First Catechism & Westminster Catechism
Truth for God's Children
Link to First Catechism
Grade Questions 1-20
What is the chief end of man?
- ManÍs chief end is to
glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.
What rule has God given to direct
us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
- The Word of God, which is
contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule
to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.
What do the Scriptures principally
The Scriptures principally teach,
what man is to believe concerning God, and what duty God requires of man.
What is God?
- God is a Spirit, infinite,
eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice,
goodness, and truth.
Are there more Gods than one?
- There is but one only, the
living and true God.
How many persons are there in the
- There are three persons in
the Godhead: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are
one God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory.
What are the decrees of God?
- The decrees of God are, his
eternal purpose, according to the counsel of his will, whereby, for his own
glory, he has foreordained whatsoever comes to pass.
How does God execute his decrees?
God executes his decrees in the
works of creation and providence.
What is the work of creation?
- The work of creation is,
GodÍs making all things of nothing, by the word of his power, in the space
of six days, and all very good.
did God create man?
- God created man male and
female, after his own image, in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness, with
dominion over the creatures.
What are GodÍs works of
- GodÍs works of providence
are, his most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all his
creatures, and all their actions.
special act of providence did God exercise towards man in the estate wherein he
- When God had created man, he
entered into a covenant of life with him, upon condition of perfect
obedience; forbidding him to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and
evil, upon pain of death.
our first parents continue in the estate wherein they were created?
- Our first parents, being left
to the freedom of their own will, fell from the estate wherein they were
created, by sinning against God.
- Sin is any want of conformity
unto, or transgression of, the law of God.
was the sin whereby our first parents fell from the estate wherein they were
- The sin whereby our first
parents fell from the estate wherein they were created, was their eating the
all mankind fall in AdamÍs first transgression?
- The covenant being made with
Adam, not only for himself, but for his posterity; all mankind, descending
from him by ordinary generation, sinned in him, and fell with him, in his
what estate did the fall bring mankind?
- The fall brought mankind into
an estate of sin and misery.
consists the sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell?
- The sinfulness of that estate
whereinto man fell, consists in the guilt of AdamÍs first sin, the want of
original righteousness, and the corruption of his whole nature, which is
commonly called original sin; together with all actual transgressions which
proceed from it.
is the misery of that estate whereinto man fell?
- All mankind by their fall
lost communion with God, are under his wrath and curse, and so made liable
to all the miseries of this life, to death itself, and to the pains of hell
20.Did God leave
all mankind to perish in the estate of sin and misery?
- God, having out of his mere
good pleasure, from all eternity, elected some to everlasting life, did
enter into a covenant of grace to deliver them out of the estate of sin and
misery, and to bring them into an estate of salvation by a Redeemer.
Grade Questions 21-40
is the Redeemer of GodÍs elect?
- The only Redeemer of GodÍs
elect is the Lord Jesus Christ, who, being the eternal Son of God, became
man, and so was, and continues to be, God and man in two distinct natures,
and one person, forever.
22.How did Christ,
being the Son of God, become man?
- Christ, the Son of God,
became man, by taking to himself a true body, and a reasonable soul, being
conceived by the power of the Holy Ghost, in the womb of the virgin Mary,
and born of her, yet without sin.
does Christ execute as our Redeemer?
- Christ, as our Redeemer,
executes the offices of a prophet, of a priest, and of a king, both in his
estate of humiliation and exaltation.
24.How does Christ
execute the office of a prophet?
- Christ executes the office of
a prophet, in revealing to us, by his Word and Spirit, the will of God for
25.How does Christ
execute the office of a priest?
- Christ executes the office of
a priest, in his once offering up of himself a sacrifice to satisfy divine
justice, and reconcile us to God, and in making continual intercession for
26.How does Christ
execute the office of a king?
- Christ executes the office of
a king, in subduing us to himself, in ruling and defending us, and in
restraining and conquering all his and our enemies.
ChristÍs humiliation consist?
- ChristÍs humiliation
consisted in his being born, and that in a low condition, made under the
law, undergoing the miseries of this life, the wrath of God, and the cursed
death of the cross; in being buried, and continuing under the power of death
for a time.
consists ChristÍs exaltation?
- ChristÍs exaltation
consists in his rising again from the dead on the third day, in ascending up
into heaven, in sitting at the right hand of God the Father, and in coming
to judge the world at the last day.
29.How are we made
partakers of the redemption purchased by Christ?
- We are made partakers of the
redemption purchased by Christ, by the effectual application of it to us by
his Holy Spirit.
30.How does the
Spirit apply to us the redemption purchased by Christ?
- The Spirit applies to us the
redemption purchased by Christ, by working faith in us, and thereby uniting
us to Christ in our effectual calling.
is effectual calling?
Effectual calling is the work of
GodÍs Spirit, whereby, convincing us of our sin and misery, enlightening our
minds in the knowledge of Christ, and renewing our wills, he does persuade and
enable us to embrace Jesus Christ, freely offered to us in the gospel.
do they that are effectually called partake of in this life?
- They that are effectually
called do in this life partake of justification, adoption, and
sanctification, and the several benefits which in this life do either
accompany or flow from them.
- Justification is an act of
GodÍs free grace, wherein he pardons all our sins, and accepts us as
righteous in His sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us,
and received by faith alone.
- Adoption is an act of GodÍs
free grace, whereby we are received into the number, and have a right to all
the privileges, of the sons of God.
- Sanctification is the work of
GodÍs free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image
of God, and are enabled more and more to die unto sin, and live unto
36.What are the
benefits which in this life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption,
- The benefits which in this
life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption, and sanctification,
are, assurance of GodÍs love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost,
increase of grace, and perseverance therein to the end.
do believers receive from Christ at death?
- The souls of believers are at
their death made perfect in holiness, and do immediately pass into glory;
and their bodies, being still united in Christ, do rest in their graves,
till the resurrection.
do believers receive from Christ at the resurrection?
- At the resurrection,
believers, being raised up in glory, shall be openly acknowledged and
acquitted in the day of judgment, and made perfectly blessed in the full
enjoying of God to all eternity.
39.What is the
duty which God requires of man?
- The duty which God requires
of man, is obedience to his revealed will.
40.What did God at
first reveal to man for the rule of his obedience?
- The rule which God at first
revealed to man for his obedience, was the moral law.
Grade Questions 41-62
is the moral law summarily comprehended?
The moral law is summarily
comprehended in the Ten Commandments.
42.What is the sum
of the Ten Commandments?
- The sum of the Ten
Commandments is, to love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our
soul, with all our strength, and with all our mind; and our neighbor as
43.What is the
preface to the Ten Commandments?
- The preface to the ten
commandments is in these words, I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of
, out of the house of bondage.
44.What does the
preface to the Ten Commandments teach us?
- The preface to the Ten
Commandments teaches us, that because God is the Lord, and our God, and
Redeemer, therefore we are bound to keep all his commandments.
45.Which is the
- The first commandment is, You shall have no other gods before Me.
required in the first commandment?
- The first commandment
requires us to know and acknowledge God to be the only true God, and our
God; and to worship and glorify him accordingly.
forbidden in the first commandment?
The first commandment forbids the
denying, or not worshiping and glorifying, the true God as God, and our God; and
the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone.
48.What are we
specially taught by these words before me in the first commandment?
- These words before me
in the first commandment teach us, that God, who see all things, takes
notice of, and is much displeased with, the sin of having any other God.
49.Which is the
- You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of
anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that
is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve
them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of
the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who
hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My
required in the second commandment?
- The second commandment
requires the receiving, observing, and keeping pure and entire, all such
religious worship and ordinances as God has appointed in his Word.
is forbidden in the second commandment?
- The second commandment
forbids the worshiping of God by images, or any other way not appointed in
52.What are the
reasons annexed to the second commandment?
- The reasons annexed to the
second commandment are, GodÍs sovereignty over us, his propriety in us,
and the zeal he has to his own worship.
53.Which is the
- The third commandment is, You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the
LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
required in the third commandment?
- The third commandment
requires the holy and reverent use of GodÍs names, titles, attributes,
ordinances, Word, and works.
forbidden in the third commandment?
- The third commandment forbids
all profaning or abusing of anything whereby God makes himself known.
56.What is the
reason annexed to the third commandment?
The reason annexed to the third
commandment is, that however the breakers of this commandment may escape
punishment from men, yet the Lord our God will not suffer them to escape his
57.Which is the
fourth commandment is, Remember the Sabbath
day, to keep it holy. Six days
you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of
the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your
daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle,
nor your stranger who is within your gates.
For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and
all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed
the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
required in the fourth commandment?
- The fourth commandment
requires the keeping holy to God such set times as he has appointed in his
Word; expressly one whole day in seven, to be a holy Sabbath to himself.
59.Which day of
the seven has God appointed to be the weekly Sabbath?
- From the beginning of the
world to the resurrection of Christ, God appointed the seventh day of the
week to be the weekly Sabbath; and the first day of the week ever since, to
continue to the end of the world, which is the Christian Sabbath.
60.How is the
Sabbath to be sanctified?
- The Sabbath is to be
sanctified by a holy resting all that day, even from such worldly
employments and recreations as are lawful on other days; and spending the
whole time in the public and private exercises of GodÍs worship, except so
much as is to be taken up in the works of necessity and mercy.
is forbidden in the fourth commandment?
- The fourth commandment
forbids the omission, or careless performance, of the duties required, and
the profaning the day by idleness, or doing that which is in itself sinful,
or by unnecessary thoughts, words, or works, about our worldly employments
62.What are the
reasons annexed to the fourth commandment?
- The reasons annexed to the
fourth commandment are, GodÍs allowing us six days of the week for our own
employments, his challenging a special propriety in the seventh, his own
example, and his blessing the Sabbath day.
Grade Questions 63-87
63.Which is the
- The fifth commandment is, Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon
the land which the LORD your God is giving you.
required in the fifth commandment?
- The fifth commandment
requires the preserving the honor, and performing the duties, belonging to
everyone in their several places and relations, as superiors, inferiors, or
forbidden in the fifth commandment?
- The fifth commandment forbids
the neglecting of, or doing anything against, the honor and duty which
belongs to everyone in their several places and relations.
66.What is the
reason annexed to the fifth commandment?
- The reason annexed to the
fifth commandment is, a promise of long life and prosperity (as far as it
shall serve for GodÍs glory and their own good) to all such as keep this
67.Which is the
- The sixth commandment is, You shall not murder.
required in the sixth commandment?
- The sixth commandment
requires all lawful endeavors to preserve our own life, and the life of
forbidden in the sixth commandment?
- The sixth commandment forbids
the taking away of our own life, or the life of our neighbor, unjustly, or
whatsoever tends thereunto.
70.Which is the
- The seventh commandment is, You shall not commit adultery.
is required in the seventh commandment?
- The seventh commandment
requires the preservation of our own and our neighborÍs chastity, in
heart, speech, and behavior.
forbidden in the seventh commandment?
- The seventh commandment
forbids all unchaste thoughts, words, and actions.
73.Which is the
- The eighth commandment is, You shall not steal.
required in the eighth commandment?
- The eighth commandment
requires the lawful procuring and furthering the wealth and outward estate
of ourselves and others.
forbidden in the eighth commandment?
- The eighth commandment
forbids whatsoever does, or may, unjustly hinder our own, or our
neighborÍs wealth or outward estate.
76.Which is the
- The ninth commandment is, You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
required in the ninth commandment?
The ninth commandment requires the
maintaining and promoting of truth between man and man, and of our own and our
neighborÍs good name, especially in witness-bearing.
forbidden in the ninth commandment?
- The ninth commandment forbids
whatsoever is prejudicial to truth, or injurious to our own, or our
neighborÍs, good name.
79.Which is the
- The tenth commandment is, You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your
neighbor's wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox,
nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor's.
required in the tenth commandment?
- The tenth commandment
requires full contentment with our own condition, with a right and
charitable frame of spirit toward our neighbor, and all that is his.
is forbidden in the tenth commandment?
- The tenth commandment forbids
all discontentment with our own estate, envying or grieving at the good of
our neighbor, and all inordinate motions and affections to anything that is
82.Is any man able
perfectly to keep the commandments of God?
- No mere man, since the fall,
is able in this life perfectly to keep the commandments of God, but does
daily break them in thought, word, and deed.
transgressions of the law equally heinous?
- Some sins in themselves, and
by reason of several aggravations, are more heinous in the sight of God than
84.What does every
- Every sin deserves GodÍs
wrath and curse, both in this life, and that which is to come.
85.What does God
require of us, that we may escape his wrath and curse, due to us for sin?
- To escape the wrath and curse
of God, due to us for sin, God requires of us faith in Jesus Christ,
repentance unto life, with the diligent use of all the outward means whereby
Christ communicates to us the benefits of redemption.
86.What is faith
in Jesus Christ?
- Faith in Jesus Christ is a
saving grace, whereby we receive and rest upon him alone for salvation, as
he is offered to us in the gospel.
87.What is repentance unto life?
unto life is a saving grace, whereby a sinner, out of a true sense of his
sin, and apprehension of the mercy of God in Christ, does, with grief and
hatred of his sin, turn from it unto God, with full purpose of, and endeavor
after, new obedience.
Grade Questions 88-107
88.What are the
outward and ordinary means whereby Christ communicates to us the benefits of
The outward and ordinary means
whereby Christ communicates to us the benefits of redemption are, his
ordinances, especially the Word, sacraments, and prayer; all which are made
effectual to the elect for salvation.
89.How is the Word
made effectual to salvation?
- The Spirit of God makes the
reading, but especially the preaching, of the Word, an effectual means of
convincing and converting sinners, and of building them up in holiness and
comfort, through faith, unto salvation.
90.How is the Word
to be read and heard, that it may become effectual to salvation?
- That the Word may become
effectual to salvation, we must attend thereunto with diligence,
preparation, and prayer; receive it with faith and love, lay it up in our
hearts, and practice it in our lives.
do the sacraments become effectual means of salvation?
- The sacraments become
effectual means of salvation, not from any virtue in them, or in him that
does administer them; but only by the blessing of Christ, and the working of
his Spirit in them that by faith receive them.
92.What is a
- A sacrament is a holy
ordinance instituted by Christ; wherein, by sensible signs, Christ, and the
benefits of the new covenant, are represented, sealed, and applied to
93.Which are the
sacraments of the New Testament?
- The sacraments of the New
Testament are, baptism, and the LordÍs Supper.
- Baptism is a sacrament,
wherein the washing with water in the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Ghost, does signify and seal our ingrafting into Christ, and
partaking of the benefits of the covenant of grace, and our engagement to be
95.To whom is
Baptism to be administered?
- Baptism is not to be
administered to any that are out of the visible church, till they profess
their faith in Christ, and obedience to him; but the infants of such as are
members of the visible church are to be baptized.
96.What is the
- The LordÍs Supper is a
sacrament, wherein, by giving and receiving bread and wine, according to
ChristÍs appointment, his death is showed forth; and the worthy receivers
are, not after a corporal and carnal manner, but by faith, made partakers of
his body and blood, with all his benefits, to their spiritual nourishment,
and growth in grace.
required for the worthy receiving of the LordÍs Supper?
- It is required of them that
would worthily partake of the LordÍs Supper, that they examine themselves
of their knowledge to discern the LordÍs body, of their faith to feed upon
him, of their repentance, love, and new obedience; lest, coming unworthily,
they eat and drink judgment to themselves.
98.What is prayer?
- Prayer is an offering up of
our desires unto God, for things agreeable to his will, in the name of
Christ, with confession of our sins, and thankful acknowledgment of his
99.What rule has
God given for our direction in prayer?
- The whole Word of God is of
use to direct us in prayer; but the special rule of direction is that form
of prayer which Christ taught his disciples, commonly called the LordÍs
What does the preface of the
LordÍs Prayer teach us?
- The preface of the LordÍs
Prayer, which is, Our Father in heaven,
teaches us to draw near to God with all holy reverence and confidence, as
children to a father, able and ready to help us; and that we should pray
with and for others.
What do we pray for in the first
- In the first petition, which
is, Hallowed be Your name, we pray
that God would enable us, and others, to glorify him in all that whereby he
makes himself known; and that he would dispose all things to his own glory.
What do we pray for in the second
- In the second petition, which
is, Your kingdom come, we pray that SatanÍs kingdom may be
destroyed; and that the kingdom of grace may be advanced, ourselves and
others brought into it, and kept in it; and that the kingdom of glory may be
What do we pray for in the third
- In the third petition, which
is, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven, we pray that God,
by his grace, would make us able and willing to know, obey, and submit to
his will in all things, as the angels do in heaven.
What do we pray for in the fourth
- In the fourth petition, which
is, Give us this day our daily bread, we pray that of GodÍs free
gift we may receive a competent portion of the good things of this life, and
enjoy his blessing with them.
What do we pray for in the fifth
- In the fifth petition, which
is, And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors, we pray that
God, for ChristÍs sake, would freely pardon all our sins; which we are the
rather encouraged to ask, because by his grace we are enabled from the heart
to forgive others.
What do we pray for in the sixth
- In the sixth petition, which
is, do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one,
we pray that God would either keep us from being tempted to sin, or support
and deliver us when we are tempted.
What does the conclusion of the
LordÍs Prayer teach us?
- The conclusion of the
LordÍs Prayer, which is, For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the
glory forever. Amen, teaches us to take our
encouragement in prayer from God only, and in our prayers to praise him,
ascribing kingdom, power, and glory to him; and, in testimony of our desire,
and assurance to be heard, we say, Amen.