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12. How does Solomon expose the evils of sloth?

The way of the slothful man is as an hedge of thorns. (15 Pr. 19.)

Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep, and an idle soul shall suffer hunger. (19 Pr. 15.)

13. Does sloth lead to want, and diligence to prosperity?

The soul of the sluggard desireth and hath nothing, but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat. (13 Pr. 4.)

14. To whom is the slothful compared?

He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster. (18 Pr, 9.)

15. How does the house of the indolent appear ?

By much slothfulness the building decayeth, and through idleness of the hands the house droppeth through, (10 Ec. 18.)

16. Does the property of the slothful go to waste?

I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; and lo it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down. Then I saw and considered it well, I looked upon it and received instruction. Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep. So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man. (24 Pr. 30 to 34.)

17. How does the apostle describe the characters of

idle women?

They learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle, but tatlers also, and busy bodies, speaking things which they ought not. (1 Tim. 5. 13.)

18. What will be the punishment of that "wicked and slothful servant" who does not improve the talents God has given him?

Cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (25 Mt. 30.)

XXIV. SLANDER. TALE BEARING. SCORNING. MOCKING. FILTHY SPEAKING.

A few texts under each of these heads, describing the evil and punishment of these sins,

1. Does the slanderer deserve punishment?

Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off. (101 P. 5.)

2. What is his character?

He that uttereth a slander is a fool. (10 Pr. 18.)

3. Does the good man avoid this sin?

He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour. (15 P. 3.)

4. What caution does St. James give?

Speak not evil one of another, brethren. (4 Jas. 11.)

5. Is tale-bearing forbidden?

Thou shalt not go up and down as a tale-bearer among thy people. (19 Lev. 16.)

6. What evils does it produce?

A froward man soweth strife, and a whisperer separateth chief friends. (16 Pr. 28.)

Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out, so where there is no tale-bearer the strife ceaseth. (26 Pr. 20.)

7. Is a tale-bearer unworthy of any confidence?

He that goeth about as a tale bearer, revealeth secrets, therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips, (20 Pr. 19.)

8. Is the scorner disliked?

The scorner is an abomination to men. (24 Pr. 9.)

9. How does God treat him?

Surely he scorneth the scorner, but he giveth grace unto the lowly. (3 Pr. 34.)

10. How were those children punished who mocked the prophet Elisha?

As he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him and said unto him,Go up thou bald head, Go up thou bald head; and he turned back and looked on them and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them. (II. K. 2. 23, 24•) 11. Is mocking a reflection against our Creator?

Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker. (17 Pr. 5.) 12. Is all corrupt communication prohibited?

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good, to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. (4 Eph. 29.)

13. What should our speech be employed in?

Neither filthiness nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient, but rather giving of thanks. (5 Eph. 4.)

XXV. TRUTH AND DECEIT. HYPOCRISY.

Commands against lying and exhortations to truth-God requires truth, punishes liars-Advantages of truth, evils of lying-The operation of deceit-HypocritesHow they act-Their detection and punishment.

1. What is the ninth commandment?

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour. (20 Ex. 16.)

2. Are false reports also forbidden?

Thou shalt not raise a false report. (23 Ex. 1.)

3. How does the Psalmist caution against this sin? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. (34 P. 13.)

4. How does Zechariah enforce the importance of truth?

Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour: execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates. (8 Zech. 16.) 5. How does the Apostle write to the Ephesians on

this subject?

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive: but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.-Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. (4 Eph. 14,15,25.)

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6. What does God require?

Thou desirest truth in the inward parts. (51 P. 6.)

7. Does God abhor lying?

Lying lips are abomination to the Lord, but they that deal truly are his delight. (12 Pr. 22.)

8. Did the Psalmist hate the sin of lying?

I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love. (119P.163.) Remove from me the way of lying.-I have chosen the way of truth. (119 P. 29, 30.)

9. Will the deceitful escape punishment?

A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape. (19 Pr. 5.)

10. Are they cursed by God?

Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully. (48 Jer. 10.)

11. Will they be punished with everlasting misery? All liars shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone. (21 Rev. 8.)

Whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. (22 Rev. 15.)

12. Are the advantages of truth permanent, and those of deceit momentary?

The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment. (12 Pr. 19.)

Bread of deceit is sweet to a man, but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel, (20 Pr. 17.)

13. Are deceivers their own greatest enemies?

They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy. (2 Jonah, 8.)

14. Are temporal blessings connected with truth?

He that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile. (I. Pet. 3. 10. & 34 P. 12.)

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