WHAT was your first step in wrong-doing?" inquired a State-prison chaplain of a young man who was in agony of mind because of his imprisonment. 

Mark his reply, boys! 

"Sir," said he, "my first step to ruin was wading in the brook and fishing on the Sabbath. I knew it was wrong. My mother taught me better; the minister taught me better; my teacher taught me better. Yet I would do it; but I did not think that it would come to this."

Boys, stick a pin in this fact. When that boy willfully did a wrong deed, which he knew to be wrong, he entered the path of the criminal. In this case, fishing on the Sabbath was the evil deed. Had it been stealing, swearing, going into bad company, or lying, the result would have been the same. Choosing to do a bad deed, knowing it to be bad, is the fatal step into the road to ruin! Do you understand? 

Then beware how you take that step. Like him, you may be unable to see the ruin at the end of the path, but it is there, nevertheless. Beware, then, of that fatal first step!

 S. S. Advocate.