September 23: A Catechism in Rhyme (1847)

Yet another form of a children’s catechism. This version was published in THE WESTMINSTER ASSEMBLY’S SHORTER CATECHISM, WITH SCRIPTURE PROOFS.  [Portland : Hyde, Lord and Duren. New-York City : Eli French. 1847.] 


  1. Who made you, child, and bade you live?
    God did my life and spirit give.
  2. Who keeps you safely, can you tell?
    God keeps me safe, and makes me well.
  3. How has God shown the way of truth?
    The Bible is the guide of youth.
  4. How should you act to God above?
    With fear and honour, praise and love.
  5. Does God know all you do and say?
    Yes, and my thoughts both night and day.
  6. Have you and evil heart within?
    Yes; I was even born in sin.
  7. How does your heart its badness show?
    By sinful words and actions too.
  8. Is not God angry when we sin?
    Yes. Oh how wicked I have been.
  9. What do your sins deserve t’ obtain?
    Present and everlasting pain.
  10. And can you save yourself from wo?
    I cannot save myself, I know.
  11. Have you the power to change your heart?
    No; it is prone from good to start.
  12. Who, then, can peace and pardon give?
    Jesus, who died that we might live.
  13. What proves that Jesus Christ will save?
    His life, his cross, his death, his grave.
  14. Can none but Christ for sin atone?
    The blood of Jesus Christ alone.
  15. And how may you his grace receive?
    In Jesus Christ I must believe.
  16. Must you repent with humble heart?
    Yes, and from every sin depart.
  17. From God what blessings should you seek?
    Lord, save my soul for Jesus’ sake.
  18. Should you love Christ, who was so good?
    Oh yes, with all my heart I should.
  19. Did Christ become a little child?
    Yes, holy, humble, meek and mild.
  20. What did his early his’try shew?
    Jesus in strength and wisdom grew.
  21. What was foretold of Jesus’ grace?
    The Lambs he’ll on his bosom place.
  22. And were the young thus loved and blest?
    Christ took and clasped them to his breast.
  23. What did Christ say, though young we be?
    Let little children come to me.
  24. Does Christ still view the young with love?
    Yes, on his glorious throne above.
  25. How should a child begin to pray?
    Lord, teach me what to think and say.
  26. Will God regard the hymns you raise?
    Yes, Jesus loves an infant’s praise.
  27. Who only can direct your youth?
    The Holy Spirit, God of truth.
  28. Must you of ev’ry lie beware?
    Yes, with most strict and constant care.
  29. Must you all evil tempers flee?
    I must not in a passion be.
  30. Must you your book and wisdom prize?
    Yes, I must be both good and wise.
  31. How must a child to others be?
    As I would have them act to me.
  32. What must you to your parents shew?
    Obedience, love, and honour too.
  33. What must your brother(s)* in you find?
    A heart that’s always mild and kind.
  34. Must you your sister(s) always love?
    Yes, and be gentle as a dove.
  35. How must you act to all you know?
    I must all love and kindness know.
  36. Do little children often die?
    Yes, quite as young and strong as I.
  37. Will Jesus judge the “small and great?”
    Yes, and will fix their endless state.
  38. Where shall the wicked sinner dwell?
    With everlasting flames in hell.
  39. What should you wish if call’d to die?
    To be with Christ above the sky.
  40. Where will good children ever be?
    In heav’n, their Saviour Christ to see.

* Or sister(s).
† Or brother(s).


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