The Project Gutenberg eBook of The Little Child's Book of Divinity

This ebook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this ebook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you will have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this eBook.

Title: The Little Child's Book of Divinity

Author: John R. Macduff

Release date: May 5, 2016 [eBook #52001]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Heiko Evermann, Lisa Anne Hatfield and the
Online Distributed Proofreading Team at



Emma and her Grandmamma.

PROMISER,” &c. &c.

“From a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”―2 Tim. iii. 15.

“And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.”―Isa. liv. 13.







Little Emma was one Sabbath evening alone in the room with her grandmamma. Good old Mrs Allan (for that was her grandmother’s name) was seated in her arm‐chair, beside a blazing winter fire. A small table was before her, with a Bible and a pair of spectacles lying upon it.

Emma came jumping up upon her grandmamma’s knee, and kissed her, and said—

“Dear grandmamma, there is much in that large Bible I do not understand; I should like so much to know all it tells about. When I was at church this forenoon, I heard Mr R., our clergyman, speak to the people about what 4he called ‘doctrines;’ and when he was telling about them, there were many things the people liked to hear which were too difficult for me. Do you think you could tell me about them in very simple words, and make them plain to me? I will promise to be very attentive to all that you say.”

“I shall be truly happy,” said the other, looking with a kindly smile on her little grandchild, “to do what you ask me. And if you will come to me for a few minutes every Sabbath night, I will try to explain these Bible doctrines to you as simply as I can.”

So saying, she put aside her spectacles, and drawing her chair closer by the fire, with her arm round little Emma’s neck, began as follows:—


|Of the Being of God.| “There was a time, my dear child, far, far back in eternity, when no one lived but the Great God, when no angel waved his wing, and no star glittered in the sky.

“This ever‐living God did not need angels or worlds to make Him happy. He was quite glorious without them.

5“This great Being was one God; but there were three persons in the Godhead—God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. Of these, there was none higher or greater than the other; they were all equal in power and in glory.

|Of the Creation of all things.| “This Great God resolved on making angels and worlds; and He just said, ‘I wish them to be,’ and they were all made by the word of His power. And it was not a few that He made, but a very great many. He made large armies of angels; and such a number of stars and worlds, that they cannot be counted.

|Of our World.| “Among these crowded worlds which you see in the dark sky at night, there was a very little one—so little, as scarcely to be seen or noticed amid those around it.

“This little star was called ‘the Earth;’ and God loved it very much, and the Three Persons in the Godhead resolved to do something very wonderful with regard to it. God put a happy and holy creature into it, called Man; and He made him after His own image, and placed him in a beautiful garden.

6|Of the Covenant of Works.| “While there, God entered with man into what is called a Covenant of Works.”

“What does a covenant mean?” inquired Emma.

“I shall tell you, my child,” said her grandmamma. “It is an agreement, or bargain, between two people. In the garden of Eden, the two parties were God and Adam; their covenant or agreement was this;—God said to Adam, ‘If you do what I ask you, you shall live and be happy. If you disobey me, you must “surely die.”’

|Of the Fall.| “God told him not to eat of the fruit of one of the trees in the garden; but though Adam had all the rest of the trees in Eden to eat of, he forgot God’s command, and took of the forbidden one; and he was driven out of his happy home, and became a lost and ruined creature.”

“How sad for poor Adam,” said Emma, “to be banished from his beautiful garden!”

“Yes,” said the other; “and sadder still to be banished from his God, with nothing before him but certain death!”

7“But how was it, grandmamma,” inquired Emma, “that Adam did not die all at once? How did he continue to live after God had said that, if he disobeyed Him, he should ‘surely die’?”

“I was just going to explain this to you, my dear,” said Mrs Allan. “Our first parents could not have lived for one moment after their ‘Fall,’ if it had not been for another and more glorious covenant the Bible tells us of.”

“And what was the name of that covenant?” inquired Emma, eagerly.

“It was called the Covenant of Grace,” replied her grandmother. “I shall try, my dear child,” continued she, patting her grandchild on the head, “to make this very great and glorious subject as simple as I can to you; and after you hear me, you will, perhaps, be able to explain it to others.”

Little Emma was again very attentive, and her grandmamma proceeded:

|Of the Parties in the Covenant of Grace.| “I want to see, before I begin, if my little scholar remembers what I have just been telling her,—who the two parties were in the Covenant of Works?”

“God and Adam,” replied Emma.

8“Yes, dear, you are right. And in this new covenant or agreement I am going to speak about, there were two parties also. Do you think you could tell me who they were?”

“Was it God and Adam again?” inquired the little girl.

“No, my child,” said the old lady. “Man, having broken the first covenant, could no longer enter into terms with God. There was some one who came in the place of guilty man. Can you tell me who this was?”

“It was the Lord Jesus Christ,” said Emma.

“Quite correct,” replied her grandmother. “God was angry with man, and could no longer speak with him. But Jesus said, ‘I will come in the room of those lost sinners, and speak to God for them.’ So God and Jesus made a covenant together. It was as if Jesus said to God, ‘O my Father, if Thou wilt pardon these poor sinners, I will leave my glorious throne, and come down to the earth, and die for them, and wash their guilty souls in my precious blood.’ And then God promised, and said, ‘I will pardon them! They deserve nothing but wrath; but, for the sake of what Thou art to do and suffer, as 9their Redeemer, I will shew them “Grace.”’ Hence this new covenant between God and Jesus was called ‘the Covenant of Grace.’”

“I should like to hear more,” said Emma, “about this glorious Being who loved man so much as to die for him. Why is He called by the name of Redeemer?”

|Of the Person of the Redeemer.| “Jesus is called ‘Redeemer,’ because He ‘buys back’ the lost souls of men. No one but God, in our nature, could do this. If the highest angel in heaven had tried to save us, he could not. Jesus Christ was both God and man. He had lived from all eternity ‘with God, and was God.’ He took upon Him our nature, and was born a little babe in the stable of Bethlehem. How sweet for little children to think that Jesus was once himself a little child!”

|Of the Humiliation of Christ.| “How wonderful!” said Emma, “for the great God of heaven to come down to dwell with man on the earth—to be called the ‘Man of Sorrows’—to be poor and hated, and have ‘nowhere to lay His head,’ till He laid it on the Cross, and there died a cruel death!”

“Wonderful indeed,” replied her grandmamma. 10“Can you tell me, my dear child, what became of Jesus after He died?”

|Of His Resurrection and Exaltation.| “Yes,” answered Emma; “I think He was laid in a grave in the middle of a garden in Jerusalem. A stone was put at the mouth of it, and soldiers were made to watch it. But after lying dead three days, He rolled away the stone, and came forth alive.”

“You are right, my child,” said Mrs Allan. “By this, God the Father shewed that He had accepted the work of His dear Son—that the wages of sin were all paid, and that His holy law was satisfied and honoured. After remaining forty days on the earth, Jesus went up among rejoicing angels to heaven.”

“And where is the Lord Jesus now?” inquired Emma.

|Of the Intercession of Christ.| “He who once was ‘despised and rejected of men,’” said her grandmother, “is seated on a very glorious throne in the skies, where blessed spirits without number adore Him. But He has not forgotten poor sinners on earth. He is engaged in praying to God for them; and whatever He asks on their behalf, 11His Father is ready to give; for Him He ‘heareth always.’”

|Of the Second Coming of Christ.| “And is there not a day of awful glory drawing near,” said Emma, “when Jesus shall appear in the clouds of the sky, seated on a ‘great white throne’? How dreadful to be found, on that great day, on the left hand of the Judge! Will there be no chance of His being merciful to these miserable wicked, and of making another ‘covenant of grace’ with them?”

“No, no; impossible, my child!” replied her grandmother. “God’s holiness, and righteousness, and justice, and truth, could not admit of mercy then. Jesus is now seated on a throne of Grace, and entreats sinners to come to Him and be saved. But when once seated on His throne of Judgment, the time of grace is at an end. Those who there seek Him for the first time will never find Him. God has said, ‘Then shall they call on me, but I will not answer.’”

“I should like you,” said Emma, “to tell me what you mean by ‘seeking Jesus.’ I fear I may never yet have sought Him in earnest.”

12“I shall be happy, my dear child, to explain this and many other things to you; but as it would take me too long to‐night, I shall wait till next Sabbath, when, if God spare me, I will speak to you about some more of these solemn truths. I am old, and must soon stand before that great throne; but I have long sought and found Jesus the Saviour, and I am not afraid to meet Jesus the Judge!”

The little child knelt down on her grandmother’s lap, to offer up her evening prayer. The aged Christian entreated earnestly that Jesus would early give her an interest in His “covenant of grace,” that she might be found at last on His right hand, at the great day, an heir of glory!


Sabbath evening again returned; and when the shutters were closed, and fresh wood had been piled on the fire, little Emma climbed on her grandmamma’s knee, and asked her to explain some more “Scripture doctrines.”

“I shall do so with pleasure, my child,” said Mrs Allan; “and I must ask you to give me to‐night your close attention, as I am 13going to speak to you about some very important and precious truths.”

Emma thanked her for her great kindness, in being at so much pains to instruct her; and her grandmamma thus began:—

|Of Justification.| “You will remember, my dear, that the Bible tells us we are all condemned by nature—in a lost and ruined state. In order to make us understand what this state is, it represents,—

|The Judge.| “God as a great Judge, ‘of purer eyes than to behold iniquity,’ and who cannot look upon sin.

|The Prisoner.| “It represents the sinner as standing at His bar, called to answer for his many thousand transgressions.

|The Witnesses.| “And, as in a court of earthly justice witnesses are brought in to condemn the prisoner, so Satan accuses the sinner—his own heart accuses him—God’s Law, which he has broken, accuses him.”

“And what more?” said Emma.

|The Sentence.| “These all,” said her grandmother, “pronounce the sinner ‘guilty’—the Holy Judge passes 14upon him a sentence of condemnation. Oh! how dreadful to think, that, if ‘out of Christ,’ we are at this moment in a condemned state! We have not to wait till a day of judgment to have the sentence pronounced upon us. The Bible tells us we are ‘condemned already,’ and that ‘the wrath of God abideth upon us.’ We are, as it were, shut up in a condemned cell; the kindness and clemency of our Judge alone delaying the execution of the awful sentence!”

“But is there no hope,” said little Emma, “for the poor sinner? Must he die in that state of condemnation and misery?”

|God’s Method of Mercy.| “No, dear child,” replied her grandmamma. “God is willing, for Christ’s sake, to ‘justify’ us.”

“But what do you mean by that word?” said Emma.

“Listen to me,” said the other, “and I will endeavour to explain. I have already told you that the sinner, standing in the court‐room of justice, with the chains of condemnation fastened round him, cannot answer a word for himself; his ‘mouth is stopped,’ and he has become ‘guilty before God.’

15|The Advocate.| “But, in the midst of that court‐room, there is one who stands up to ‘answer’ for him!—it is the ‘Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.’

“God the Judge asks, ‘Sinner! can you say anything to justify yourself?’ The sinner says, ‘Enter not into judgment with thy servant, O God! for in Thy sight no flesh living can be justified.’

|The Grounds of Pardon.| “God is about to execute the awful sentence; but Jesus, his advocate, stands up, and says, ‘I have suffered, “the Just for the unjust;” I have obeyed the law the sinner should have obeyed; I have been “made sin for him;” I have paid with my own blood the price of his redemption!’

|The Acquittal.| “The Great Judge says, ‘It is enough! Take the chains of condemnation off him. I pronounce him, for the sake of what Jesus has done and suffered, “not guilty!” Let him go out of the court‐room a “justified man;” for “there is no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus.”’”

“Do you mean to say, grandmamma,” said 16Emma, “that God thus graciously pardons all the iniquities of the sinner for the sake of Jesus?”

|Two parts of Justification.| |1. Forgiveness of Sin.| “Yes, my child; it is an amazing thought. But, on account of what the Lord Jesus Christ has done, in pouring out His precious blood, this great and holy Judge looks upon the sinner as if he had never sinned at all! He is, in the eye of law, ‘justified’—considered ‘just.’ Jesus is said to be ‘wounded for his transgressions, and bruised for his iniquities.’ Like the scape‐goat under the Jewish law, God ‘has laid upon Christ the iniquities of us all.’ These He has carried away into a land of forgetfulness, where they can never more be found!”

“This is a wonderful doctrine indeed!” said little Emma, “and”――

“Stay, my child,” interrupted her grandmamma, “I have not yet told you the most wondrous part of it:—

|2. Acceptance as Righteous in God’s sight.| “In justifying sinners, God does more than merely pardon them. He not only reckons the sinner as ‘not 17guilty,’ but, for Jesus’ sake, He counts him as positively righteous. All the righteousness of Christ—His obedience, and patience, and love, and resignation, and forgiveness of injuries, and all the holy things of His holy life,—are put down to the sinner’s account; and a holy God actually counts as if they had all been done by the sinner himself. This is what is called Christ’s imputed righteousness.”

“Surely,” said Emma, “this explains the meaning of that verse I was reading to you this morning in Isaiah—‘He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation; He hath covered me with a robe of righteousness’?”

“Yes; you are right, my dear. The holy life, and virtues, and obedience of Jesus, are spoken of as a bright shining robe or garment, in which the poor sinner clothes himself. By nature, in his condemned state, he is black with sin; and his language is, ‘O Lord, look not on me, because I am black;’ but when he puts this imputed garment on, he can say, ‘O Lord, look upon me, for I am all bright and shining with a Saviour’s righteousness!’”

“How kind is God,” exclaimed Emma, “to do all this for vile sinners!”

18|Justification all of Grace.| “Yes, my child; well may justification be called ‘an act of God’s free grace;’ for man has no part in it. He deserves nothing at God’s hand but wrath, and vengeance, and condemnation. He might have been sent away trembling from His bar, crying out, ‘It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God!’ His justification proceeds from free sovereign mercy; and through all eternity his confession will be, ‘By the grace of God, I am what I am.’”

“I fear I may be wearying you,” said Emma; “but I have just one other question to ask you about this glorious doctrine—how can I be justified, and get the great God thus to pardon and accept ME?”

|Received by Faith.| “That is a very proper question,” replied her grandmamma, “and I am happy to think I can give you a simple and easy answer. You are justified ‘by faith;’ by believing that God is able and willing to receive you—that Jesus has shed His precious blood for you—that He died for you on earth, and now lives and pleads for you in heaven. ‘He that believeth on the Son of God hath life.’ ‘Believe in the 19Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.’ ‘Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God.’

“This glorious subject of Justification,” continued she, “has occupied us so long, that it will be better not to speak of any other doctrine to‐night. If spared till another Sabbath evening, I shall do so. I would have you, my child, think very much about this most precious Bible truth—How a sinner is justified before God.

|The Article of a Standing and Falling Church.| “Luther, the great father of the Reformation, said, that a church could not stand for a moment without this doctrine. Like a house without a foundation, it would fall to pieces. And an older saint than Luther—the apostle Paul—had his mind so full of it, that you cannot read his writings, and understand them, without keeping this blessed doctrine constantly in view.”

“Oh how peaceful, and safe, and joyous,” exclaimed Emma, “must the justified sinner be!”

“Yes, truly,” replied her grandmother. “He has nothing to fear. On the great day 20of judgment, however many his enemies and accusers may be, he can look around him on all of them, and exclaim, with the great apostle, ‘Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth; who is he that condemneth?’ Here is a beautiful verse of a hymn I should like you to learn by heart,” she added, repeating twice over to little Emma the following lines:—

“‘Jesus! Thy blood and righteousness
My beauty are, my glorious dress,
’Mid flaming worlds, in these array’d,
With joy I shall lift up my head!’”


“Are you ready now?” said little Emma, coming skipping into her grandmother’s room. “I have just finished learning my verses in Romans, and I so weary to hear about some more Scripture doctrines.”

“I am quite ready,” said her grandmamma; “but it would make me happy, before I begin, to hear you repeat whatever verses you have been committing to memory to‐night.”

21So saying, Emma stood by her grandmother’s chair, and, without a mistake, repeated from the 10th to the 15th verse of the eighth chapter of Romans. The last one was this, “Ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father!”

“I am happy, my dear child,” said old Mrs Allan, “that these have been your verses to‐night, as they refer to the very subject I should like now to speak to you about.

“You remember what I explained to you last Sabbath?”

“Yes, grandmamma,” said Emma. “It was about Justification. God the Great Judge trying the sinner at His bar, and sending him away freely forgiven for the sake of Christ.”

|Of Adoption.| “You are right, my dear; and we are now going to speak about Adoption. I wonder if you know what that is.”

“Oh, no. I have often wondered what that word can mean, and I long to hear from you.”

22|Difference between Justification and Adoption.| “Well, then, my child, as in Justification God acts as a Judge, so in Adoption God acts as a Father.”

“How I should like to hear about this, grandmamma! There is something terrible about the thought of a Judge; but there is nothing but love and joy in the thought of a Father!”

|Of our State by Nature.| “It is true, my dear,” said her grandmother; “but by nature none of us are in the family of God; we are called ‘children of wrath;’ ‘children of the devil;’ ‘enemies!’ God puts a very solemn and striking question about us—‘How shall I set thee among the children?’ He sees that we are such poor miserable sinners, that if He had dealt with us as we have deserved for our sins, we should have been for ever ‘children of wrath!’”

“What, then, could have made God adopt us into His family?” said little Emma.

|Difference between Man’s Adoption and God’s.| “This, my child,” replied the other, “is the thing in which God’s Adoption differs from man’s. When a man takes a little orphan child into his house, 23and is kind to it, and brings it up as his own, it is because of something attractive, and lovely, and engaging in the child. I knew an old gentleman who saw a lovely little boy with golden locks, and he was so struck with his beauty, he would never part with him, but brought him up as his own son. But how different is it with us and God! The Bible represents sinners as lying all filthy and vile in the open field; so vile, that none would look at them, ‘all passed them by!’ But God came, lifted them up, and said unto them, ‘Live!’ ‘I will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters.’ What, my dear Emma, would you call this act of God in Adoption?”

|Adoption all of Grace.| “Oh, I would say,” said her little hearer, “that it is the same as with Justification. It is an ‘act of God’s free grace’—that is to say, that there was nothing about us to make God love us, or be kind to us, and that it was all of His own great and wonderful kindness and mercy in Christ Jesus!”

“You are right, my darling; and do you remember the name of an aged disciple of Jesus who delighted more than all the rest to 24speak of God’s love? And perhaps you remember, too, what he says about this adopting love of God?”

“Oh, yes,” said Emma; “I think that will be the text Mr R. was preaching from last month:—‘Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God!’ But, dear |When Adoption takes place.| grandmamma,” continued she, “you told me last Sabbath that Justification takes place in this world, whenever the sinner believes in Jesus. It cannot surely be that this great honour of being children of God, and adopted into His family, can begin on earth?”

“Yes, dear child, it does,” said her grandmother. “Justification and Adoption are just different names for one great act. God, as I said, is represented in the one as a Judge, in the other as a Father. I don’t know if Mr R. |The Apostle John’s Testimony.| took the next verse in that beautiful chapter along with his text. If he did so, it will tell you when the believer is adopted, and can call God his Father.”

Little Emma quickly turned up her Bible, 25and read as follows:—“Beloved, now are we the sons of God!”

“You see, my child,” continued the old lady, “when this act of fatherly love takes place; it is ‘now;’ and if my dear little Emma loves the Lord Jesus, she can now look up to the Great God, and say, ‘He is my Father;’ and to Jesus, and say, ‘He is my Elder Brother!’”

“How kind in God,” said Emma, with the tear in her eye, “to love sinners so much, and deal with them so tenderly! I think this, too, explains my favourite story in the gospel—does it not, grandmamma?”

|Our Lord’s Parable about Adoption.| “I remember now what your favourite is,” said the other, after thinking a moment; “it is the Prodigal Son; and you are very right; there is no portion of the Bible which speaks more beautifully of God’s adopting love. You remember, at the very same moment that God forgave the Prodigal, He ordered ‘the ring to be put on his finger’ (the ring of adoption); and He calls him, ‘This, my son!’”

“Oh! I shall love to read that parable more than ever,” said Emma. “I don’t think 26any earthly father would have been so kind to an ungrateful son. But you often tell me that ‘God’s ways are not as man’s ways;’ and it is surely so in this.

|Evidences of Adoption.| “But how can I know, dear grandmamma, whether I am a child of God? I would feel as if I was richer and happier than the richest in the world, and greater than earthly kings or queens, if I could be sure that the Great God was my Father, and that I was His child.”

“That is a very natural question, my dear, and I shall do what I can to answer you. Let me ask you another question. What are your feelings towards your earthly parents?”

|Love of God.| “I love them,” said Emma, “very much; I try to do what they bid me, and I am always unhappy when I do anything that vexes or hurts them.”

|Hatred of Sin.| “It is the very same, my dear,” said her grandmother, “with the children of God. If you are really a child of God, you will love Him, and try to do all His will, and be unhappy whenever you sin against Him or displease Him.”

27“I will tell you another thing, grandmamma,” interrupted the little girl; “I am never happy when I am far away from my father, or when my father is far away from me. Sometimes he has to go away for many days to a distance, and I so weary for his coming back. I think and speak of him all the day long; and once I remember, when I was a week away at aunt Fanny’s, I so longed to get back again to be with him.”

|Filial Nearness.| “Well, dear child, you have just given another mark by which you may know if you are a child of God. Do you love your Heavenly Father’s presence? Do you love prayer, |Prayer.| which brings you always near Him? and are you always unhappy when you forget prayer, which drives you away from God; or commit sin, which drives God away from you?”

“Oh, yes, dear grandmamma, I think I can say I am; but then, I often sin, and I fear”――

“Stop, my dear child,” said the old lady. “Remember, it is a great cause of grief to the true child of God, that the power of sin 28is so strong in his heart, and that the devil is so often tempting him.”

“But,” exclaimed Emma, “does not the Bible say, ‘We cannot sin, because we are born of God’?”

|How the Child of God “cannot sin.”| “Yes, my child, you are correct; but I must tell you the real meaning of that verse, so that you may not be cast down by supposing it asks what you cannot give. That verse means, that God’s children cannot go on in a course of sin. They cannot love sin, and continue in sin; but it does not mean that their lives are so perfectly holy that they never can know what it is to have a bad heart and wicked thought. Alas! this never can be, till the adopted children of God get safe into their Father’s house in heaven!”

“Oh! how I wish,” said Emma, “I could love this kind Heavenly Father more than I have ever yet done; and hate sin more and more every day!――I am afraid, dear grandmamma, I tire you with my questions; but I have just one more to ask to‐night, and then I shall go to bed. You often speak of it being our duty to ‘fear God.’ Now, how 29should we fear a God that you have just been telling me to love?”

|What it is to “fear” God in Adoption.| “I do not wonder, my child, at your question. But there are two kinds of fear; the wicked ‘fear’ God as an awful Judge; they fear Him—that is, they are afraid of Him, and tremble to think of His hatred of sin, and His judgment day. But the children of God ‘fear’ their Heavenly Father in another sense; they ‘fear’ to offend Him. It is because they love Him so very much, that they are afraid of doing anything that would displease Him. The wicked man’s fear is what the Bible calls ‘the fear that hath torment.’ The other is the fear, and reverence, and godly awe of ‘perfect love.’

“Good‐night, then, my dear,” said the kind old lady, kissing her little scholar. “I love you much as an earthly parent; but your Heavenly Father loves you more. When you go down on your knees to pray to Him to‐night, think of that sweet verse in Jer. iii. 4, ‘My Father! thou art the guide of my youth!’

“You will not know all the wonders of the 30subject I have been speaking about to‐night till the gracious Heavenly Father who adopts you opens to you the gates of His own palace in glory, and when, taking you by the hand, and shewing you all the unsearchable riches which Jesus has purchased for you, He will say, ‘My child! thou art ever with me; and all that I have IS THINE!’”


“I fear I weary you, grandmamma,” said little Emma, as she opened the room‐door on the following Sabbath, and resumed her accustomed seat by the good old lady’s side—“I fear I weary you, coming so often to hear your nice explanations of Bible doctrines; but you have already enabled me to understand a great deal I never knew before, and have made my Sabbath evenings so happy!”

“I assure you, you have made me happy too, my dear child,” said Mrs Allan, wiping the tear that was rolling down her withered cheek. “I can truly say, I have no greater joy than to talk to you about these glorious truths. I will soon be in that silent place,” continued she, pointing, as she was closing 31her shutters for the night, to the churchyard, on which the moon was then shining; “but it makes me happy to think, that when you can hear my voice no more, you will remember, with joy, the Sabbath evenings we have spent together. Happy, dear Emma, will it be,” her face brightening as she spoke, “if we meet to speak of these blessed truths in the better Sabbath in heaven!”

Emma was about to reply, when her grandmother took her by the hand, and said, with a kindly smile, “Well, dearest, and what would you have me talk to you about to‐night?”

“You are the proper judge,” replied her little scholar, “as to what will best follow after the two beautiful doctrines you have last explained to me, of Justification and Adoption. The other day I came to a difficult word in a book, which, |Of Regeneration.| if it would not be out of place, I should like to know something about. The word was Regeneration, and”――

“Stay, my dear,” interrupted her grandmother; “that is the very subject I was thinking of. You could not have named a better; and if you will give me all your 32attention, I shall try to open up this great doctrine to you as simply as I can.

“Do you remember what I told you about Justification?—What God does to the sinner when He justifies and adopts him?”

|Difference between Justification,| “He changes his state,” replied Emma. “He brings him from a state of wrath to a state of grace,—from a state of condemnation to a state of pardon.”

“You have given me just the answer I wanted,” said her grandmother—“that it is a change of state or condition. In Justification, from being a rebel, the sinner is pardoned by |Adoption,| his Sovereign. In Adoption, from being a prodigal, he is received back into his Father’s lost home. Now, dear,” continued she, “did I say that in these there is produced also any change in character?”

“I don’t think so,” replied Emma.

“You are right; and you will instantly see how well it is that I should speak to |And Regeneration.| you about Regeneration to‐night, which is the very word which tells about this great change of character or mind, which is as necessary to 33salvation, as the great change of state and condition of which I have already spoken. What is your own idea, my dear child, as to the meaning of Regeneration?”

“Indeed, grandmamma,” replied Emma, “it is such a long and difficult word, that I am ashamed to tell, though I have often heard it mentioned in Mr R――’s sermon, I never understood it aright.”

“You should never be ashamed, my dear, to ask those older than yourself to explain Bible difficulties to you. Many grow up to be big people, in great ignorance, owing to this false shame.”

“Is it the same, grandmamma,” said Emma, “as Repentance? I think I understand that word better.”

|Bible Terms about Regeneration.| “Yes, my child, there are many words in the Bible used to denote this same great change, and which you must often hear ministers speaking about. ‘The new birth’—being ‘born again’—‘Conversion’—‘Repentance’—‘Regeneration;’ but the meaning of them all may be summed up in this,—the necessity of a new heart, produced by the Holy Spirit, who turns the old heart 34from the service of sin to the service of God.”

|Necessity of Regeneration.| “But must every one have this entire change of heart before he can be saved?”

“Yes, dearest, it is a doctrine many don’t like to believe, or to hear about, because they think it makes the way to heaven too strait and narrow; but do you remember anything Jesus said about it, when He was speaking to inquiring Nicodemus?”

|What Jesus says of it.| “Oh, yes,” said Emma, “you have put me in mind of the verse now—‘Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’”

“You are quite correct,” replied the old lady. “That same blessed Saviour never spoke an unkind word, and He would never have uttered this, unless it was a solemn truth, ‘Marvel not that I said unto you, Ye must be born again.’”

“But if the sinner,” asked Emma, “is justified in the sight of God, and God calls him ‘not guilty,’ and pardons him, and says of him there is no condemnation, what 35more does he require, in order to be saved?”

|A Change of State and a Change of Heart must go together.| “A great deal more,” replied her grandmother. “Let me ask you,” said she to Emma, “two questions, which may help to explain the matter to you. If a king pardoned a rebel, and if that rebel still hated his sovereign, and sought to kill him, would it be safe for the king to receive the ungrateful rebel into his palace?”

“No!” replied Emma.

“Or, if a father received back a prodigal son; but if that son continued prodigal as ever, breaking, with fresh sin, his poor old father’s heart, and corrupting his other brothers, could that father permit him to live in his house?”

“No, surely,” still replied Emma.

“Well, dearest, what would require to be done to make it safe for the king to keep company with the rebel he had pardoned; and the father to take the son to live with him in his own household?”

“If they had changed and better hearts,” said Emma.

“You have just given again the answer I 36wanted,” said her grandmother. “I want you to see it is the same with the sinner. God the King has pardoned the sinner‐rebel. God the Father has adopted the sinner‐prodigal; but He never could receive him into His glorious palace of heaven, unless what?”

|Change of Heart in Regeneration needed for Heaven.| “Oh, unless his heart is changed,” exclaimed Emma. “I understand it now. He must have a holy heart,—a heart to love God and hate sin. I see quite well he could not get into heaven with an unchanged heart!”

“Yes, my dear child,” said the other (happy that her little grand‐daughter was now able to see the meaning of Regeneration); “and even if the sinner could get into heaven with his sinful, unchanged, unconverted heart, could he be happy?”

|Heaven a place for holy Hearts.| “I don’t think,” said Emma, “he could; he would be miserable in that holy place, amid holy angels and a holy God. I see quite well now the truth of what Jesus says, ‘Except ye be converted, ye cannot enter in the kingdom of heaven.’

“But,” continued little Emma, getting 37more interested in the subject, “I should like much to know how, and when, and where we are regenerated, and get this new mind.”

|The Agent in Regeneration.| “Like every other thing in salvation,” replied the old lady, “this great change of heart and life is the work of God; and though all the glorious Trinity are engaged in producing it, it is more especially brought about by the agency of the third person in the blessed Godhead—the Holy Ghost.”

“But how do you know when it takes place?” continued Emma. “Are we aware of the time when the Holy Spirit works this great change?”

|The Method of Regeneration.| “No,” replied her grandmother. “You remember how simply and beautifully Jesus speaks of this to one who was asking about it, and wondering about it, like you. That, just as you cannot tell where the wind comes from—you hear it blowing, but cannot tell from where—‘so is every one that is born of the Spirit.’ That new birth, or change, is wrought silently in the soul. It is like the little dew‐drops that sparkle in the morning sun, which gather unseen and unnoticed 38during the night; or like the Temple of Jerusalem of old, which was built without any noise of ‘hammer, or axe, or any tool of iron;’—it rose without din or observation; and this is the case with every renewed heart when it becomes a ‘temple of the Holy Ghost.’”

“Then it takes a long time, grandmamma, before a sinner’s heart can be changed?”

|Various Modes of Operation.| “The Spirit of God, my child, acts how, and where, and when He pleases. He sometimes converts and renews, in a moment, as He did the thief on the cross and the jailer of Philippi, or the thousands at Pentecost. Sometimes He does it gradually (or by degrees), as in the case of Nicodemus; and sometimes, as I trust, my dear Emma, is the case with you, He sanctifies from infancy, changes the young heart, as He did in the case of Timothy, and Samuel, and Jeremiah.”

|Am I Regenerated?| “Oh! I am happy to hear you say so,” replied Emma, “for I was beginning to fear that I had never felt the Holy Spirit changing my heart, and that I must surely be yet unregenerated 39and unsaved. Such a thought would be very awful to me.”

“I trust, my dear child,” said her grandmother, “I have good reason to believe that God, by His grace and Spirit, has ‘turned you from darkness to light,’ and given you a heart to love Him and serve Him. I wish that many little children would have such a |Awful Importance of Regeneration.| fear as you speak of. I wish many, too, would remember that one little word MUST, and who says it, ‘Ye MUST be born again!’”

“Dear grandmamma,” said Emma, “I must pray more than I ever have done for a clean heart. I fear, till you have been explaining this to me, I have thought too much about my sins being washed in Jesus’ blood, and too little about my heart being changed and made holy by Jesus’ Spirit. I see that I need both, and will try and pray for both.”

“It is a good resolution, my dearest,” said the other; “and the Great God, for your encouragement in asking for a change of heart, gives you in His own blessed Bible both a prayer |A Prayer for it, and its Answer.| and an answer. Give me 40your Bible,” continued she, “and, as I feel unable to speak more to‐night, I will mark the two places to which I refer, and you can take them with you to your own room, and read them to yourself.”

The good old lady kissed her little grandchild, putting two pieces of paper at what she had so marked. Emma, saying “Good‐night,” ran up‐stairs with her Bible in her hand, and, having shut her door, read to herself, before she knelt down to her evening prayer, these two verses:—

The Prayer.—“Create in me a clean heart, O God; renew a right spirit within me” (Ps. li. 10).

The Answer.—“A new heart also will I give you, and a right spirit will I put within you; and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh” (Ezek. xxxvi. 26).


“I am now ready for you,” said old Mrs Allan, as little Emma was waiting anxiously for the time when she might again seat herself 41by her grandmother’s chair. “What am I to tell you about to‐night?”

“I have been thinking,” replied Emma, “if you have no more to explain about the great work in the soul of the believer, that I should like to hear more of that glorious Being to whom the sinner owes all the precious blessings you have been telling me of.”

|Of the Person, Offices, and Work of Christ.| “I shall gladly do so, my dear child. It is a delightful subject to converse upon the Person, Offices, and Work of the Lord Jesus Christ, who, though He was rich, yet for our sakes He became poor.”

“I shall hear attentively,” said Emma, “what you have to say, as there is much about the Person of Jesus I do not rightly understand. He is called |Christ the Son of God and Son of Man.| both ‘Son of God’ and ‘Son of Man.’ I often wonder how this can be.”

“This, my child,” replied her grandmother, “is the great mystery of godliness, ‘God manifest in the flesh,’—but it is a glorious mystery; and happy shall I be to speak to you upon it.

42|Son of God.| “The Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. He was ‘with God, and was God.’ Before this world, or any worlds were made, He dwelt from everlasting with the Father. He is equal with Him in power and in glory. If He had been an angel, or an archangel, He could not have saved us, for the highest archangel is only a creature—and one created being cannot atone for the sin of another. In one word, if Jesus had not been God, He could not have been the Saviour of man.”

|Son of Man.| “But is he not spoken of,” said Emma, “also as the Son of Man?”

“Yes, my dear; and I must add, if He had not been man, He could not have saved us. As our surety, it was necessary for Him to suffer and die in the nature which had sinned—and besides, you know, that as God, He could not have suffered, because the Divine nature is a spiritual one. Therefore it is that He says, ‘A body hast thou prepared Me.’”

“I think, too,” said Emma, “it is a blessed thought that our great Redeemer was a man. If He had been God only, He could not have 43felt for us in the way He can do as the ‘Son of Man.’”

“You are right, my dear child. This is one of the most delightful thoughts about the person of Jesus, that He is our ‘elder brother,’ and not ashamed to call us ‘brethren.’ He can say to all of us, ‘I know your sorrows,’ for He was Himself ‘the Man of Sorrows,’ and felt them all.”

|Titles of Jesus.| “Would you explain to me,” said the young inquirer, “the meaning of some more of the names of the Lord Jesus Christ?”

|Immanuel.| “He is called,” said her grandmamma, “by that beautiful word, which tells that He is both God and man, ‘Immanuel,’ which means, ‘God with us.’

|Jesus.| “Then He is called ‘Jesus,’ because He ‘saves’ His people—the word Jesus meaning ‘Saviour.’

|Messiah, Christ.| “Then He is called ‘Messiah,’ and ‘Christ,’ because He is the anointed of God—both words meaning ‘anointed.’ As kings, in ancient times, had anointing oil poured upon 44their heads when they were set apart to their royal office, so our blessed Saviour had the anointing oil of the Holy Spirit poured upon Him, to qualify Him for His offices as mediator.”

“The Offices of Jesus; dear grandmamma, I have often heard these spoken of. Will you kindly explain to me what they mean?”

|The Offices of Christ.| “The Lord Jesus Christ, my dear child, stands in different relations, and performs different acts with regard to the Church He has redeemed with His precious blood. I shall mention to you the three under which He is most frequently referred to.

|Prophet.| “Jesus is the Prophet of His Church. He is her great Teacher. By means of His precious Word, and the influences of His Spirit, He makes known to us His own will, and the will of God for our salvation.

|Priest.| “Jesus is the Priest of His Church. A priest, you know, in former times, offered sacrifices on the altar. Jesus is called the ‘Great High Priest of our profession.’ He was Himself both the Priest and the Victim, for ‘He 45gave Himself for us;’ and just as the Jewish high priest of old went into the holy of holies and sprinkled on the mercy‐seat the blood of the slain sacrifice, and prayed to God for the people, so Jesus has carried the merits of His own blood into heaven, and, as our High Priest, is there pleading our cause at God’s right hand. You remember, too, the high priest of old, after being within the vail, came out to bless the waiting people. So Jesus, our Great High Priest, will, at His second coming in glory, bless His assembled Church, saying, ‘Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.’

|King.| “Jesus also is King of His Church, the ruler in it, and ruler over it. He protects it from its enemies; and though often, like the bush which Moses saw in the wilderness, it burns with fire, He will prevent it from ever being consumed. He will continue to reign over it as King, until all enemies be put under His feet.”

“What a wonderful and complete Saviour, grandmamma!” exclaimed Emma. “Jesus is so great, and yet so compassionate! I feel 46as if I can adore Him as God, and yet love Him as a brother.”

“True, most true, my dear child; He is all you need—the very Saviour you do need. It is a wonderful thought, His Godhead and His Manhood! As God, angels and seraphs worshipped Him. As Man, little children smiled in His arms!”

“I love to think of Him, too,” said Emma, “as my High Priest in heaven. It does |Christ’s Intercessory Work.| not make me afraid to approach the Great God, when I have so kind a Saviour to intercede for me.”

“You are right, my dear,” said the other; “there is no thought more pleasing and delightful, than that we have in glory ‘a Prince’ that has ‘power with God,’ and must ‘prevail.’ The Apostle Paul rejoiced much in this truth. It gave him ‘boldness,’ as he calls it, to approach the throne of grace. And the Apostle John, in his vision on the Isle of Patmos, beheld Jesus as the Angel of the Covenant, with a ‘censer’ in His hand. His people on earth put all their prayers into this censer, and a fragrant cloud ascends from it before the throne.”

47“What is the meaning of that?” asked Emma.

“It tells us, my child,” said her grandmother, “that the believer’s poor, imperfect prayers, when sprinkled and made fragrant with the incense of Christ’s adorable merits, ascend with acceptance into the ear of God Himself. God hears the poorest and unworthiest of His saints, for the sake of the work and merits of Jesus.”

“I can now well understand,” said Emma, “how the Apostle Paul could say with such a grateful heart, ‘Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift!’”

“Yes,” replied the other, “it is unspeakable—and the more you know of Jesus, the more wonders will you discover in His person, and the more glories in His work. Oh! seek to love him more and more every day. Let it be your constant wish, and desire, and prayer—how can I do enough for this Saviour who has done so much, so very much for me?

“But I can say no more to‐night. May this blessed Saviour, my dear child, be yours—yours now, and yours for ever!”



“It is a long time,” said Emma, running to her grandmother’s side, “since you were last able to tell me those nice things about Bible doctrines. I have been longing much for you to be able to speak to me again about them.”

“I feel better and stronger now,” said old Mrs Allan, who had been for many weeks laid aside, “and I am as happy as my little Emma can be, to find myself once more in my old oaken chair, with her at my knee.”

“Thank you, grandmamma,” said she, clinging affectionately to her withered hand; “and what are you going to speak to me about to‐night?”

“Our last conversation, my child, if I remember well, was on the intercessory work of the Lord Jesus. I think you would like to hear me speak of the final great act of His mediatorial reign, when He will come at the |The Resurrection and Judgment.| resurrection to judge the world.”

“Oh, yes!” said Emma; “I should like much to hear of that awfully 49glorious day. I often tremble when I think about it.”

“It has no terrors, my child, to God’s own people. It is to them a very joyful day—the happiest of all their lives; for then they shall be brought to the full enjoyment of God for ever.”

|Souls of Believers at Death.| “But, dear grandmamma, I thought, when believers die, they go to heaven at the very moment of death; that the angels of God are waiting by their pillows to carry them into Jesus’ bosom.”

“True—most true, my child,” replied the aged lady; “the moment the saint closes his eyes on this world, he opens them in heaven. The souls of believers are at their death made perfect in holiness, and do immediately pass into glory. You perhaps remember some of the things the Apostle Paul said in the prospect of death?”

“Yes,” said Emma; “‘Having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ, which is far better;’ ‘Willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.’ I remember, too, of Stephen, when his wicked murderers were stoning him, how he cried out, ‘Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.’”

50“Quite right, my dear; and that other saying of the Saviour to the poor thief on the cross is more to the point still, when He said to him, ‘Verily I say unto thee, To‐day shalt thou be with me in paradise.’”

“But then, from all these verses,” said Emma, “is not heaven begun at the hour of death?”

“It is, my child,” replied her grandmother. “I have already told you that, at the moment of death, the soul of the saint is made perfectly holy, and happy too, beyond what we can now conceive; but its state of final and complete glorification will not take place until the day of judgment.”

“What is it,” said the little inquirer, “which will then add to its state of glory and blessedness?”

|The Bodies of Believers.| “You know, my dear,” was the reply, “that the body of the believer is not taken to heaven at the hour of death. It is laid in the tomb. You remember too well that sad day when your little brother was laid in his grave in the churchyard. His happy spirit, I believe, is now in heaven, joyful in the presence and love of God; but his 51full state of glory and blessedness will not be complete until his body is raised again on the resurrection morning. Perhaps I should tell |Purchased by Christ.| you that the body, as well as the soul, is part of the purchase of the Lord Jesus Christ. Every particle of the saints’ dust is redeemed by His blood. The Apostle speaks of ‘our bodies and our spirits’ as ‘not our own,’ but ‘bought with a price.’”

“But how can this be?” inquired Emma; “do you mean that the bodies of those who have been buried for ages will come all to life again, and the soul be once more united to these?”

|Raised from the Grave.| “Yes, my dear, it is indeed a wonderful thought. But what cannot the power of God do? He has said that He will raise us up at the last day. Do you remember any of the words of Jesus about this?”

Emma thought a little, and at last turned up her Bible to the verses, and read them: “Marvel not at this; for the hour is coming in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection 52of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” “But how,” continued she, when she had finished, and once more repeating her question of surprise—“how, grandmamma, can this be?—does not the dead body crumble into dust? How can the particles that have for hundreds and thousands of years been mixed with the earth come together again?”

“God can do anything, I answer once more,” was the reply of the other. “We should always remember that what is impossible with man, is possible with God. We are not without examples, my child, in the natural world, of the wondrous changes which the power of God can produce in smaller |The Doctrine of the Resurrection probable from Analogy.| things; and this shews us (from what is called analogy) that we have no right to question the doctrine I am now speaking about, however strange and apparently impossible it may seem to be.”

“What instances, grandmamma,” said Emma, “may I ask, do you refer to in the outer world? I should like to understand better what you mean.”

53“I like to hear you asking for more information, dear Emma, and I shall try to give it to you. Well, then, I know you have often seen the bright and beautiful butterfly with its golden wings and rings of silver. Can you believe that that lovely insect was once a little grub or caterpillar? I see you are astonished, my dear, at what I now say; but it is the case. During winter, these little worms lie in what is called a chrysalis state. During this time there is nothing in the least beautiful about them—I would say rather the reverse; but all at once, when the summer sun shines out, the little insect bursts its coating, and is changed into a lovely butterfly or moth, with expanded wings, flying up into the blue sky, or ranging at large amid the garden flowers.”

“Oh how wonderful is this!” exclaimed Emma; “and I see now, grandmamma, what you mean. This little creature teaches me to understand how the same mighty power of God, that changes the caterpillar into a butterfly, can bring about the still more wonderful change in raising our vile bodies from the grave.”

“You are right, my child,” said her grandmother. 54“I am glad you have understood me; and if I had time, I might give you other instances of a similar kind. You have seen, for example, the farmer put the little grains of seed into the ground; could you ever have expected that the small pickles thrown into the earth would spring up into the rich fields of yellow corn you have seen waving at harvest time?”

“Oh no,” replied Emma; “I have often thought how curious this is, and also that the little annual seed I sow in my own garden‐plot should spring up such lovely flowers. The seed looks so small and withered like, and the flowers are so beautiful in colour, and have such a sweet smell.”

“Well, my dear, does not God give us proofs in these smaller things of what He can do in greater things. The body laid in the grave is like the seed laid in the ground, ‘it is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory.’ I should like you,” continued the old lady, “to take your Bible and read all that striking and beautiful passage of the Apostle Paul on |Testimony of St Paul.| this subject.” Emma immediately opened to the 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians, 5542d verse, and read aloud as follows:—“It is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption: it is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power: it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.... Behold, I shew 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. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.”

“What a wonderful scene that will be!” said Emma, as she closed her Bible. “Dear grandmamma, can you tell me when it will take place?”

|When the Resurrection will be.| “No, my child,” replied she; “the Bible tells us that ‘Of that day and hour knoweth no man; no, not even the angels that are in 56heaven.’ God seems purposely to keep us in the dark about the time of the coming of Jesus, that we may be always ready for it. It matters little how long or how short it may be, provided we are now living as we would wish we had done when we hear the trumpet sounding.”

“And what sort of bodies,” said Emma, “will they be that will then rise from the graves?”

“All that I can tell you,” replied her grandmother, “is, that they will be glorious |Glory of the Resurrection Body.| bodies, fashioned like unto Christ’s glorified body. They will be no more subject to decay, and weakness, and disease, and death. It is said of them, ‘They shall be like Him’ (like Jesus), and also, ‘Neither shall they die any more.’ And surely no blessedness can be greater than this—to be like Jesus, and never to die.”

“Oh, grandmamma!” exclaimed Emma, “I feel as if I would not be afraid to go to the grave, after all that you have been now telling me.”

“True, my child, the lowliest grave in yonder churchyard, if it be the grave of a true 57believer, is holy ground. Perhaps angels are watching over it, and Jesus himself counts its dust precious. The grave of the wicked is a prison house, where they are detained in captivity until the day of awful vengeance; but the grave of the saint is a casket holding a precious jewel. It is a bed of rest, where he gently and peacefully ‘sleeps’ till awakened on the happy morning of immortality.

“But I must here, my dear, pause for to‐night. We have been speaking so much about this wondrous doctrine of the body’s resurrection as to render it necessary that I should wait till another Sabbath to speak as I promised about the day of judgment.”


“You promised, grandmamma,” said little Emma, as she found herself once more seated by the old oaken chair, “to tell me to‐night |The Last Judgment.| about the Day of Judgment. I long to hear you speak about so solemn a subject. There is much about it I do not understand.”

“It is, my child,” replied the other, “a 58solemn subject. It will be a dreadful day to the wicked; but it will be a happy day to all God’s dear children—the happiest day in their lives.”

“Tell me, then, dear grandmamma, all that the Bible tells us about it. I shall promise to listen with great attention.”

|What it is.| “The Judgment,” answered the other, “is that great transaction which is to take place at the end of the world, when every man, and woman, and child, that ever lived, will be brought to trial before God’s ‘great white throne.’ A trumpet will sound over their graves. As I told you last Sabbath, the mouldering dust will come to life again, and the dead, small and great, will stand before God.”

“What a wonderful and awful thought!” exclaimed Emma; “but do you mean to say that all will be there, without any exception?”

“All!—all!” replied the aged lady, “from Adam to the last inhabitant of the world. There will be those who lived before the flood, and since the flood. Patriarchs, and Prophets, and Apostles—Jews and Gentiles—Pagans and Christians—rich and poor—young 59and old—learned and unlearned—kings and beggars—not one will be wanting; and more still, you and I will be there. Our eyes will look on that vast crowd.”

“And tell me,” continued Emma, deeply impressed with the thought, “who is the |The Judge.| Judge that will be seated on the throne you speak of? and what will He do?”

“If you refer, my child,” said her grandmother, “to the seventeenth chapter of Acts, thirty‐first verse, you will there read who is set apart as Judge of the world.” Emma turned up the passage in her Bible, and read as follows:—

“For He hath appointed a day in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead.”

“Oh, I see now!” she exclaimed, as she closed her Bible; “it is the Lord Jesus Christ who is to be Judge. It makes me glad to think of this; for if I love and serve Him now, I will not be afraid to meet Him then. 60|The Throne.| But why is it said that He is to be seated on a white throne?—will it really be so?”

“I cannot tell,” replied the other, “what the outward marks of majesty will be in which He will appear, although, doubtless, these will be very great; for it is said that He will come ‘in His glory,’ and that He is to have ‘all His holy angels with Him.’ But He is spoken of as seated on a great white throne, to denote His awful purity and holiness; that He will give on that day every one his due. His mercy will not interfere with the exercise of justice and holiness, and sinners will not escape unpunished.”

“I think I now remember, dear grandmamma,” said Emma, “of reading in that same chapter in Revelation which speaks of the throne of the Judge, that He is to have |The Books.| some books lying open before Him.”

“Yes, my child, you are right; ‘the books,’ we are told, are to be ‘opened.’ What these books may be we cannot tell; but perhaps they may be the books of the Law and the Gospel—the books of Conscience, and Memory, and Privilege; and especially 61the Great Book of Remembrance, in which all |The Book of Remembrance.| our words, and deeds, and actions, are preserved. All that every individual has ever done will be found recorded in it. Many will wonder when they come to see how faithful the pen of God has been in writing down all;—heart sins, and tongue sins, and life sins. I fear not a few suppose that there are many trifling faults (or, as they call them, ‘little sins’) which they imagine God does not think it worth while to take notice of. They will find every one of them recorded. They may have forgotten them long ago; but they will all be brought to light again on that Great Day.”

“If this,” exclaimed Emma, “be indeed the case, who is there but must tremble at the thought of that day?”

“The wicked, my child,” continued her grandmother, “will and must be afraid to think of it. All who have not known the salvation of Jesus, and fled to His precious blood, must be covered then with confusion and shame. They will then be led to see, what they never saw before, what an evil thing sin is, and what a holy being God is. 62But His own people will have nothing to fear. They can say now, in the words of the beautiful hymn—

‘Bold shall I stand on that great day;
For who aught to my charge can lay,
While by Thy blood absolved I am
From sin’s tremendous guilt and shame?’

Yes, dear Emma, they will be able to look up with joy in the face of their Judge, and say, ‘It is God that justifieth, who is he that condemneth?’”

“But what! Do you mean, grandmamma, that God does not take account of the sins of the righteous?”

“No, no, my child; every one of their sins is written down as well as those of the wicked—dreadful pages of guilt, too, that might well overwhelm them with wrath and condemnation.”

“How, then,” continued Emma, “can it be different with them from the others? How can God pass over their many sins?”

“He does not—He could not, my child,” replied the aged lady, “pass any sins over. But you may have heard of another book which |The Book of Life.| God will have before Him on that day. It is the Book of Life. There the names of all the redeemed are written. None who are written 63therein can be lost! It is as if the great Judge took His pen and drew it through every page of recorded sins, marking them all out with the blood of the Lamb of God.”

“But,” asked Emma, “will it not make the believer very sad and sorrowful on that day to see such an awful record of sins? It will be enough, surely, to bring floods of tears to his eyes.”

“I do not wonder at your saying so, my dear; but I think the thought of his sins will be lost in a still more wondrous and amazing one—I mean in thinking of the work of Jesus, that could take so many sins away, making them all forgiven and forgotten, and blotted out for ever.”

“Oh that my name, dear grandmamma, were safely written there! I feel as if I never could be for another hour happy or joyful until I felt sure that my name was in the Book of Life!”

“You have, my dear child, all the assurance necessary, if you are now believing in the Lord Jesus—trusting in His merits—seeking to love Him—to do what He commands—and avoid what displeases Him. Of such He says (Rev. iii. 5), ‘I will not blot out his 64name out of the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before my Father and before His angels.’”

“But tell me further,” said Emma, “how will the work of judgment proceed?”

“Jesus, my child, after the books have been opened, and the vast multitude have been brought before Him, will go on to pronounce sentence upon each. It will be a solemn scene. We read that ‘He will |The Awards.| separate the righteous from the wicked as a shepherd divideth the sheep from the goats.’ In this world the good and the bad, the ‘tares and the wheat,’ are mixed up together. We cannot tell the holy from the unholy; but Jesus knows them all; and on that day He will parcel all mankind into these two great classes. In one or other every human being must be placed.”

“On whom will He pronounce sentence first?” inquired Emma.

“He will address the righteous first,” said her grandmother. “It will not, indeed, be with them a day of wrath. Believers, at the time of their justification (as I explained to you on a former evening), were dismissed 65with the sentence of ‘not guilty’ pronounced upon them. They are brought before God’s throne, that there they may be ‘openly acknowledged’—receive a public acquittal before men and angels—and listen to that happy, happy sentence, ‘Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.’”

“I can well imagine their joy,” said Emma; “but what next?”

“It will be a sadly different scene, my child. Let the words of Jesus himself tell you of it—you will find them in the 25th chapter of Matthew, 41st verse.”

Emma again turned to the passage, and read, “Then shall He say also to them on the left hand, Depart, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.”

“After this,” continued the aged lady, “we read no more about the doings of that great day. The court is dissolved—the trial over. We see the golden gates of heaven open to receive happy saints and angels; and the miserable wicked sink down to the regions of despair! This solemn day terminates the kingdom of grace on earth. The kingdom of glory is then completed. The elect are 66gathered into it from the four quarters of heaven. They ‘enter into the joy of their Lord.’ But this I must reserve speaking to you about, if God spare me, till another Sabbath.”


Spring once more returned with its green fields and bright sky. The little birds were beginning to raise their earliest notes, as if telling one another how happy they were that winter, with its snow and its storms, was again over, and that the fresh buds were beginning again to appear. The small, old‐fashioned lamp, too, which was filled every Saturday, so as to be ready for the Sabbath evening, was, from the long twilight, no longer required. As the last rays of the setting sun were falling through the latticed window, Emma was found once more at her grandmother’s side.

“I think, my dear,” said the latter, laying aside her spectacles, and drawing her grandchild nearer her—“I think I left off speaking last Sabbath when we were just beginning to 67talk of the most wondrous and glorious of all Bible subjects.”

“Oh yes,” replied Emma, “you had told me about the doings of the great Day of Judgment, and you were commencing to |Of Heaven.| speak about the glories of heaven, when you thought it would be better to wait till now.”

“Truly, my child,” said her grandmother, “I would require rather to wait till that heaven itself begins, in order to give you any idea of its happiness. We are told that ‘eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him.’”

“I was reading a little ago, when sitting at the window,” said Emma, “the description of this glorious heaven given us in the last chapters of the Bible, where it is said to be a |How described in Revelation.| great city, with streets of gold like transparent glass, walls of jasper, and foundations of precious stones. And here, too, is another beautiful verse, grandmamma,” continued she, as her eyes glanced over the 21st chapter of Revelation: “‘And the city had 68no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.’ And here yet another lovely description,” she added, “I love so to read it: ‘And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.’”

“I have not interrupted you, my dear child, in reading these beautiful verses,” said the aged lady; “they give us a bright and glowing picture of happiness and glory, which our minds can in no other way conceive.”

|To be understood figuratively.| “But will there indeed be golden streets, and crystal walls, and all these precious stones that are here spoken of?” inquired Emma.

“There will be far greater magnificence, and far purer happiness,” replied her grandmother, “than all the gold and gems this world could give. These are just figures or 69emblems employed by God in His Word to convey to us some idea of the vast glory of heaven. No earthly words, or thoughts, or language, could describe this; and therefore, as men consider gold and precious stones the most costly and valuable things in the world, they are used as pictures to give us some feeble representation of heavenly blessedness.”

“What, then, dear grandmamma, will heaven really be? What kind of a place is it? and how are the righteous employed when they get there?”

|The Scenery of Heaven.| “I cannot tell,” replied the other, “what character of scenery there will be in heaven, nor in what particular spot in the universe this happy place is prepared. The Bible does not gratify our curiosity about this. For anything that is known to the contrary, there may be much there that we love and admire in this world. There may be beautiful skies, and clear rivers, and gushing fountains, and lovely flowers, and sweet music. But still, as I have said already, regarding all these the Bible says nothing.”

70“What, then, will heaven consist in, grandmamma?” inquired Emma.

|Negative and Positive Blessedness.| “I was just going to say, my child, that there are many things we know will not be there, and many things we know will be there. Does little Emma think she could tell me any of the things we have in this world that we shall not have in heaven?”

“Oh yes,” replied the little girl, “I think I know. We shall have no sin there, and no sorrow there, and no death there.”

|Negative.| “Quite right, my child,” said her grandmother. “This is a world of sin, and therefore it has become a world of pain, and sickness, and sorrow, and death; but in heaven all these will be unknown. I thought I saw you, my dear, but yesterday seated in the churchyard on little Robert’s tomb; and when you came home, I observed by your eyes that you had been weeping for the loss of your little brother. In that happy heaven I am speaking of there will be no graves and no tears, for there will be no sin and no death to cause them.”

“But then, dear grandmamma, will there be no other joys in heaven?”

71|Positive.| “Yes, yes, my child,” replied the aged lady; “I have only spoken to you of what is not in heaven. I have yet to tell you what is there. Can little Emma answer this question too, as well as the last?”

“I shall meet all my dear friends there,” said Emma—“my father and mother, who were both taken from me when I was so young, and little Robert, and you too, grandmamma, who have so kindly led me on in the way to that happy place, and told me often how I am to get there.”

“My dear child,” said her grandmother, “all that you have said about meeting departed friends there is true. All who are the friends of Jesus will meet in that happy home. I believe it to be true,” she repeated, the tear filling her eye as she spoke. “Parents will know their children, and children their parents; and brothers and sisters will meet never to part any more. But this is but a very small portion of the joy of heaven. Can you not think of a far greater joy in that bright world than even the meeting of the dearest earthly friends?”

“Oh yes,” replied Emma, “we shall meet 72God!—we shall see Jesus face to face! |Vision of God.| This will be the greatest, surely, of all the glories of heaven—to dwell for ever with God, and discover more of His grace and love!”

“Yes, truly, my child,” said the other; “this is to heaven what the sun is to the universe. All the other glories we can speak of are only, by comparison, like the light of the stars to that sun, or like little streams to the great ocean. We shall ‘see God;’ and what, perhaps, is more wondrous still, we shall be like God. Along with the holy angels, we shall have no higher delight than doing His will. We shall feel that in His presence ‘there is fulness of joy.’”

“But shall we indeed see God?” inquired Emma; “the thought seems so wondrous. How can this be?”

|How God will be Manifested.| “Here again, dear child,” replied her grandmother, “we must not try to be wise beyond what the Bible has told us; for it is there said, that ‘He dwells in light that is inaccessible and full of glory, whom no eye hath seen, neither can see.’ That there will be some bright and glorious manifestation of 73His presence I cannot doubt; but what the |The Presence of Jesus in the midst of the Redeemed.| nature of this will be I cannot tell. This we know, however, with certainty, that Jesus, our blessed Redeemer, in His glorified human nature, will be seen and adored by the countless multitudes of His ransomed people.”

“I saw,” said Emma, “a verse immediately following the words I a little ago read, which speaks of this. Here it is: ‘And they shall see His face, and His name shall be in their foreheads.’”

“Yes, my child; and you may perhaps remember some other passages which tell the same blessed truth. Do you remember what made John so happy in the prospect of heaven?”

“Oh yes,” replied Emma, “I recollect now. He says with such joy, ‘We know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is.’”

“Quite right, dearest,” said her grandmother; “I shall just remind you of one more. It is the Saviour’s own last prayer for His people—‘Father, I will that they also whom Thou hast given me be with me where I am, 74that they may behold my glory.’ Do you remember the name by which Jesus is spoken of again and again in the book of Revelation, describing to us how He now appears in glory?”

“Yes,” replied Emma; “I have often been struck with the title there given to Him. He is called ‘the Lamb that was slain.’ I often wonder why He should be called so, now that He is in heaven, seated on His throne, with all His sufferings at an end.”

“It is, my dear child,” answered the aged lady, “a very precious name. It tells that He continues, and will continue, to wear His glorified human nature there, and that, too, through all eternity. It tells us also that the redeemed will never cease to remember that it was to the shedding of His precious blood that they owe every gem of their crowns.”

“And doubtless,” said Emma, “the happy company of the saints will for ever delight to think more and more of the love of Jesus?”

|Their Contemplation of Christ’s Love.| “You are right,” said the other. “It will assuredly be one of the greatest joys in heaven to comprehend with all saints what is the height and depth, and 75length and breadth, and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge. They will ever be trying to know more and more of this love; but they will never be able to understand all its meaning.”

“I daresay, too, much that we cannot now understand will be cleared up?” said Emma.

“Yes, my dear,” replied her grandmother; “God’s wisdom and faithfulness will then be as fully revealed as His love. There is much that takes place on earth which is perplexing |Providences Explained in Heaven.| to us—what we call ‘dark dealings,’—as, for example, when good and useful lives are taken away, and evil and worthless lives are spared; but Jesus, you remember, said, ‘What thou knowest not now, thou shalt know hereafter.’ I believe we shall then not only ‘know,’ but see, that ‘all things have been working together for good to them that love God.’ Sore trials and afflictions will then call forth loud songs of praise; and it will be made manifest that the Judge of all the earth had done right.”

“And will all these blessed saints,” inquired Emma, “be equally holy and happy?”

“They will all, my dear, be holy,” said the 76old lady, “for ‘without holiness no one could see God,’ far less enjoy Him; and they will all, too, be happy—not one tear will be in their bright faces. But I believe, too, that some |Degrees of Bliss in Heaven.| will be happier than others. All will be like vessels full to the brim with glory and happiness; but some vessels will be larger than others, and able, therefore, to contain more happiness. We read that they shall differ ‘as one star in the firmament differs from another star in glory.’ Some stars are of a larger size than others; some are nearer the sun than others: so those who have lived nearer Jesus on earth, and loved Him with larger hearts, will be nearer Him in heaven. While all, therefore, who are believers will be happy, those will be happiest who are walking closest with God now. If you will turn to the twelfth chapter of Daniel, you will find there a striking verse, telling of different degrees of coming happiness. Here it is,” continued the old lady, pointing her little grandchild to the third verse: “‘They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.’”

77“Oh! what a glorious, happy prospect, dear grandmamma! Would that I could feel sure of being one even of these feeblest stars!”

|How Heaven is Obtained.| “There is but one way, my child,” replied the other, “of joining that bright company of which we have been speaking. It is the blood of Jesus alone that can open these glorious gates. But that blood has opened them, and keeps them open still, to the chief of sinners. That blessed Redeemer seems still to stand at the gate of heaven, and say, ‘I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved.’

“But I feel, my dear Emma, that my strength is failing, and I am unable to speak more to you this evening. Give me your Bible, and I shall double down the leaf at my favourite description of the joys of heaven.” She accordingly took her little grandchild’s Bible, and putting a mark with her aged finger at the seventh chapter of Revelation, thirteenth verse, returned it to her again, saying, “Should you, my child, be with me at my dying hour, when my tongue is too feeble to speak, remember to read to me that sweet 78passage. I have often wished that I might have some one to read to me these words when I pass through the Dark Valley.”

|Conclusion.| Little did Emma suppose that the words which now fell upon her ear would so soon come true. A few weeks only passed by, when her grandmother was laid upon a bed of sickness and pain, which soon proved a bed of death. The aged saint bore up under her sufferings with calmness and fortitude. She was kept in perfect peace, for her mind was stayed on God. Her dear little grandchild was her faithful companion during her last hours. The night before her death, when she was fast sinking, and her lips getting paler and paler, Emma remembered faithfully the request made to her. The tear started to her eye as she opened her Bible, and saw the leaf still folded down. She read it with a trembling voice. The poor old sufferer was able to do no more than clasp her withered hands as the happy sentences fell on her ears. When she had fallen asleep in Jesus, and was laid in the churchyard which she had so often looked to from her window, Emma delighted to go with her Bible in her hand, 79and, sitting on the green turf which covered her grave, to read the well‐known passage: “And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb, which is in the midst of the throne, shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters; and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

Back Cover

Transcriber’s Notes

A Table of Contents has been added for convenience.

In the caption for the frontispiece, “Grandmama” has been changed to “Grandmamma” to make it consistent with the rest of the project.

On page 46, “in” has been corrected to “on” at “vision on the Isle of Patmos.”

Obvious punctuation errors have been silently corrected.