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shooting, just in the place where the gibbet now stands: they were alone, and it was nearly dark. Nobody knows what words passed between them : but the wicked Roger stabbed his brother with a case-knife, and hid the body in a ditch under the garden, well covering it with dry leaves. A year or more passed before it was discovered by whom this dreadful murder was committed. Roger was condemned, and hung upon that gibbet ; and the poor old lady, being thus deprived of both her sons, became deranged, and is shut up in a place where such people are confined. Since that time no one has lived in the house, and, indeed, nobody likes to come
Oh, what a shocking story !” said the children “and that miserable man who hangs there is Roger, who murdered his brother? Pray let us go, papa.”
“We will go immediately,” said Mr. Fairchild : “ but I wish first to point out to you, my dear children, that these brothers, when they first began to quarrel in their play, as you did this morning, did not think that death, and perhaps hell, would be the end of their quarrels. Our hearts by nature, my,
dear children,” continued Mr. Fairchild, “are full of hatred. People who have not received new hearts do not really love anybody but themselves; and they hate those who have offended them, or those whom they think any way better than themselves. By nature, I should hate Sir Charles Noble, because ne is a greater man than myself; and you might hate his children, because they are higher than you. By nature, too, I should hate Farmer Greenfield, because he is ten times richer than I am; and even poor
John Trueman, because, of all the men in this country, high or low, he is the most esteemed. And take me with my natural heart to heaven, and I should hate every angel and every archangel, above myself; and even the glory of the Almighty God would be hateful
to me. But when through faith in my dying Redeemer, I received a new heart, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit of God, my hatred of God and of my fellow creatures will be turned into love : and I shall • love my enemies, bless them that curse me, do good to them that hate me, and pray for them that despitefully use me and persecute me;' (Matt. v. 44 :) like my beloved Redeemer, who prayed upon
the cross for his enemies, saying, ' Father forgive thein ; for they know not what they do.' (Luke xxiii. 34.)
“Papa,” said Lucy, " let us kneel down in this place, and pray for new hearts." “ Willingly, my child," said Mr. Fairchild. So
and his children round him ; and they afterwards all went home.
he knelt upon
A Prayer for Love towards God and our Neighbours,
which may be used by any Child who has been angry with his Companions.
O Lord God, who sent thy dear Son to die upon the cross for us, who by nature hate thee; hear our prayers, for our dear Redeemer's sake. Thou hast commanded us to love everybody ; but we have such wicked hearts, that we do not love any person but ourselves. O Lord, send thy Holy Spirit to cleanse our wicked hearts : and make us to love thee, O Lord God, and to love each other. Let us not despise poor people, but love them and help them ; and let us not envy people who are greater or better than ourselves, but love them also, and bless them, and do good to them. If anybody is kind to us, give us hearts to be thankful to them, and to love them ; and if anybody is unkind to us, give us hearts to forgive them, and love them too; for the Lord Jesus Christ prayed for the wicked people who nailed him upon the cross. And, above all, make us to love our dear father and mother, and everybody who teaches us any good thing; and our dear brothers and sisters, and all the little children we play with : and may we never quarrel, as wicked men and devils do; but live in love, like the angels of God in heaven.
O Lord God, if thy Holy Spirit is in our hearts, we shall do well; but if it is not in our hearts, we shall do evil. Come, then, O Holy Spirit, come into our young hearts, and fill them with holy love.
“Our Father," &c.
WHATEVER brawls disturb the street,
There should be peace at home ;
Quarrels should never come.
Birds in their little nests agree;
And 'tis a shameful sight,
Fall out, and chide, and fight.
That are but noisy breath,
To murder and to death.
The devil tempts one mother's son
To rage against another;
Till he had killed his brother.
The wise will make their anger cool,
At least before the night;
It burns till morning light.
Our little brawls remove ;
Our hearts may all be love.
ON THE FORMATION OF SIN IN THE HEART;
THE STORY OF THE APPLES.
Just opposite Mr. Fairchild's parlour window was a young apple-tree, which had never yet brought forth any fruit : at length it produced two blossoms, from which came two apples. As these apples grew, they became very beautiful, and promised to be very fine fruit.
“ I desire,” said Mr. Fairchild, one morning to the children, " that none of you touch the apples on that young tree;
for I wish to see what kind of fruit they will be when they are quite ripe.”
That same evening, as Henry and his sisters were playing in the parlour window, Henry said, “ Those are beautiful apples indeed, that are upon that tree.” “Do not look upon them, Henry," said Lucy.
Why not, Lucy ?” asked Henry. “ Because papa has forbidden us to meddle with them.”
Henry. “Well, I am not going to meddle with them : I am only looking at them.”
Lucy. “Oh! but if you look much at them, you will begin to wish for them, and may be tempted to take them at last."
Henry. “How can you think of any such thing, Lucy?
take me for a thief ?” The next evening, the children were playing again in the parlour window. Henry said to his sister, “I dare say that those beautiful apples will taste very good when papa gathers them.
“There now, Henry,” said Lucy ; "I told you
that the next thing would be wishing for those apples. Why do
look at them ?” Well, and if I do wish for them, is there any harm in that,” answered Henry, “if I do not touch them?"
Lucy. “Oh! but now you have set your heart upon them, the devil may tempt you to take one of them, as he tempted Eve to eat the forbidden fruit. You should not have looked at them, Henry.”
Henry. “Oh! I shan't touch the apples : don't be afraid.”
Now Henry did not mean to steal the apples, it is true ; but when people give way to sinful desires, the devil and their own passions get so much power over them that they cannot say, I will sin so far, and no farther. That night, whenever Henry awoke, he thought of the beautiful apples. He got up before his
papa and mamma, or his sisters, and went down into the garden There was nobody up but John, who was in the stable. Henry went and stood under the apple-tree. He looked at the apples : there was one which he could just reach as he stood on his tiptoe ; he stretched out his hand and plucked it from the tree, and ran with it, as he thought, out of sight, behind the stable ; and having eaten it in haste, he returned to the house.
When Mr. Fairchild got up, he went into the garden and looked at the apple-tree, and saw that one of the apples was missing : he looked round the tree to see if it had fallen down, and he perceived the mark of a child's foot under the tree : he came into the house in great haste ; and looking angrily, “Which of you young ones,” said he, “has gathered the apple from the young apple-tree ? Last night there were two
upon the tree, and now there is only one.” The children made no answer. “ If you have, any of you, taken the apple, and
, will tell the truth, I will forgive you,” said Mr. Fairchild.