Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Ms 136, 1898

Fragments on Religion in the Home


October 20, 1898

This manuscript is published in entirety in 1NL 92.

God judges a man by what he is in his family. Abraham is called the father of the faithful. “I know him,” said the Searcher of hearts, “that he will command his children and his household after him, to keep the way of the Lord to do justice and judgment.” [Genesis 18:19.] The Lord chose Abraham as a representative man, because He knew that he would cultivate home religion, that he would cause the fear of the Lord to circulate through his tent. There would be no betrayal of sacred trust on Abraham’s part. He would acknowledge and keep God’s law. Blind affection and indulgence, which is the veriest cruelty, would not be shown by him. By the combined influence of authority and affection he would rule his house. Mercy and justice were blended in his rule. 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 1


“Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” [Galatians 6:7.] Parents, your work is to win the confidence of your children, and in love patiently sow the precious seed. Do your work with contentment, never complaining of the hardship, care, and toil. If by patient, kindly, Christlike efforts, you may present one soul perfect in Christ Jesus, your life will not have been in vain. Keep your own soul hopeful and patient. Let no discouragement be traced in your features or attitude. You have in your hands the making of a character, through the help of God, that may work in the Master’s vineyard and win many souls to Jesus. 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 2

Ever encourage your children to reach a high standard in all their habits and tendencies. Be patient with their imperfections, as God is patient with you in your imperfections, bearing with you, watching over you, that you may bring forth fruit unto His glory. Encourage your children to strive to add to their attainments the virtues they lack. Let no cheap, frivolous conversation be indulged. 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 3

Take your Bible and read to your children the words of the inspired apostle, “Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded, in all things showing thyself a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.” [Titus 2:6-8.] “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance. But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation, because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” [1 Peter 1:13-16.] 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 4

There is need of guarding the conversation, that the words shall be pure, chaste, elevated. If parents would strictly guard their words, they would, by precept and example, teach their children to be select in their words. 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 5

The home may be a school where the children are indeed fashioned in character after the similitude of a palace. No coarseness or roughness is to be indulged, for it is entirely contrary to heaven’s custom. 13LtMs, Ms 136, 1898, par. 6