Duties Of Parents #1 and #2

by Richard Baxter

Ungodly parents are the greatest servants of the devil in all the world, and the bloodiest enemies to their children’s souls! More souls are damned by ungodly parents, than by all other instruments! 

1.  Understand and lament the corrupted and miserable state of your children, which they have derived from you.

2.  Train them up in exact OBEDIENCE to yourselves—and break them of their own wills. The common course of parents is to please their children so long, by letting them have what they crave, and what they desire, until their wills are so used to be fulfilled, that they cannot endure to have them denied; and so can endure no government, because they endure no crossing of their wills.

To be obedient, is to renounce their own wills, and be ruled by their parents’ wills. To allow them therefore to have their own wills, is to teach them disobedience, and harden and train them to a kind of impossibility of obeying. Tell them often and lovingly of the excellency of obedience, and how it pleases God, and what need they have of government, and how unfit they are to govern themselves, and how dangerous it is to children to have their own wills. Speak often with great disgrace of self-willedness and stubbornness—and teach them what has befallen self-willed children.


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