New Testament contain?
2. How is the New Testament divided?
Into historical, doctrinal, and prophetical books.
3. Which are the historical books of the New Testament?
The four Gospels and the Acts.
4. Who wrote the Gospels?
The Evangelists-Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
5. What does the word gospel mean?
The glad tidings of salvation by Christ.
Luke ii. 10, 11; Mark xvi. 15; Rom. i. 16.
6. What do the Gospels treat of?
The life and doctrine, the death and resurrection of our Saviour.
7. Who is the author of the Acts of the Apostles?
Luke the Evangelist.
8. What do the Acts contain?
The history of the founding and spread of Christianity under the Apostles, especially Peter and Paul.
9. Which are the doctrinal or didactic books?
Fourteen epistles of Paul, and seven catholic or general epistles.
10. Name the Epistles of Paul.
Romans, First and Second Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, First and Second Thessalonians, First and Second Timothy, Titus, Philemon, and Hebrews.
[The Epistle to the Hebrews is anonymous and of uncertain authorship, but inspired and canonical, and belongs to the school of Paul.]