Scott, Walter 1838-1933
33 Gary Hamel St., Hull, UK
About the Wonderful Book, a small, 80 page book printed around 1920.
I never read fiction as, to me, it has no substantial value. In addition, because my time is limited that I need to forgo what is good and invest my limited time in what is best.
With that thinking in mind, I picked up this wonderful little book in England. The author, Walter Scott, expounds about God’s Word, The Wonderful Book.
The last page and a half in the book has a heading “Reading and Study.” From which I quote the following:
“Character is to a great extent formed by the books we read and the persons with whom we keep company. The artificial culture of the day is destroying depth and force of character. A frivolous society and a light literature are forming a superficial race of men and women. The present is a rare opportunity for the individual character to assert itself and leave its mark. Multifarious reading, and reading to while away time hanging heavily on your hands, are ruinous to the mind. Thoughts are poured in and run out, leaving no lasting impression–what a waste of time and mind! As to choice of books, no fixed rule can be applied. History is always instructive. Science is dangerous when it is the product of unsanctified minds. Novels, works of fiction, tales and semi-infidel books should never be read by Christians. You cannot read novels and the Bible. Religious novels we abominate. Never read valueless books. Shun, as you would the plague, a literature frivolous in character, or, worse still, one which directly or covertly denies the plenary inspiration of, and consequently the supreme authority of, the Sacred Scriptures.
A vile and pernicious literature is wrecking the morals of the country. Noble men and women, and a pure-minded people, were more general in the past that now. Mind and character are formed by the literature of the day. But above all make the Bible your daily companion. The Bible will grow in interest the more you read and study it. It is the sufficiency of the man of God. Have the Bible constantly beside you, in your pocket, or at hand for constant reference. Draw your doctrines from it, and not from a human compilation, whether catechism or confession. The Bible will strengthen and guide you. It will support and cheer you. It will impress certainty upon your life and actions. As you study the Book of books it will enable you to worship in the holiest, and serve in the harvest field intelligently. It will set you head and shoulders morally above your peers. We would strongly advise a systematic study of the Bible. Writing short studies of Scripture is a great help to progress and exactness of thought. A good concordance is invaluable.