by P. Y. De Jong and John R. Sittema
This catechetical book is intended for instructing boys and girls on the fifth and sixth grade levels in the basics of the Christian faith and life. In our Reformed churches, the Heidelberg Catechism and its Compendium lay down the pattern which we believe should be followed already at an early age.
Always catechetical instruction, which is an aspect of “the administration of the Word”, aims at preparing the heirs of God’s covenant for personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and thus also for partaking of the Lord’s Supper as confessing members of Christ’s church. To that end, some understanding of the “language” of Holy Scripture and therefore also of the church as it proclaims the Gospel is essential.
The arrangement of the material for each lesson is quite self-explanatory.
Before coming to class the children, helped by their parents, should read the Scripture lesson. This, in the light of the “key verse” and the brief explanation, can stimulate a fruitful discussion at family devotions. The “memory work” is to be memorized. Only in this way will basic concepts and convictions of the Christian faith be firmly implanted in youthful minds. Apart from this, much discussion at home and in class will fall short of setting forth the riches of the Gospel. Also “Words to remember” ought to be memorized to enrich the vocabulary of the catechumens and enable them to understand more clearly the sermons which they hear.
After each series of six lessons opportunity for a Review Lesson is provided. The manner in which this is done we leave to the discretion of the teacher. It also should be noted that the “Key Verse” is printed in the New International Version. May this little book be used by the Holy Spirit to bless the students, to strengthen the church, and to glorify the God of the covenant through Jesus Christ our Lord.
John R. Sittema
Peter Y. De Jong