The Review and Herald


October 12, 1911

A Godly Example in the Home


The Lord has recently impressed upon me again the need of reminding Seventh-day Adventist parents of the important work to be done in the home. To all parents who profess to believe in the soon return of Christ, there is given a solemn work of preparation, that they and their children may be ready to meet the Lord at his coming. God desires to see parents take their position whole-heartedly for him, that there may be no perverting of the work he has given them to do, and that our children and youth may understand clearly the will of God concerning them. They are to learn to resist evil and choose righteousness, to turn from sin and become the faithful servants of God, prepared to give him their life's highest service. RH October 12, 1911, par. 1

There are few parents who realize how important it is to give to their children the influence of a godly example. Yet this is far more potent than precept. No other means is so effective in training them in right lines. The children and youth must have a true copy in right-doing if they succeed in overcoming sin and perfecting a Christian character. This copy they should find in the lives of their parents. If they enter the city of God, and rejoice in the overcomer's reward, some one must show them the way. By living before their children godly, consistent lives, parents may make the work before them clear and plain. RH October 12, 1911, par. 2

It is God's desire that parents should be to their children the embodiment of the principles laid down in his Word. Let them make it their aim to train their children for God. To keep the feet of their children in the narrow path will call for faithful effort and constant prayer, but it is possible to train the children and youth to love and serve God. It is possible to inculcate the principles of righteousness, line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, and there a little, until the desires and inclinations of the heart are in harmony with the mind and will of God. When fathers and mothers realize the responsibility resting upon them, and respond to the appeals of God's Spirit in behalf of this neglected work, there will be seen in the homes of the people transformations that will cause the angels to rejoice. RH October 12, 1911, par. 3

Let parents study the first chapter of the second epistle of Peter. Here is represented the exalted excellence of Bible truth. It teaches that the Christian's experience is to be one of steady growth, of constant gain in graces and virtues that will give strength to the character and fit the soul for eternal life. RH October 12, 1911, par. 4

“Grace and peace be multiplied unto you,” the apostle writes, “through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, according as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. RH October 12, 1911, par. 5

“And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and can not see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” RH October 12, 1911, par. 6

It is the privilege of parents and children to grow together in the grace of Christ. Those who comply with the conditions laid down in the Word will find full provision for their spiritual needs, and for power to overcome. Feeling the need of that grace which Heaven alone can furnish, and which Christ imparts to all who seek, they will become partakers of the heavenly gift. RH October 12, 1911, par. 7

Those who have accepted Bible truth are to keep the truth circumspectly. They are to follow on to know the Lord, gathering into their souls the light of heaven. But they must not stop there. They are to communicate the light and knowledge received. The Lord expects parents to make earnest, united efforts in the training of their children for him. In the home they are to cultivate the graces of the Spirit, in all their ways acknowledging him who through the sanctification of the Spirit has promised to make us perfect in every good work. When parents awaken to a true understanding of their neglected duties, they will marvel at the spiritual blindness that has characterized their past experience. And when they become learners of Christ, they will be taught how to do their work acceptably. RH October 12, 1911, par. 8

There has been too little definite work done in preparing our children for the tests that all must meet in their contact with the world and its influences. They have not been helped as they should to form characters strong enough to resist temptation and stand firm for the principles of right, in the terrible issues before all who remain faithful to the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. RH October 12, 1911, par. 9

Parents need to understand the temptations that the youth must daily meet, that they may teach them how to overcome them. There are influences in the school and in the world that parents need to guard against. God wants us to turn our eyes from the vanities and pleasures and ambitions of the world, and set them on the glorious and immortal reward of those who run with patience the race set before them in the gospel. He wants us to educate our children to avoid the influences that would draw them away from Christ. The Lord is soon coming, and we must prepare for this solemn event. My brethren and sisters, let your daily life in the home reveal the living principles of the Word of God. Heavenly agencies will cooperate with you as you seek to reach the standard of perfection, and as you seek to teach your children how to conform their lives to the principles of righteousness. Christ and heavenly agencies are waiting to quicken your spiritual sensibilities, to renew your activities, and to teach you of the deep things of God. RH October 12, 1911, par. 10

Parents should be united in their faith, that they may be united in their efforts to bring their children up in the belief of the truth. Upon the mother in a special sense rests the work of molding the minds of the young children. But the father should feel more deeply than he usually does his responsibilities in the home. Upon him as well as upon the mother rests the duty of laboring for the spiritual welfare of his children. Business matters often keep the father much from home, and prevent him from taking an equal share in the training of the children; but whenever he can, he should unite with the mother in this work. Let parents work unitedly, instilling into their children's hearts the principles of righteousness. RH October 12, 1911, par. 11

The vows of David recorded in Psalm 101 should be the vows of all upon whom rest the responsibilities of guarding the influences of the home. David declared: “I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way.... I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave unto me. A froward heart shall depart from me: I will not know a wicked person. RH October 12, 1911, par. 12

“Whoso privily slandereth his neighbor, him will I cut off: him that hath a high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight.” RH October 12, 1911, par. 13

Home missionary work is a most important work. It should be our first work to give that light to those related to us by the ties of kinship and blood. There should be no neglect on our part to do our utmost to bring them to an understanding of the knowledge we have received. “If any man provide not for his own,” the apostle Paul declared, “and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” RH October 12, 1911, par. 14

Shall the people who have a solemn message to bear for the enlightenment and salvation of the world, make little or no effort for the members of their own family who are unconverted to the truth? Will parents allow their minds to be engrossed with trifling matters, to the neglect of the all-important question, “Is my family prepared to meet the Lord?” Will they assent to the great truths that are present truth for these last days, and be interested to see this message going to other peoples and lands, while they allow their children, their most precious possession, to go on unwarned of their danger and unprepared for the future? Shall those who, from the Word of God and through the witness of his Spirit, have had clear light concerning their duty allow the years to pass without making definite efforts to save their children? RH October 12, 1911, par. 15

Christ is waiting for the cooperation of human agencies, that he may impress the hearts of our children and youth. With intense desire heavenly beings long to see parents making that preparation which is essential if they and their children stand loyal to God in the coming conflict, and enter in through the gates to the city of God. Let parents arouse from their indifference, and redeem the time. Let them seek to correct the mistakes they have made in the past in the management of their children. Let those who have neglected their God-given work repent of their neglect, and in the fear of God take up their responsibilities. As they seek to magnify the law of God in the daily life, they will make that law honorable in the eyes of their children. RH October 12, 1911, par. 16