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God's prophecies, and to be sure that they will one day be fulfilled. We must also take care that we are not blameably ignorant of God's word and will. For such ignorance leads men into all manner of sin, and justly exposes them to punishment.

E. Did the curse, then, that you spoke of, fall upon Hiel, mamma?

M. It did; as soon as he began to build the city, Abiram, his eldest son, died, and when he set up the gates of it, he lost his youngest child, who was called Segub,

Nearly six hundred years had passed since this sentence had been spoken by Joshua upon the builder of Jericho. So certain are the Divine threatenings! So dangerous is it to despise them!

E. Was the anger of God upon the city too, mamma, after it was built ?

M. No, my love; the curse had been pronounced upon the builder of Jericho, not upon the city itself, nor upon the people who should live there afterwards. It is a place which is often mentioned after this in Scripture, particularly in the New Testament. It was built in a very large plain about nineteen miles from Jerusalem, and became famous for the schools of the prophets which were kept there in the days of Elijah and Elisha. In our Saviour's time this city was next to Jerusalem for its size and magnificence.

E. Now, mamma, will you tell me about the miracle that Elisha worked there.

M. Yes, it is time to return to our story, from which we have wandered a great way ; but I could not speak of Jericho without telling you something of its history.


unto Bethel. And as he approached that idolatrous city, some young people came out of it, and mocked the holy man, treating him very rudely, and saying, “ Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.”

E. How shocking, mamma! How could they treat one of God's holy prophets so?

M. No doubt, my love, they had been taught by their wicked parents to hate all the people of God, especially his prophets, who were so often sent by God to tell them of their sins, and of the punishment which God was going to bring upon them. But these unhappy parents soon learnt the danger and misery of bringing up their children to scoff at all that is holy and good, and of teaching their young lips to move in rude insults against the servants of the most high God. For as these young people ran after Elisha and mocked him, he turned back, looked at them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And whilst he declared the anger of the Almighty against them, there came two bears out of the wood, and tore them to pieces! Yes, Edward; I do not wonder that you look shocked; it is indeed a dreadful story; but let it be of use to you, my child ; let it teach you to reverence every thing that belongs to God, especially his ministers. Has he not shown us, in this page of his holy word, that he expects us to pay great respect to them, and looks upon any rudeness shown to them as an injury done to himself; and that he will not forgive such an insult even in the young? Oh ! remember this, and never be tempted to join the thoughtless or the wicked in laughing at holy men or holy things.

From Bethel the prophet Elisha went on to Mount Carmel, and then to Samaria. Jehoram, the son of

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