Looking for a good book of poems for children, I asked Grace and Truth Books (on Facebook) which books they recommended; they suggested few and I bought three, one is a song book for children and the other two are poetry books. (I will tell you about the poetry ones later this week, they are beautiful!)
This is what I found, a treasure indeed that was first printed in 1713, Divine and Moral Songs for Children by Isaac Watts; compiled, arranged, and edited by Carris J Koscher, from the Old Path Series.
I read on the introduction, (which is very interesting), that this book "is the pinnacle of Puritan literature for children"
This is not a simple book with songs, it is a book that teaches biblical truths. "It will help bind parents and their children into a working faith that will give a cohesive strength to the basic of any society: the family." this is a book, that as you can well imagine was wherever the Mom's Bible was, because as the author of the introduction says, in those days "it was not the responsibility of the Sunday School, or the Grammar School, but of the parents" to teach their children the Christian Religion.
The author of this great introduction, goes on to compare what children read before 1776, with what children read today (1975) in order to stress the importance of this small book of Divine songs. You will certainly enjoy reading her thoughts on this, just look at this:
"The homes (in those days) were happy and harmonious, and children were considered as a joyous blessing from the Almighty and treated as such. It is true that children read lengthy sermons, memorized Scripture and knew by heart the basic tenets of Christianity and were present and quiet in church on Sunday, but the results of this type of child rearing made children responsible, productive and happy. The stark contrast to the child of today is shocking in the extreme."
"Divine and Moral Songs for the Use of Children by Isaac Watts is exactly the type of book children need. It takes great and eternal truths and places it on the level of a child's understanding. It will give children a positive Christian faith, and in working out its implications in their lives, responsibility, and leadership, will be developed more readily. It will serve as a bulwark against modern heresies and lay a sound foundation for later development...
The purpose of Watt's songs is to educate for maturity. It is maturity this world needs, godly maturity.Isaac Watts assumed at all times that it was the duty of an adult to equip a child with a mature faith capable of conquering the world. Education which falls short of that is irrelevant and non Christian"
So, we happily opened the book, and we decided that first song we will learn by heart is Song II, Praise for Creation and Providence, my oldest children will play the piano and we will raise our voices to praise Him in Spirit and in Truth.
I already put this little green book by my Bible, it is a treasure that I want to give to my children.
Praise to God for Our Redemption
Praise God for mercies Spiritual and Temporal
Praise God for the Gospels
The Excellency of the Bible
Praise God for Learning to Read
Heaven and Hell
The Advantages of Early Religion
The Ten Commandments
Our Saviour's Golden Rule
And so many more...
Aren't these things what we long to listen our children sing about?
Today, Lord, I am so grateful for godly people who have worked hard to preserve Christian literature through the years. I want to thank them by making use of the books they worked hard to publish again, I am sure they would be very happy to see that!
I am so excited about this, in our home we will start today , will you join us?
I will give away one of this books for your family to enjoy; just leave a comment and we will announce a winner this coming Saturday. (USA, Canada and Mexico only)
This post is also linked to Raising Homemakers
Remember that starting on December 1st, I will be hosting every Wednesday on December a celebration here. We will be Celebrating the Incarnation of our LORD.