J.C. Ryle: Parents, consider the souls of your children

Posted: July 17, 2009 by limabean03 in Anglican Communion, Christian Theology, Christianity, Discipleship, Puritan Faith, Reformed Theology, Sanctification

J.C. Ryle was the great evangelical Bishop of Liverpool and is one of Iain’s favorite preachers/ theologians. The following is from Ryle’s Duties of Parents. Read it all here

Precious, no doubt, are these little ones in your eyes; but if you love them, think often of their souls. No interest should weigh with you so much as their eternal interests. No part of them should be so dear to you as that part which will never die. The world, with all its glory, shall pass away; the hills shall melt; the heavens shall be wrapped together as a scroll; the sun shall cease to shine. But the spirit which dwells in those little creatures, whom you love so well, shall outlive them all, and whether in happiness or misery (to speak as a man) will depend on you.

This is the thought that should be uppermost on your mind in all you do for your children. In every step you take about them, in every plan, and scheme, and arrangement that concerns them, do not leave out that mighty question, “How will this affect their souls?”

Soul love is the soul of all love. To pet and pamper and indulge your child, as if this world was all he had to look to, and this life the only season for happiness— to do this is not true love, but cruelty. It is treating him like some beast of the earth, which has but one world to look to, and nothing after death. It is hiding from him that grand truth, which he ought to be made to learn from his very infancy,.—that the chief end of his life is the salvation of his soul.

A true Christian must be no slave to fashion, if he would train his child for heaven. He must not be content to do things merely because they are the custom of the world; to teach them and instruct them in certain ways, merely because it is usual; to allow them to read books of a questionable sort, merely because everybody else reads them; to let them form habits of a doubtful tendency, merely because they are the habits of the day. He must train with an eye to his children’s souls. He must not be ashamed to hear his training called singular and strange. What if it is? The time is short,—the fashion of this world passes away. He that has trained his children for heaven, rather than for earth,—for God, rather than for man, —- he is the parent that will be called wise at last.

Comments
  1. Allison says:

    I love this-

  2. Erik says:

    Rob,

    Solid quote by J.C. Ryle. I thought you and your readers might enjoy some more Christ-centered, gospel-saturated quotes from my relatively new site, J.C. Ryle Quotes.

    http://jcrylequotes.com/

    Be encouraged and strengthened by these God-centered quotes by John Charles Ryle, penned over a hundred years ago. I trust Ryle will continue to point you to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ through his writings.

    Though he be dead, he yet speaks.

    Keep up the insightful posts/links.

    Soli Deo Gloria!
    To God Alone Be the Glory!

    ~ Erik

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