By Amos Binney and Daniel Steele
PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION
This little volume is of humble pretensions. It aims to lay the foundations of a firm belief in the Christian religion, and in particular to furnish young people with the chief grounds of their faith.
Compendiums of infidelity and false doctrine are circulating through every class of community, especially among our youth, and thousands are thereby being drawn into fatal snares.
Such hostile attempts should be met with publications calculated to fortify the youthful mind, by concise and plain statements of the principal arguments in favor of Christianity.
Many excellent treatises of this kind have already been published; yet it is obvious there is something wanting on this subject that is shorter, cheaper, and in a more familiar form.
With this view, the author's chief object has been to collect together, and compress in a narrow compass, the most forcible arguments which are to be found in our best writers, with such additional remarks of his own as might be found necessary.
To these writers this little work is, therefore, much indebted; and its author would here, once for all, tender to each of them his frank acknowledgments.
The work is designed principally for the instruction of youth; yet, considered as a kind of recapitulation of the evidences, doctrines, and duties of Christianity, it may be found of some use to persons of a more mature age.
With this view the matter is thrown into short, clear, and distinct sentences; an arrangement most convenient for the instruction of youth, best calculated to assist their memories, to make strong and durable impressions on their understandings, and to render the important truths of religion most easy to be comprehended and retained in their minds.
The great truths of religion are clearly and concisely stated, and properly arranged, so that their mutual connection and dependence may be readily seen, and, what is of more consequence, they are supported at every step by quotations from the unerring word of God.
To render the work still more entertaining and useful, the questions in the margin are very abundant, so that no important truth can well escape the attention and recollection of the student.
In preparing this little volume, the Divine assistance has been asked; in sending it abroad, the Divine blessing is now implored.
May the Spirit of inspiration accept this feeble effort to manifest his glory and promote his cause! June 1, 1839
A special note from the editor. Binney had questions at the bottom of each page in his original work. We inserted those questions in parentheses and italics in the general area where they appeared in book. Each set of questions are numbered on this page.