Notebook Leaflets from the Elmshaven Library, vol. 1


Effects of Misrule

But if the parents are severe and exacting in their discipline, they do a work which they themselves can never undo. By their arbitrary course of action they stir up a sense of injustice. Many parents have to meet in their children their own temper and disposition. But instead of ruling with wisdom and kindness, they are harsh and exacting. They do not make the religious life attractive, and the children say, “If this is religion, we want none of it.” Enmity against the rules of God is created. The rebellious spirit which refused to render obedience to parental authority is the last to yield to divine authority. Thus, by misrule, parents fix the eternal destiny of their children. By mismanagement they drive them to the enemy's ranks, to serve the prince of darkness rather than the Prince of light. 1NL 94.7

Such parents will have a fearful account to settle with God. In the great day of judgment He will ask them, “What have you done with My heritage? Where are the children I entrusted to your care?” Then with terrible distinctness the parents will see that their neglect has not only proved the ruin of their children, but of themselves, and that the wrong traits of character they cherished have been transmitted from parent to child to the third and fourth generation. The seeds which have been sown have produced a harvest they will not care to garner. The course of action which confirmed the children in irreligious practices has reacted upon themselves, making their influence a curse instead of a blessing. 1NL 95.1