Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903)


Ms 201, 1903

Parents' Responsibility


circa 1903

Previously unpublished.

“Search the Scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal life and they are they which testify of me.” John 5:39. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 1

The words here mean not merely to be conversant [with] the words written. “Searching” means to become understandingly familiar with the meaning of the words. “Searching” means diligently—with an intense anxiety. It is as a command that the searcher encourages an anxious heart hunger which leads to the putting forth of intense effort to come to the reading, praying to the Lord for light and knowledge to impart an intensity of desire proportionate to the value of the object we wish to obtain, which is Christ formed within, the hope of glory. Eternal life—nothing short of this will be satisfactory. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 2

He looked upon the many that [He] longed to save and with pitiful tenderness He said, “And ye will not come unto Me that ye might have life. I receive not honor from men, but I know you that ye have not the love of God in you” (John 5:40-42). [See also] Isaiah 62:10-12; 8:9-18. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 3

Satan is constantly applying his skill and his knowledge to lead the soul into crooked paths. The self-confident, the proud and ambitious heart will constantly design to weave self in every line of work and would be the prime advisor when he greatly needs a genuine experience in that spirit of [the One] who has invited his confidence. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 4

The father and mother should begin to work humbly, devotedly, within [their] homes and educate their children bringing them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, teaching their children from their earliest years that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 5

“Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the Lord my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?” (Deut. 4:5-8.) [See also] Deut. 6:1-9, 13-25. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 6

Here is instruction plainly given to that vast multitude above one million people. This is the instruction from Jesus Christ enshrouded in the pillowy cloud, communicating His will to the one He had appointed to give instruction of the highest importance. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 7

“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul” (Psalm 19:7). The reproof is now strongly upon all those who have had the word of the Lord but held it so lightly in that they have failed to give their children the proper education in their babyhood, childhood, and youth, to ever keep before their children the instruction from the lips of the only begotten Son of God. Moses was divinely appointed in the Word, instructed by the Lord Jesus. The reason that children are not to be left careless in their associations with children [is that] they are in danger of becoming acquainted with wrong habits. The Scriptures were taught to Timothy by his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice. Of Timothy it is stated he had known the Holy Scriptures which are able to make us wise unto salvation. Children are to be kindly, patiently instructed from the Scriptures that Christ is the Way, the Truth, the Life. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 8

The subject of education from babyhood has the first claim of the mother. The education in the city homes cannot be as pleasant and favorable as the education of children in country homes among fields and trees and flowers. [See] Matt. 5:19-23. The Lord Jesus would have parents consider that the very first discipline of fathers and mothers is to be very attentive to the carrying out of the purpose of God in their home life. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 9

When the Lord was about the destroy Sodom for its great wickedness messengers from heaven were sent to make a visit to Sodom. [See] Gen. 18:1-5. This courtesy, Abraham thought, was only being given some weary travelers, but he was entertaining angels, heavenly guests. The father of the faithful had not then all the definite instruction in printed articles that we have, but the Lord had the moulding and fashioning of the mind of Abraham as a sample of that which men should be in politeness and in courtesy and benevolence. Under the teaching and moulding of the Lord the heart will be kind and attentive in doing just as Abram did. 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 10

After partaking of the refreshments as common travelers, the men—for they were to all appearance as only human beings—“rose up from thence and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way (that is, to show them the best route for their journey). And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do?” “For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment, that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him” (Genesis 18:16, 17, 19). 18LtMs, Ms 201, 1903, par. 11