Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Lord's Prayer

Our Father, Who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom, 
the Power and the Glory, Forever and ever, 
Amen.

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Methodist Intermediate Catechism


The Methodist
Intermediate Catechism

Issued by direction of
the General Conference 
of the Methodist 
Church of Australasia

COPYRIGHT

Published by the Methodist Young 
People's Departments of New South 
Wales, Victoria and Tasmania, South 
Australia, Queensland and Western 
Australia.

xxxTH EDITION

Obtainable at the Book Depots

Price - One Penny Half-penny net.



THE APOSTLES' CREED

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.  I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy Catholic Church; the Communion of Saints; the Forgiveness of sins; the Resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.  Amen.


The Methodist
INTERMEDIATE CATECHISM

FOREWORD

This Catechism has been been compiled for Sunday School scholars and others, from eleven to thirteen years of age.  Parents and teachers should give instruction necessary for an intelligent use of the Catechism, and the questions and answers should be memorised by the young people.

The Scripture portions are included in the memory work, and should be memorised after each section has been studied.  It is hoped that by the use of complete chapters or sections of the Scriptures better results will be obtained than the older "proof-text" method.  The Revision Version is used.

The Catechism is issued by Direction of the General Conference of the Methodist Church of Australasia, and is published by the Young People's Departments of New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania, South Australia, Queensland and Western Australia.

CONTENTS

Section 1 - God, Our Heavenly Father .. Page 2
Section 2 - Sin and Salvation .. .. .. .. 5
Section 3 - The Commandments .. .. .. .. 9
Section 4 - The Christian Religion .. .. 14
Section 5 - The Word of God .. .. .. .. 17
Section 6 - Prayer .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 20
Section 7 - The Christian Church .. .. 24
Section 8 - The Sacraments .. .. .. .. 28
Section 9 - The Lord's Day .. .. .. .. 31
Section 10 - The Church and the State .. 34
Section 11 - The Life Everlasting .. .. .. 37


SECTION 1. - GOD, OUR HEAVENLY FATHER.

1. How were the heavens and the earth created?
  They were created by the will and power of God, Who, in the beginning, laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the work of His hands.

2. Whence do we get our knowledge of God?
  We learn of God from His works in nature, from the voice of conscience within us, but especially from the Holy Scriptures.

3. What do we learn of God from His works in nature?
  We learn of His glory, His wisdom, His power and His goodness; for the heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament sheweth His handiwork; the earth also is full of His goodness.

4. What do we learn of God from the voice of our conscience?
  Our conscience approves when we do right, and condemns when we do wrong; thus we learn that God loves right and hates wrong.

5. What do we learn of God from the Holy Scriptures?
  From the Holy Scriptures we learn that God is spirit, light, and love, but the best thing we learn from them is that He is our Heavenly Father.

6. How then ought we to think of God?
  We ought to think that God is Love, the one ever-living, personal Spirit, maker of all things, on Whom all things depend; righteous in all His ways, and gracious in all His works - Our Heavenly Father.

7. Who taught us to call God our Heavenly Father?
  The Lord Jesus Christ, who Himself called God "My Father," and spoke of Him to His disciples as "your Heavenly Father."

8. Who is the Lord Jesus Christ?
  The Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God, Who, leaving His heavenly glory, became man, and dwelt among us.

9. What do we learn from the name "Heavenly Father"?
  We learn from it that God made us in His own image, that He cares for us by His wise providence, and that He loves us perfectly.

10. What do we mean by saying that God is the One Ever-living Personal Spirit?
  We mean that He alone has always lived, and always will live, that He knows all things, and works everywhere, although we cannot see Him.

11. What do we mean by saying that God is righteous in all His ways, and gracious in all His works?
  We mean that God never does wrong, and that He is always working in love for the good of all His creatures.

12. How does God show His love for us?
  God shows His love for us by the abundant mercies which He bestows on us every day.

13. How has God shown the exceeding greatness of His love?
  By giving His Own Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, to save us from sin.

Psalm 8
O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Thy name in all the earth! Who hast set Thy glory upon the heavens.  Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings hast Thou established strength, because of Thine adversaries, that Thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.  When I consider Thy heavens, and the work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which Thou hast ordained; what is man that Thou art mindful of him?  And the son of man, that Thou visitest him?  For Thou hast made him but little lower than God, and crownest him with glory and honour.  Thou madest him to have dominion over all the works of Thy hands; Thou has put all things under his feet: All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beats of the field; the fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas.  O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Thy name in all the earth!

John 3:14-17
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth may in Him have eternal life.  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have eternal life.  For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through Him.

Philippians 2:5-11
Have this in mind, which was also in Christ Jesus; Who, being in the form of God, counted it not a prize to be on an equality with God, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men; and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, becoming obedient even unto death, yea, the death of the cross.  Wherefore also God highly exalted Him, and gave unto Him the name which is above every name: that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things on earth and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of the Father.


SECTION 2. - SIN AND SALVATION

1. Who is sin?
  Sin is any thought or feeling, word or deed, which is contrary to God's law, or which falls short of what it requires.

2. What is God's law?
  Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.

3. Are we able ourselves to keep God's law?
  We cannot ourselves keep God's law, because without His help we are unable to overcome evil.

4. What is the effect of sin in us?
  Through sin we become both unwilling and unable to please God.

5. When did sin first enter the human heart?
  Sin first entered the heart when man of his own free will fell into disobedience to God.

6. How did our Lord Jesus Christ save us from sin?
  In His great love for us He suffered and died for our sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God.

7. How are we to obtain this salvation for ourselves?
  Through repentance towards God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

8. What is repentance towards God?
  It is true sorrow for our sin, leading us to turn from it to God, with sincere desire to be forgiven, and steadfast purpose to sin no more.

9. What is faith in our Lord Jesus Christ?
  It is believing in Him as our personal Saviour, our Teacher, and our Lord, and putting our whole trust in Him.

10. How can we repent of our sin and believe in the Saviour?
  By the help of the Holy Spirit, Who shows us the truth about sin and about our Saviour.

11. How can we prepare ourselves for the help of the Holy Spirit?
  By prayer, by reading the Holy Scriptures, and by hearing the Gospel preached.

12. What is the Holy Spirit?
  The Holy Spirit is God fulfilling Christ's work in the hearts of men.

13. How ought we, then, to think of God?
  As Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, one God.

14. What, then, is our salvation?
  Our salvation is the forgiveness of our sins by our loving Father, and the gift to us of power over sin and eternal life through the Lord Jesus Christ, by the Holy Spirit.

15. In what way ought we to show ourselves thankful for so great salvation?
  By striving every day to follow the example of Jesus in joyfully doing the will of our Heavenly Father.

Isaiah 53
Who hath believed our report?  and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?  For He grew up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground: He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him.  He was despised, rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and as one from Whom men hide their face; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.  Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.  But he was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.  All we like sheep have gone astray: we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.  He was oppressed, yet He humbled Himself and opened not His mouth; as a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and as a sheep that before her shearers is dumb, yea, He opened not His mouth.  By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who among them considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living?  for the transgression of My people was He stricken.  And they made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death; although He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth.  Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He hath put Him to grief: when thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.  He shall see the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many: and He shall bear their iniquities.  Therefore will I divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong; because He poured out His soul unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Romans 3:23-25
For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God; being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God set forth to be a propitiation, through faith, by His blood, to shew His righteousness, because of the passing over of the sins done aforetime, in the forebearance of God; for the shewing, I say, of His righteousness at this present season: that He might Himself be just, and the justifier of him that hath faith in Jesus.

Romans 5:1-8
Being therefore justified by faith, let us have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ; through Whom also we have had our access by faith into this grace wherein we stand; and let us rejoice in hope of the glory of God.  And not only so, but let us also rejoice in our tribulations: knowing that tribulations worketh patience; and patience, probation; and probation, hope; and hope putteth not to shame; because the love of God hath been shed abroad in our hearts through the Holy Ghost Which was given unto us.  For while we were yet weak, in due season Christ died for the ungodly.  For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: for peradventure for the good man some one would even dare to die.  But God commendeth His own love toward us, in that, while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.


SECTION 3. - THE COMMANDMENTS.

1. Where do we find God's will briefly made known?
  In the Ten Commandments, as explained by our Lord Jesus Christ.

2. What are the subject of the Ten Commandments?
  Our duty to God and to our fellow men.

3. How did our Lord teach us to understand the Commandments?
  He taught us that they include the desires, motives, and the intentions of the heart, so that we cannot keep them unless we love God with our whole heart, and our neighbours as ourselves.

4. What is the first of these Commandments?
  The first Commandment is: That shalt have no other gods but Me.

5. What does this Commandment teach us?
  To take the one living and true God for our God, and to render unto Him alone the honour which is due to Him alone.

6. What is the second of these Commandments?
  The second Commandment is: Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven image, nor the likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth.  Thou shalt not bow down to them nor worship them, for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, and visit the sins of the fathers on the children, unto the third and fourth generations of them that hate Me, and show mercy unto thousands of them that love Me, and keep My Commandments.

7. What does this Commandment teach us?
  To worship God in spirit and truth; not by the use of images or other devices of men.

8. What is the third of these Commandments?
  The third Commandment is: Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain.

9. What does this Commandment teach us?
  It teaches us to regard and use with reverence the Holy Name of God, and not to employ that Name in support of what is not true.

10. What is the fourth of these Commandments?
  The fourth Commandment is: Remember that thou keep holy the Sabbath Day.  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all that thou hast to do; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord they God.  In it thou shalt do no manner of work, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, thy manservant, and thy maidservant, thy cattle, and the stranger that is within thy gates.  For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the seventh day and hallowed it.

11. What does this Commandment teach us?
  That we ought to be diligent in our calling during six days of the week; but keep one day separate for rest and worship.

12. What is the fifth of these Commandments?
  The fifth Commandment is: Honour thy father and mother: that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

13. What does this Commandment teach us?
  That God regards with special favour those who reverence and obey their parents.

14. What is the of these sixth Commandments?
  The sixth Commandment is: Thou shalt do no murder.

15. What does this Commandment teach us?
  To hold human life sacred, and instead of hating or hurting our fellow men, even our enemies, to do them good at all times.

16. What is the seventh of these Commandments?
  The seventh Commandment is: Thou shalt not commit adultery.

17. What does this Commandment teach us?
  To honour God's ordinance of marriage, to preserve modesty, and to keep ourselves pure in thought, speech and behaviour.

18. What is the eighth of these Commandments?
  The eighth Commandment is: Thou shalt not steal.

19. What does this Commandment teach us?
  To be honest and fair in all our dealings, and not to take what does not belong to us.

20. What is the ninth of these Commandments?
  The ninth Commandment is: Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

21. What does this Commandment teach us?
  Always to speak the truth about others, and never to deceive anyone, or spread reports to our neighbour's hurt.

22. What is the tenth of these Commandments?
  The tenth Commandment is: Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his servant, nor his maid, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is his.

23. What does this Commandment teach us?
  Not even in our hearts to grudge our fellow-man his property, or desire to deprive him of that which is his, but always to cultivate a thankful and contented spirit.

Psalm 119:97-104
Oh how love I Thy law!  It is my meditation all the day.  Thy commandments make me wiser than mine enemies; for they are ever with me.  I have more understanding than all my teachers; for Thy testimonies are my meditation.  I understand more than the aged, because I have kept Thy precepts.  I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might observe Thy word.  I have not turned aside from Thy judgments, for Thou hast taught me.  How sweet are Thy words unto my taste!  Yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!  Through Thy Precepts I get understanding: Therefore I hate every false way.

Matthew 5:17-19
Think not that I came to destroy the law or the prophets: I came not to destroy, but to fulfil.  For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass way, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all things be accomplished.  Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.  For I say unto you, that except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and the Pharisees, you shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Luke 10:25-28
And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tempted Him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?  And He said unto him, What is written in the law?  How readest thou?  And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.  And He said unto him, Thou hast answered right; this do, and thou shalt live.


SECTION 4. - THE CHRISTIAN RELIGION.

1. What is religion?
  Religion is the knowledge, worship and service of God, in union with Whom men find their highest and best life.

2. What is the Christian religion?
  The worship and service of God our Father made known to us through His Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

3. What is it to be a Christian?
  To be a Christian is to have faith in God, as Christ has made him known, to put our trust in Christ as our Saviour from sin, to be loyal to Him as our Lord and Master, and to live and serve in the spirit of His life and service.

4. Why should every one be a Christian?
  Because the Christian life is that which God wills for us, because Christ by His Spirit helps us to live that life, and because those who live that life can best serve their fellow-men.

5. How is the Christian character shown in daily life?
  By love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, temperance.

6. How should we treat those who have wronged us?
  Following the example of our Lord Jesus Christ, we should return good for evil, put away all revenge, and, in love, try to do them good, and bring them to a better mind and way of life.

7. What special means has God provided to assist us in leading a life that is pleasing to Him?
  God has provided, as means of grace, His Word, Prayer, and the Fellowship of His Church.

Psalm 1
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the wicked, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.  But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law doth me meditate day and night.  And he shall be like a tree planted by the streams of water, that bringeth forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also doth not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.  The wicked are not so; but are like chaff which the wind driveth away.  Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.  For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous; but the way of the wicked shall perish.

Micah 6:6-8
Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God?  Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old?  Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil?  Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Matthew 5:3-12
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.  Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.  Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.  Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.  Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.  Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called sons of God.  Blessed are they that have been persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are ye when men shall reproach you, and persecute you, and say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake.  Rejoice, and be excceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: or so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

1 Corinthians 13
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal.  And if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.  And if I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profiteth me nothing.  Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not its own, is not provoked, taketh not account of evil; rejoiceth not in unrighteousness, but rejoiceth with the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.  Love never faileth; but whether there be prophecies, they shall be done away; whether there be tongues they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall be done away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part: but when that which is perfect is come, that which is in part shall be done away.  When I was a child, I spake as a child, I felt as a child, I thought as a child; now that I am become a man, I have put away childish things.  For now we see in a mirror, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part ; but then shall I know even as also I have been known.  But now abideth faith, hope, love, these three, and the greatest of these is love.


SECTION 5. - THE WORD OF GOD.

1. What is the Word of God?
  That which at different times and in many portions He spoke of Old through the prophets, and in later days through His Son, Jesus Christ.

2. Where do we find God's Word written?
  In the Holy Scriptures.

3. What are the Holy Scriptures?
  The thirty-nine books of the Old Testament, written before Jesus came, and the twenty-seven books of the New Testament, written after Jesus came: sixty-six books in all.

4. What is the main purpose of the Old Testament?
  To show how God, Who governs the world in righteousness, prepared the way for the coming of His Son, who would set up His kingdom on earth.

5. What is the main purpose of the New Testament?
  To tell the wonderful story of Jesus and His love - how He became man, how He set up His kingdom in men's hearts, how He died, how He rose again from the dead, how He ascended to His Father, and how He Founded His Church.

6. How are we to use the Word of God?
  We are to use the Word of God at all times with reverence, to read it with diligence and love, to treasure it in our hearts and to obey it in our lives.

7. What special help will be given when we thus use the Word of God?
  The help of the Holy Spirit will be given to them that ask, to guide them into all truth, and especially to testify of Jesus.

8. What did Jesus call His message?
  He called His message the "Gospel of the kingdom," that is, the good news of God's love and of His salvation for all people.

9. Why was the story of His life and work committed to writing?
  That reading and thinking about it, all people might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Saviour of the world, and that believing they might have life through His name.

Isaiah 55
Ho, everyone that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.  Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread?  and your labour for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.  Incline your ear, and come unto me; hear, and your soul shall live: and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.  Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the peoples.  Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and a nation that knew thee not shall run unto thee, because of the Lord thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for He hath glorified thee.  Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon Him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.  For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.  For as the rain cometh down and the snow from heaven, and returneth not tither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, and giveth seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so shall my My word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.  For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.  Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree: and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.

Luke 4:16-21
And he came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and He entered, as His custom was, into the Synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read.  And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Isaiah.  And he opened the book, and found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor: He hath sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, and to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.  And he closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on Him.  And He began to say unto them, To-day hath this scripture been fulfilled in you ears.

Hebrews 1:1-4
God, having of old times spoken unto the fathers in the prophets by divers portions and in divers manners, hath at the end of these days spoken unto us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who, being the effulgence of His glory, and the very image of His substance, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had made purification of sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; having become by so much better than the angels, as He hath inherited a more excellent name than they.


SECTION 6. - PRAYER.

1. What is prayer?
  In prayer we speak with God, confess to Him our sins, give thanks for all His gifts, and ask, in the name of Jesus, for such things as He has promised us.

2. Does God always hear and answer our prayers?
  God always hears our prayers, and, in answer, He gives what in His wisdom and love He knows to be best.

3. When and where should we pray?
  We should pray every day, in secret, in our family circle, and in the gatherings of God's people.

4. Why should we pray?
  That we may not forget God, that we may keep ourselves in His love, that our ears may be open to hear His voice, and that our feet may run the way of His Commandments.

5. What have we to guide us in prayer?
  To guide us in prayer we have the Word of God, the Holy Spirit, and especially the prayer which the Lord Jesus taught His disciples, commonly called the Lord's Prayer.

6. What is the Lord's Prayer?
  The Lord's Prayer is: Our Father, which art in Heaven, Hallowed by Thy name.  Thy kingdom come.  Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.  Amen.

7. What do the words, "Our Father which art in Heaven," teach us?
  That we are all children of God, and need not to be afraid to pray to Him, though He is the high and lofty One.

8. What is meant by the words, "Hallowed by Thy name"?
  That our Heavenly Father would lead all men to acknowledge and reverence Him, so that everywhere His glorious praise may be proclaimed.

9. What do we pray for in the words, "Thy kingdom come"?
  We pray that the Gospel may spread and prevail in all the world till the power of evil is overthrown, and Jesus reigns in every heart, and governs all human life.

10. What is meant by the words, "Thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven"?
  That all men may accept God's will, and do it cheerfully, as the angels do in heaven.

11. What do we mean when we say, "Give us this day our daily bread"?
  That God would prosper our daily labour, and provide what is needful for the body, freeing us of anxiety, and disposing us to contentment.

12. Explain this petition, "Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us."
  Here Christ teaches us that we may confidently ask God to forgive us our sins, but that He cannot do so unless we ourselves, from the heart, forgive those who have wronged us.

 13. What do we ask in the petition, "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil"?
  We ask that we may not be exposed to temptation, but that we may be kept from the power of evil.

14. What do the words, "For Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.  Amen" mean to us?
  They teach that all authority, and power, and glory, belong only to God, and that the whole "Lord's Prayer" is our prayer.

Psalm 27
The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?  When evil-doers came upon me to eat up my flesh, even mine adversaries and my foes, they stumbled and fell.  Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: Though war should rise against me, even then will I be confident.  One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire, in His temple.  For in the day of trouble He shall keep me secretly in His pavilion: in the covert of His tabernacle shall He hide me; he shall lift me up upon a rock.  And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me; and I will offer in His tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the Lord.  Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.  When Thou saidst, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face Lord will I seek.  Hide not Thy face from me; put not Thy servant away in anger: Thou hadst been my help; cast me not off, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.  For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me up.  Teach me Thy way, O Lord; and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.  Deliver me not over unto the will of mine adversaries: for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty.  I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  Wait on the Lord: be strong and let thine heart take courage; yea, wait thou on the Lord.

Ephesians 3:14-21
For this cause I bow my knee unto the Father, from Whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, that ye may be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inward man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; to the end that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be strong to apprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that ye may be filled unto all the fullness of God.  Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus unto all generations for ever and ever.  Amen.

SECTION 7. - THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH.

1. What is the Church?
  It is that brotherhood of believers in Jesus Christ, founded by Him, of which He is the only head, in which He dwells by His Spirit, and which though scattered throughout the world, and existing in many branches, is yet one in Him.

2. What names are given to that brotherhood?
  It is called "the Holy Catholic Church" and "one catholic and apostolic Church."

3. What does the name, "the Holy Catholic Church" mean?
  That Christ's people are purified by Him, and include all those who believe in Him throughout the world.

4. What does the name, "one catholic and apostolic Church" mean?
  That Christ's people throughout the world are one in Him, and hold the same faith as preached by the apostles.

5. For what purpose did our Lord Jesus found His Church?
  He united His people in this visible brotherhood for the public worship of God, for a witness to Himself, for mutual help, and for the advancement of His kingdom.

6. What is a sign of a true branch of the catholic Church?
  The presence of Christ, through His indwelling Spirit, shown in life, fellowship and true service.

7. What is Christian Fellowship?
  Christian fellowship is the meeting together, in the name of Christ, of Christian people, in order to seek after God, and to help one another in spiritual things.

8. What is included in the public worship of God?
  The meeting together of Christ's people for praise, prayer, the ministry of the Word of God, and the observance of the sacraments appointed by Him.

9. What is praise?
  Praise is the offering of thanksgiving to God, especially in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with the heart to the Lord.

10. What is the ministry of the Word of God?
  Reading, teaching and preaching from the Holy Scriptures.

11. What is a Christian minister?
  One who is called of God and the Church to teach and preach the Word of God, to administer the sacraments, and to take oversight of the flock of Christ.

12. Why should all who believe in Christ take their place and part in the Church?
  Because they need its fellowship and instruction, and in it they become partners in the spreading of Christ's kingdom.

Psalm 122
I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go unto the house of the Lord.  Our feet are standing within thy gates, O Jerusalem; Jerusalem, that art builded as a city that is a compact together: Whither the tribes go up, even the tribes of the Lord, for a testimony unto Israel, to give thanks unto the name of the Lord.  For there are set thrones for judgment, and thrones of the house of David.  Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.  Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces.  For my brethren and companions' sake, I will now say, peace be within thee.  For the sake of the house of the Lord our God I will seek thy good.

Ephesians 4:1-16
I therefore, a prisoner in the Lord, beseech you to walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; giving diligence to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  There is one body, and one Spirit, even as also ye were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, Who is over all, and through all, and in all.  But unto each one of us was the grace given according to the measure of the gift of Christ.  Wherefore He saith, When he ascended on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now this, He ascended, what is it but that He also descended into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fulfil all things.)  And He gave some to be apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, unto the work of ministering, unto the building up of the body of Christ: till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a full-grown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ: that we may be no longer children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, in craftiness, after the wiles of error' but speaking truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him, which is the Head, even Christ; from Whom all the body fitly framed and knit together through that which every joint supplieth, according to the working in due measure of each several part, maketh the increase of the body unto the building up of itself in love.

Colossians 3:12-17
Put on therefore, as God's elect, holy and beloved, a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, longsuffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving each other, if any man have a complaint against any; even as our Lord forgave you, so also do ye: and above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness.  And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which also ye were called in one bod; and be ye thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in your richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts unto God.  And whatsoever ye do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

SECTION 8. - THE SACRAMENTS.

1. What is a sacrament?
  A sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace given unto us, ordained by Christ Himself, as a means whereby we receive that grace, and a pledge to assure us that we shall continue to receive it.

2. What is meant by the word "sacrament"?
  In the days of the Roman Empire it was an oath of allegiance the solider took when he entered the army, and as used by Christians signifies our pledge to Christ.

3. What is meant by the words, "a outward and visible sign"?
  That which we can know by means of our senses, and which makes us think of something else.

4. What is meant by the words, "an inward and spiritual grace"?
  A spiritual gift of God in our heart.

5. What are the Christian sacraments?
  The Christian sacraments are two, Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

6. What is Christian baptism?
  It is a sacrament consisting of the application of water, by sprinkling, pouring, or immersion, to a person, in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and by which that person is received into the membership of the Church.

7. Of what is water the outward and visible sign?
  Of the cleansing of the heart from sin, and of the new life given to us by the Holy Spirit.

8. Who are proper subjects of baptism?
  Children and all of who repent of their sins and believe in Christ as their Saviour.

9. What is duty of parents whose children have been baptised?
  Their duty is to train up the children in the Christian way, teaching them by word and by example that they belong to God.

10. What may be expected of baptised children?
  It may be expected of baptised children that, as they grow in years, they shall grow also in the grace and knowledge of Christ, exercising repentance towards God and faith in Jesus, knowing that they are His, and are members of His Church.

11. What is the Lord's Supper?
  It is a sacrament in which bread is used as a sign of Christ's body and wine is used as a sign of His blood, and in the partaking of which we feed on Him in our hearts, by faith, with thanksgiving, keep in remembrance His sufferings and death for our salvation, and pledge ourselves anew to His service.

12. What other names are used to describe this sacrament?
  It is called "the Holy Communion", because those who partake are united in Christ and with Christ; it is also called "The Eucharist", because in partaking there is a "giving of thanks" to God for His great love, as shown in the gift of His Son.

13. Who should partake of the Lord's Supper?
  All who are Christian, and all others who are truly sorry for their sins, and desire Christ's salvation.

14. Why should Christ's people and penitents partake of the Lord's Supper?
  Because He wishes them to do so, and because it is the highest act of Christian worship.

15. How should we conduct ourselves in taking part in this sacramental service?
  With reverence and earnestness; with our thoughts fixed on our Saviour; and in the spirit of prayer.

Mark 10:13-16
And they brought unto Him little children, that He should touch them: and the disciples rebuked them.  But when Jesus saw it, He was moved with indignation, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto Me; forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of God.  Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall in no wise enter therein.  And He took them in His arms, and blessed them, laying His hands upon them.

Matthew 28:16-20
But the eleven disciples went into Galilee unto the mountain where Jesus had appointed them.  And when they saw Him, they worshipped Him; but some doubted.  And Jesus came to them and spake unto them, saying, All authority hath been given unto Me in heaven and on earth.  Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.

1 Corinthians 11:23-26
For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered unto you, how that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, This is My body, which is for you: this do in remembrance of Me.  In like manner also the cup, after supper, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood: this do, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of Me.  For as often as ye eat this bread and drink this cup, ye proclaim the Lord's death till He come.

SECTION 9. - THE LORD'S DAY.

1. What day of the week do we set aside for public worship?
  We set apart for public worship Sunday, the first day of the week, which is sometimes called the Christian Sabbath.

2. Why doe we observe Sunday as the Christian Sabbath?
  Because on the first day of the week our Lord Jesus Christ rose from the dead, and His disciples thereafter met for worship, in His name, on that day.

3. What is the best name for that day?
  The best name for the Christian Sabbath is the Lord's Day, as distinguished from the seventh day, the Sabbath of the Old Testament.

4. Are we expected to observe the fourth Commandment exactly as it is written in the Old Testament?
  We are expected to observe that, and all other Commandments, in the spirit of the teaching of Christ; so we should keep one day in seven as our Sabbath day; and in keeping the first day of the week we honour our Lord's resurrection from the dead, and follow the example of His apostles and disciples.

5. What are the main uses of the Lord's Day?
  The Lord's Day is to be used as a day of rest from needless labour and amusements, and kept for the worship of God, for works of mercy, and other forms of holy service, in Christ's name.

6. What are the benefits of the observance of the Lord's Day?
  The observance of the Lord's Day refreshes body and mind after the week's labour, raises our thoughts above earthly cares, and exercises our spiritual nature in God's appointed way.

Isaiah 58:13-14
If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on My holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, and the holy of the Lord honourable; and shalt honour it, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will make thee to ride upon the high places of the earth; and I will feed thee with the heritage of Jacob, thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

Matthew 12:9-13
And He departed thence, and went into their synagogue; and behold, a man having a withered hand.  And they asked Him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath day? that they might accuse Him.  And he said unto them, What man shall there be of you, that shall have one sheep, and if this fall into a pit on the Sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it and lift it out?  How much then is a man of more value than a sheep!  Wherefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath day.  Then saith He to the man, Stretch forth thy hand.  And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, as the other.

Mark 2:23-28
And it came to pass, that He was going on the Sabbath day through the cornfields, and His disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn.  And the Pharisees said unto Him, Behold, why do they on the Sabbath day that which is not lawful?  And He said unto them, Did ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was an hungered, he, and they that were with him?  how he entered into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest, and did eat the shewbread, which it is not lawful to eat save for the priests, and gave also to them that were with him?  And He said unto them, The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath; so that the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.

Hebrews 10:19-25
Having, therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holy place by the blood of Jesus, by the way which He dedicated for us, a new and living way, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh; and having a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in fullness of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our body washed with pure water; let us hold fast to the confession of our hope that it waver not; for He is faithful that promised; and let us consider one another to provoke love unto good works; not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together,as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh.

SECTION 10. - THE CHURCH AND THE STATE.

1. What is the duty of the Church to the State?
  To enjoin obedience to all the laws of the State, unless contrary to the teaching of Christ; to pray for the people, and particularly those in authority; to teach both rulers and subjects the law of God, and to fill the nation with the spirit of Christ.

2. What is the duty of the State to the Church?
  To protect all branches of the Church and their members, in the enjoyment of liberty to worship God, and in efforts to promote the religion of Christ, which do not interfere with the civil rights of others.

3. What is our personal duty to the Church?
  It is our duty to love the Church of God, to join in its public worship, and to give our help in its work at home, and throughout the world.

4. What is our personal duty to our country?
  Our duty to our country is to honour the King, and all in authority under him, to take our share in public life, and to be ready to work and suffer for the common good.

5. What should be our chief aim in life?
  Our chief aim in life should be to live as God's children, loving and pleasing Him, to do service to our fellow-men, and to grow in likeness of our Lord Jesus Christ.

6. What is a Christian's chief comfort in life?
  That in Christ he belongs to God, Who makes all things work together for good to them that love Him.

7. What did Jesus say about food and clothing and other necessaries of life?
  Jesus said, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Psalm 23
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters.  He restoreth my soul: He guideth me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.  Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: Thou hast anointed my head with oil; my cup runneth over.  Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Psalm 67
God be merciful unto us, and bless us, and cause His face to shine upon us; That Thy way may be known upon earth, Thy saving health among all nations.  Let the peoples praise Thee, 0 God; let all the peoples praise Thee.  0 let the nations be glad and sing for Joy: For Thou shalt judge the peoples with equity, and govern the nations upon earth.  Let the peoples praise Thee, 0 God; let all the peoples praise Thee.  The earth bath yielded her increase: God, even our own God, shall bless us. God shall bless us; and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.

Matt. 6: 25-34.
Be not anxious for your life what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than the food, and the body than the raiment?  Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your Heavenly Father feedeth them.  Are not ye of much more value than they?  And which of you by being anxious can add one cubit unto his stature?  And why are ye anxious concerning raiment?  Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin; yet’ 1 say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  But if God doth so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven, shall He not much more clothe you, 0 ye of little faith?  Be not therefore anxious, saying, What shall we eat?  or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?  For after all these things do the Gentiles seek; for your Heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.  But seek ye first His kingdom, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.  Be not therefore anxious for the morrow' for the morrow will be anxious for itself.  Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

1 Peter 2:13-17
Be subject to very ordinance of man for the Lord's sake, whether it be to the king, as supreme; or unto governors, as sent by him for vengeance on evil-doers and for praise to them that do well.  For so is the will of God, that by well-doing ye should put to silence ignorance of foolish men: as free, and not using your freedom for a cloke of wickedness, but as bond-servants of God.  Honour all men.  Love the brotherhood.  Fear God. Honour the king.

SECTION 11. - THE LIFE EVERLASTING

1. What is the will of God concerning the earthly body?
  That at the end of our present life it shall return to the dust.

2. Is death the end of our existence?
  Death is not the end, for our spirits will live forever.

3. What do we learn from the resurrection of Jesus from the dead?
  That as He rose from the dead, so shall we also rise, and that all who fall asleep in Him are with Him in rest and peace.

4. What do we learn from Christ's ascension?
  That He now sits at the right hand of God as our Advocate with the Father, and that He ever liveth to make intercession for us.

5. What has Jesus told us concerning His coming again?
  That at a time known only to God He shall appear again with power, to be glorified in His people, and to be the judge of all mankind, and that for His appearing we should always be ready.

6. What has been made known to us concerning the time when salvation may be sought?
  That "now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation."

7. What has been made known to us concerning the future of those who remain impenitent in their sins?
  Those who remain impenitent in their sins depart into shame, loss and misery.

8. What is the Christian's hope concerning the future state?
  We look for the life everlasting, wherein all who are saved through Christ shall see God, and inherit the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world.

Psalm 16
Preserve me, O God: for in Thee do I put my trust.  I have said unto the Lord, Thou art my Lord; I have no good beyond Thee.  As for the saints that are in the earth, they are excellent in whom is all my delight.  Their sorrows shall be multiplied that exchange the Lord for another god: Their drink offerings of blood will I not offer, not take their names upon my lips.  The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: Thou maintainest my lot.  The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.  I will bless the Lord, Who hath given me counsel, yea, my reigns instruct me in the night seasons.  I have set the Lord always before me: because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.  Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall dwell in safety.  For Thou wilt not leave my soul to Sheol; neither wilt Thou suffer Thine holy one to see corruption.  Thou wilt shew me the path of life; in Thy presence is fullness of joy, in Thy right hand there are pleasures forevermore.

1 Corinthians 15:50-58
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit corruption.  Behold, I tell you a mystery: we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  O death, where is thy victory?  O death, where is thy sting?  The sting of death is sin; and the power of sin is the law: but thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Wherefore my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:1-10
For we know that if the earthly house of our tabernacle be dissolved, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal, in the heavens.  For verily in this we groan, longing to be clothed upon with our habitation which is from heaven: if so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.  For indeed we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened; not for that we would be unclothed, but that we would be clothed upon, that what is mortal may be swallowed up in this life.  Now he that wrought us for this very thing is God, who gave unto us the earnest of the Spirit.  Being therefore always of good courage and knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord (for we walk by faith, not by sight); we are of good courage, I say, and are willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be at home with the Lord.  Wherefore also we make it our aim, whether at home or absent, to be well-pleasing unto Him.  For we must all be made manifest before the judgment-seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Methodist Junior Catechism

Today as I was walking through an old packing house I stumbled upon an old Methodist Catechism.  The Methodist Church essentially no longer exists in Australia, now being a part of the Uniting Church of Australia.  This catechism however is still quite useful.  Unfortunately, it seems to be one of three and whilst I was able to locate the Intermediate Catechism online, I have been unable to find the Senior Catechism.  I have provided it below for those interested.  It is out of copyright now, having been published before 1955, so feel free to use at your own discretion:

The Methodist
JUNIOR CATECHISM

Issued by direction of the General 
Conference of the Methodist 
Church of Australasia

COPYRIGHT

Published by the Methodist Young 
People's Departments of New South 
Wales, Victoria and Tasmania, South 
Australia, Queensland and Western 
Australia.

EIGHTH EDITION

Obtainable at the Book Depots

Price - One Penny Half-penny net.



RESPONSIVE READING

Leader: What is the purpose of the Sunday School?

School: We meet in the Sunday School to worship God and to receive instruction in His word; that we may get a right knowledge of God and newness of our own spirit; that we may be able to walk in the paths of righteousness, and, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, offer service well-pleasing to God, with reverance, awe and love, all the days of our life.



The Methodist
JUNIOR CATECHISM

FOREWORD

This Catechism has been prepared for Sunday School scholars and others under eleven years of age.  It is issued by direction of the General Conference of the Methodist Church of Australasia, and replaces Catechism No. 1.

The questions and answers should be committed to memory, but parents and teachers are earnestly advised to give the instruction necessary for an intelligent use of the Catechism.  It is hoped that in this way the younger girls and boys will have the foundations of the temple of religious knowledge well and truly laid.

The Junior Catechism is part of a graded series.  It is followed by the Intermediate Catechism for scholars from 11 to 13 years inclusive, and the Senior Catechism for those 14 years of age and over.

CONTENTS

Sec. 1. - Home, School and Community . Page 2
2. - God: our Heavenly Father .. .. 3
3. - Christian Conduct .. .. .. .. .. 7
4. - The Service of God .. .. .. .. .. 12
5. - The Lord's Day .. .. .. .. .. .. 14
6. - The Sacraments .. .. .. .. .. .. 14
7. - The Life to Come .. .. .. .. .. 15


SECTION 1. - HOME, SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY

1. What is our duty to our parents?
  It is our duty to love, honour and obey our father and mother.

2. What is our duty to our brothers and sisters?
  It is our duty to love our brothers and sisters, and always to be unselfish towards them.

3. What is our duty to our home?
  It is our duty to our home to be kind, thoughtful, helpful and loyal members.

4. What is our duty to our teachers?
  It is our duty to respect our teachers, and gladly to attend to their instruction.

5. What is our duty to our fellow-scholars?
  It is our duty to be just and generous to our fellow-scholars.

6. What is our duty to our school?
  It is our duty to be true to the aims of our school, and to work loyally with all its members for its success.

7. What is our duty to our neighbours and friends?
  It is our duty to love our neighbours and friends as we love ourselves.

8. What is our duty to strangers?
  It is our duty to be courteous and thoughtful towards strangers.

9. What is our duty to the community?
  It is our duty to show respect to all lawful authority, and to take our part in helpful service for the public good.

10. What is our duty to ourselves?
  It is our duty to think pure thoughts, to speak the truth always, and to do all we can in the service of God and man.

SECTION 2. - GOD: OUR HEAVENLY FATHER

1. Who is God?
  God is our Heavenly Father, Who is everywhere, the everliving Spirit, holy, loving, and perfectly wise and good.

2. What has God made?
  God has made all things by His power and wisdom and will.

3. What is the chief creature on earth?
  The chief creature on earth is man, whose spirit comes from God, and who was made in His image, after His likeness.

4. Why did God make man?
  Man was made that he might know God, might love Him, might live to His praise and be with Him for ever.

5. How do we best know God?
  We know God best through the Lord Jesus, Whose story is told in the Bible.

6. Who is the Lord Jesus?
  The Lord Jesus is the Son of God, Who came in our likeness to make God known to us.

7. What do we learn from the Lord Jesus about God?
  We learn from the Lord Jesus that God is our Heavenly Father, that He loves us with a great love, and that He wants us to be His loving and obedient children.

8. What is the Bible?
  The Bible is the Holy Book in which is the word of God as spoken by His messengers in the days of old.

9. How did the Lord Jesus come "in our likeness"?
  The Lord Jesus was born a babe, and like us grew in wisdom and stature.

10. How did the Lord Jesus spend His years on earth?
  The Lord Jesus spent the thirty years of His life on earth as a child at play, a boy at school, a carpenter at work, and as the Teacher and Saviour of all mankind.

11. How did the Lord Jesus receive little children?
  The Lord Jesus, when little children were brought to Him, took them in His arms and blessed them, laying His hands upon them.

12. What did the Lord Jesus say about little children?
  The Lord Jesus said: Suffer the little children to come unto me; forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of God.

13. How did the Lord Jesus when on earth show His great love for the people?
  The Lord Jesus when on earth showed His great love for the people by making known His gospel to them, by healing their sick, and by His willingness even to die for them.

14. What Bible words briefly set forth the Gospel of the Lord Jesus?
  The Gospel of the Lord Jesus is briefly set forth in these words: For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have eternal life.

15. What invitation did the Lord Jesus give to those who needed rest unto their souls?
  Jesus said to those who needed rest unto their souls: Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

16. How did the people of His day regard the Lord Jesus?
  Some people of His day believed that the Lord Jesus was God's Son, the Saviour of the world, but others, with evil hearts, hated Him, and sought to take His life.

17. How did the Lord Jesus help His friends?
  He spent much time with them, teaching them about God and His kingdom, and so preparing them to carry on His work.

18. What did the enemies of the Lord Jesus do to Him?
  The enemies of the Lord Jesus made Him a prisoner, and persuaded Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, to have Him put to death on the cross.

19. What did the friends of the Lord Jesus do with His body?
  The friends of the Lord Jesus asked Pilate for His body, and, taking it down from the cross, they buried it in a new tomb in a garden.

20. What wonderful things happened to the Lord Jesus shortly after the burial of His body?
  The Lord Jesus rose from the dead on the third day, was seen by many of His friends, and forty days afterwards He ascended to His Heavenly Father.

21. Where is the Lord Jesus?
  The Lord Jesus is in Heaven, at the right hand of the Father, but by His Spirit He is present everywhere.

22. What did our Heavenly Father give to all people after the ascension of the Lord Jesus?
  Our Heavenly Father gave His Holy Spirit to carry on the work of the Lord Jesus in the hearts of all people.

23. What work of the Lord Jesus in our hearts is done by the Holy Spirit?
  The work which is done in our hearts by the Holy Spirit is to teach us our need of God, and how willing God is to save us from all sin, through our faith in the Lord Jesus.

24.  What form of blessing tells us about our Heavenly Father, The Lord Jesus Christ, our Saviour and the Holy Spirit?
  We are told about our Heavenly Father, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit in the Benediction:  The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.

SECTION 3. - CHRISTIAN CONDUCT

1. What is sin?
  Sin is breaking of the law of God, whether in thought, or word, or deed.

2. What is a Christian?
  A Christian is one who, believing in Jesus as his Lord and Saviour, follows His teachings and His example.

3. What must one do first in becoming a Christian?
  In becoming a Christian on must first, with sorrow for his sins, turn from them unto God.

4. How are the two steps in becoming a Christian set forth in the Bible?
  They are set forth in the Bible in these words:  Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.

5. What rules for a good life did God, in the olden days, give to His people?
  In the olden days, as rules for a good life, God gave to His people the ten Commandments.

6. What is the first Commandment?
  The first Commandment is: Thou shalt have none other gods but Me.

7. What is the second Commandment?
  The second Commandment is: Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven image, nor the likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth.  Thou shalt not bow down to them nor worship them, for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, and visit the sins of the fathers on the children, unto the third and fourth generations of them that hate Me, and show mercy unto thousands of them that love Me, and keep My Commandments.

8. What is the third Commandment?
  The third Commandment is: Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain.

9. What is the fourth Commandment?
  The fourth Commandment is: Remember that thou keep holy the Sabbath Day.  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all that thou hast to do; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord they God.  In it thou shalt do no manner of work, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, thy manservant, and thy maidservant, thy cattle, and the stranger that is within thy gates.  For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the seventh day and hallowed it.

10. What is the fifth Commandment?
  The fifth Commandment is: Honour thy father and mother: that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

11. What is the sixth Commandment?
  The sixth Commandment is: Thou shalt do no murder.

12. What is the seventh Commandment?
  The seventh Commandment is: Thou shalt not commit adultery.

13. What is the eighth Commandment?
  The eighth Commandment is: Thou shalt not steal.

14. What is the ninth Commandment?
  The ninth Commandment is: Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

15. What is the tenth Commandment?
  The tenth Commandment is: Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his servant, nor his maid, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is his.

16. What is our Lord's shorter statement of the Commandments?
  Our Lord's shorter statement of the Commandments is: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength; and thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

17. What rule for the Christian life was given by the apostle Paul?
  The rule for the Christian life given by the apostle Paul was: Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

18. What is meant by the words "do all to the glory of God"?
  The words "do all to the glory of God" mean that in everything we do we think of God, we try to please Him and to bring honour to His name.

19. Where may we find the teachings of Jesus about the happy life?
  The teachings of Jesus about the happy life are found in His Sermon on the Mount, and are called the "Beatitudes", which means "blessings".

20. What is the Beatitude about the poor in spirit?
  The Beatitude about the poor in spirit is: Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

21. What is the Beatitude about those who mourn?
  The Beatitude about those who mourn is: Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted.

22. What is the Beatitude about the meek?
  The Beatitude about the meek is: Blessed are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth.

23. What is the Beatitude about those who hunger and thirst after righteousness?
  The Beatitude about those who hunger and thirst after righteousness is:  Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled.

24. What is the Beatitude about the merciful?
  The Beatitude about the merciful is: Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy.

25. What is the Beatitude about the pure in heart?
  The Beatitude about the pure in heart is: Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.

26. What is the Beatitude about the peacemakers?
  The Beatitude about the peacemakers is: Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called sons of God.

27. What is the Beatitude about the persecuted?
  The Beatitude about the persecuted is: Blessed are they that have been persecuted for righteousness sake; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

28. What further words did Jesus say about the persecution of His people?
  Jesus added these words:  Blessed are ye when men shall reproach you, and persecute you, and say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

SECTION 4. - THE SERVICE OF GOD.

1. What is our duty to God?
  Our duty to God is to believe Him, to trust and love Him as our Heavenly Father, to worship Him as our Maker and Keeper, and gladly to do His will.

2. What is the worship of God?
  The worship of God is reverent thought of Him and His word, and the offering of praise and prayer to Him.

3. What did Jesus say about God and His worship?
  Jesus said: God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him, must worship in spirit and truth.

4. Where may we worship God?
  We may worship God everywhere, but chiefly we worship Him in the gatherings of His people, or when we are alone with Him.

5. What prayer did Jesus teach His disciples?
  Jesus taught His disciples to say: Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed by Thy name.  Thy kingdom come.  Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.  Amen.

6. How may we learn what is the will of God?
  We may learn the will of God from the Holy Bible, and by waiting on Him in prayer, believing that He will guide us.

7. How may we use the Bible in the worship of God?
  We may use the Bible in the worship of God by carefully reading it, or by listening to its teachings.

8. What are the gatherings of God's people called?
  The gathering of God's people are called the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.

9. What did Jesus say to His disciples about His presence with them?
  Jesus said to His disciples: For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them.

10. What is our duty to the Church of God?
  Our duty to the Church of God, is to pray for its welfare, and as members to take an active part in its worship and service.

11. What is the duty of the Church to mankind?
  The duty of the Church is to take the gospel of the Lord Jesus to all people, and to set up the kingdom of God in every heart.

SECTION 5. - THE LORD'S DAY

1. On what day does the Church of God particularly engage in the public worship of God?
  The Church of God particularly engages in the public worship of God on the Lord's Day, the first day of the week.

2. Why do we observe the first day of the week as the Christian Sabbath?
  Like the early Christians we observe the first day of the week as the Christian Sabbath, because on that day the Lord Jesus Christ rose from the dead.

3. How should we spend the Lord's Day?
  We should spend the Lord's Day by remembering to keep it holy and by worshipping God with His people, or wherever we may be.

SECTION 6. - THE SACRAMENTS

1. What is the outward sign of entrance into the Christian Church?
  The outward sign of entrance into the Christian Church is the sacrament of baptism, in which by the use of water, we are received as members of the Church.

2. What is a Sacrament?
  A sacrament is a sign and seal of the hidden work of God's Spirit in our hearts.

3. How many sacraments are there in the Christian Church?
  In the Christian Church there are only two sacraments: Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

4. What is the Lord's Supper?
  The Lord's Supper is part of our worship, in which we eat bread and drink wine as signs of the body and blood of the Lord Jesus, and in memory of His sufferings and death for our salvation.

5. Why should children be baptised?
  Children should be baptised because they belong to the Lord Jesus, and should be received into His Church.

6. Who should share in the Lord's Supper?
  All who truly wish to be disciples of the Lord Jesus and members of His Church should share in the Lord's Supper.

SECTION 7. - THE LIFE TO COME

1. What will happen to us at the end of our present life?
  At the end of our present life, our spirit will be separated from our body, and that separation is called death.

2. What does death mean to Christians?
  Christians hope and believe that when death comes, the spirit will return to God Who gave it, and that we shall ever be with the Lord.

3. What did the Lord Jesus say about the Heavenly Home?
  The Lord Jesus said: In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.

4. What will be our greatest joy in our Heavenly Father's house?
  Our greatest joy in our Heavenly Father's house will be to see and to be with the Lord Jesus.

5. Repeat a son of praise in honour of the Lord Jesus from the last book in the Bible.
  Unto Him that loveth us, and loosed us from our sins by His blood;... to Him be the glory and the dominion for ever and ever.  Amen.

THE APOSTLES' CREED

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.  I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy Catholic Church; the Communion of Saints; the Forgiveness of sins; the Resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.  Amen.