These piercing statements apply to Christians because the natural mind is always tending toward deceptive self-righteousness. Also in part he is trying to provoke people who think they are Christians but are “trusting in a refuge of lies,” to reconsider. Some topics are: intellectual assent is not holiness; natural gifts and sentiments are not to be confused with true spiritual life; adopting healthy habits is not necessarily spiritual repentance; and zeal for a cause is not necessarily Christian devotedness. The huge participation rate of all mankind in self-deception should give one pause to reconsider these issues.
A devotional style book of fifty-two names of Jesus Christ organized by weekly chapters. The chapters include a verse for each day, an exposition and a poem on each name. “It has been the purpose of the author to furnish a Hand-Book, in which the Christian might daily find a text of Scripture referring to his Saviour, as a subject for meditation; which, in connection with the thoughts in prose, and the selected poetry, would also form a continuous topic for a week.”
Arthur and Asahel embark on a happy search after treasure in an old mine. The physical darkness makes them aware of their spiritual darkness as they go exploring. Asahel is a Jew and knows Old Testament history, while Arthur thinks himself a Christian but his heart does not embrace it. Arthur proclaims “You had love without knowledge; I knowledge without love. Yours was ignorance—mine was sin!”Arthur and Asahel embark on a happy search after treasure in an old mine. The physical darkness makes them aware of their spiritual darkness as they go exploring. Asahel is a Jew and knows Old Testament history, while Arthur thinks himself a Christian but his heart does not embrace it. Arthur proclaims “You had love without knowledge; I knowledge without love. Yours was ignorance—mine was sin!”
Paperback 6X9, 134 pages, 7 illustrations. Amazon.com link; ISBN 9781941281529
Twelve beatitudes are illustrated by twelve stories, one to a chapter. When Lucy Claremont was denied a trip to the fair by her mother, discontent and rebellion took over, but ended in repentance and mourning over her sin. When a blind girl thirsted for knowledge of the Lord, her desires were more than granted. Mercy is shown when a very sick person is carried out of a burning building. A.L.O.E. states: “I have endeavored in the following Tales to convey religious instruction in a form that may prove attractive to the young; to illustrate the character of true Christianity in a series of stories, practically exemplifying the beatitudes.”
The twenty-five devotional chapters teach Biblical passages and apply them to life. In chapter one Dr. Cuyler describes Israel’s journey from Egypt to Canaan when they obeyed in faith and sang the song “Spring up O well! Sing ye unto him!” with their lips but also dug the well with their shovels. Through the triple process of praying, digging (actions) and singing praise we learn that God provided. Dr. Cuyler teaches that every Christian should be involved in all three types of behavior as they seek God. The title of the book, “Wayside Springs” is God bringing blessing no matter how dry the desert, and the “Fountain of Life” is the crystal stream that flows out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.
The many bees include Sipsyrup who is vain, and Honeyball who is lazy. They argue and complain, and their behavior yielded unfortunate results. There is another story happening outside the beehive: the young girl Polly whose vanity about her clothes leads to the mysterious disappearance of Johnny, her brother. The moral as stated at the end of the story is “However young, however weak, dear children, you may be, know that the youngest, the weakest, have some power here to give either pleasure or pain.” Also contained in this book is the short story “Hold Fast” by A.L.O.E., which has the theme of salvation by Christ alone.
Paperback 6X9; 110 pages; 3 illustrations. ISBN 9781941281475; Amazon.com link
The fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, etc. are exemplified throughout the book, one to a chapter. Angus Tarlton was a sixteen year old boy who was a prideful, disagreeable person that had lost his enthusiasm for life because of a crippling accident. The story shows how he learned to be a comfort and companion to others. He was able to accomplish a brave, heroic deed which exemplified many fruits of the Spirit. Also contained in this book is the short story “Don’t Be Too Sure” by A.L.O.E., which is about trusting in God’s Providence instead of your own plans and abilities.
Paperback 6X9, 102 pages, 2 illustrations. ISBN 9781941281499; Amazon.com link
The young twins, Guy and Berry, heard a sermon about Christ’s second coming and they wondered if they were ready. Guy drew a picture of people being raised with Christ and went around asking people if they would like to be in the picture. The question challenged people to evaluate their own readiness. “The independence of the twins was a great puzzle to their stepmother,” but the spirited children were good witnesses for Christ through their innocent ways.
Nanny gave the four sisters different verses from Psalm 37 to meditate on before she left. Then the sisters moved to a rented home where the owner was a woodcarver who had made an intricately carved cupboard. The house was taken under the condition that it was forbidden to open the cupboard. They wondered how it opened and what could be inside the mysterious cupboard. As the secret unfolded the sisters grew spiritually, each in their own way, each according to their prophetic verse.
Matthew Henry encourages and exhorts readers in their daily communion with God. The book is organized into three sections: How to begin the day, How to spend the day and How to end the day with God. Also included is the spiritual basis to make "Friendly Visits" to people. Time tested Matthew Henry is direct and deep and he makes point after point about what is true about God and how we should commune with God because of who He is. The text was relatively updated by the Religious Tract Society.