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HOV art here prefented with an A bridgment of fome Catechetical Exercifes, deliver'd in a Country Congregation; and therefore futed to the Capacity of the meanest Understanding. Some that have been either pieas'd with, or profited by them, would fain perfuade themfelves, that others might receive the fame Benefit and Satisfaction, if they were made more publick. This hath difpos'd the Author, who is unwilling to decline any thing for the Service of his Church and Country, to venture them abroad and try the Ex-\ periment: If they shall be found any wife ufeful, either to the informing the Judgment, or exciting the Affections, or helping any forward in their Chriftian Courfe, he has all that he aims at, and will reft abundantly fatisfy'd in the Success of his Adventure. And accordingly the First Part being found, in the Judgment of the World, useful and ferviceable to thofe Ends, I have gone for ward to all the other Parts of the Catechifm in the fame Method: And being now compleat, I humbly fubmit all to the Wisdom and Authority of my Superiors, and to the candid and favour
able Conftruction of all judicious and impartial Readers:
What doleful Evils have proceeded from the Lack of Catechifing, our prefent Age is an unhappy Inftance; in which many being bred up in the Times of the Civil War, and more in the Confufions that have thereby happen'd fince, have, thro' the fad neglect of this great Duty, been depriv'd of the Benefit of early and well-grounded Inftructions; and thereby loft thofe Principles of Religion and Virtue, which, if imbib'd fooner, might have continu'd longer with them, and made them more freddy in their Duty both to God and Man.
'Tis much to be fear'd, that the many difmal Evils that have enfied from this Neglect, are hardly to be cur'd in the prefent Age; which, for want of being well-principled in the beginning, is too much over-run with Atheism, and all manner of Impiety.
All our Hopes must be in the next Generation, by well-training up those that are to live to it that is, by laying a good Foundation in the Minds of Children and Youth, and feafoning their tender Tears with more lafting Principles of Religion and Virtue.
Long accuftom'd and habituated Sinners, like overgrown Oaks, are sturdy and inflexible: Whereas Children and Youth, like tender Twigs, are more pliable, may be bent any way, and are capable of any Impreffions. This fhould teach all Parents, as they tender the Welfare of their Children, above all things to take care of their timely and pious Education.
Mafters likewife, Tutors, Guardians, and all others that have the over fight of Youth, should build
upon this Foundation; using their best Endeavours to plant in them the Principles of Religion, and to for the Seeds of Virtue betimes in their Hearts, that they may the better grow up to the Service of God and their Country.
Moreover, all faithful Paftors are not only to regard their whole Flock, but more especially, to feed the Lambs, which Chrift, the Great Shep-. herd of the Sheep, hath made the greatest Mark of their Love, both to him and them: and therefore the Apoftle wills them, as to have strong Meats for well-grown Chriftians; so to provide Milk for Babes, even the fincere Milk of the Word, that they may grow thereby.
But above all, it should be the Care and W dom of Superiors, fo to fettle and regulate inferior Schools, that Children may not be poifon'd by bad Principles; an Error in the firft Education, as in the firft Concoction, being very difficult to be cur'd or remov❜d after.
In a word, nothing tends more to the Peace and Profperity of a Kingdom, than the well-training up the Members of it and inftilling good Princi ples betimes into those, upon whom the Welfare and Happiness of it must depends
This is the way to put a stop to the Overflowings of Ungodliness, and to prevent that Deluge of Ime piety that elfe muft unvoidably break in upon us.
In fhort, this may help to retrieve the Antient Piety and Simplicity of our Forefathers; and to mend that in the next Age, which is amifs in this: Which is the hearty Defire and Prayer of a
True Well-wisher to his Church and Country
HE Introduction, Shewing the Nature and Neceffity of
Catechizing in general; together with the Excellence
of the Church Catechism in particular.
Of the Benefit and Usefulness of Catechizing, from Prov. 22.
6. Train up a Child in the way that he fhould go, and
when he is old he will not depart from it.
In the first Question and Answer of the Catechism, two things
explain'd; First, the Occafion and Original of the Christian
Name, from Acts 11. 26. The Difciples were call'd
Of the Obligation of the Chriftian Name, from 2 Tim. 2. 19.
Let every one that nameth the Name of Chrift depart
In the fecond Question and Anfwer of the Catechism, three
things explain'd; First the Parties that give the Chriftian
Name: where, of the Reason and Use of God-fathers
and God-mothers, from Luke 1. 59. It came to pass on
the eighth day, they came to circumcife the Child, and
of the Duty of God-fathers and God-mothers, together with
that Office, from the fame Words.
Secondly, of the Time of Giving the Chriftian Name, which
was at Circumcifion under the Old Testament, and in our
Baptifm under the New, from the fame Words.
Thirdly, the three great Benefits and Privileges bestow'd on
God's part in our Baptifm; wherein, first, we are made
Of the fecond great Privilege of Baptifm, wherein we are
made the Children of God, from Rom. 8. 14. As many as
are led by the Spirit of God, they are the Sons of God.
And Verfe the 16th, The Spirit witneffeth with our
Spirit, that we are the Children of God.
Of the third great Privilege of Baptifm, wherein we are
made Heirs, or Inheritors of the Kingdom of Heaven,
from Rom. 8. 17. If Children, then Heirs; Heirs of God,
In the third Question and Answer of the Catechism are ex-
plain'd the three great Duties or Conditions requir'd and
promis'd on our part, to entitle us to the three foremen-
tion'd Privileges: The first whereof is, the renouncing the
three great Enemies of Chrift and our own Salvation, the
Devil, the World, and the Flefb. Renouncing the Power
and Temptations of the Devil, explain'd from Fam. 4. 7.
Refift the Devil, and he will flee from you.
Of renouncing the Works of the Devil, from 1 John 3.8.
For this purpofe was the Son of God manifefted, to de-
Of renouncing the fecond ghoftly Enemy, the Pomps and Va-
nities of this wicked World, from 1 John 2. 15. Love not
the World, nor the Things of the World; if any Man love
the World, the Love of the Father is not in him. 85
Of renouncing the third ghoftly Enemy, viz. all the finful
Lufts of the Flefb, from 1 Pet. 2. 11. Dearly beloved, I
befeech you, as Strangers and Pilgrims, abftain from
flefhly Luits, which war against the Soul.
Of the second great Duty and Condition requir'd and promis'd
in our Baptifm, viz. to believe all the Articles of the
Christian Faith, from Mark 1. 15. Repent, and believe