1. The place of parents
Ellen White (1827-1915): “Parents stand in place of God to their children” (Second Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, 1875).
Elias Goodwin (1852): “Parents stand in the place of god to their children, until they become old enough to and serve God for themselves” (Duty of Parents to their Children).
Note: Elias Goodwin was one of the many, who out lived the dooms day forecast of Ellen White’s – “The food for worms”, failed prophecy! (Duty of Parents to their Children).
2. Children will suffer the consequences of parental neglect
Ellen White (1827-1915): “Parent I fear some of you are rearing children to be cut down by the destroying angel, unless you speedily change your course” (Second Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, October 14, 1875).
Elias Goodwin (1852): “…that you wake up to this important duty of governing your children, and subdue their wills and unholy tempers,…Unless you do, you will certainly see your children cut down in the time of trouble.” (Duty of Parents to their Children).
Ellen White: “He cannot love unruly children who manifest passion, and He cannot save them in the time of trouble” (Second Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, October 14, 1875).
3. God will hold parents responsible for their children
Ellen White (1827-1915): “…Unfaithful parents, their blood will be upon you, and is not your salvation doubtful with the blood of your children upon you?” (Second Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, October, 14, 1875).
Elias Goodwin (1852): “If this duty is neglected by the parents, it seems to me certain that God will hold them responsible, and the blood of their children will be required at their hands.” (Duty of Parents to their Children).
4. Parents are to watch the opening minds of their children
Ellen White (1827-1915): “Carefully and untiringly parents are to watch the opening minds of their children, giving them the lessons they need in order to develop into Christian men and women. Parents should make all else subordinate to the work God has given them to do for their children” (RH July 8, 1902, Art. A, par.1).
“By painstaking effort parents are to watch the opening, receptive mind and make everything in the home life secondary to the positive duty enjoined upon them by God–to train their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ah, p. 181).
Bennett James (1774-1862): “Parents, early lead your children to the public worship of God in the church… Watch for the first openings of their minds, and never hearken to the voice of the enemy, that whisper in your ear, “they are too young to be taught religion”” (Lectures on the history of Jesus Christ, Vol. 1, p. 74, 1828).
5. Idleness is sin
Ellen White (1827-1915): “I have been shown that much sin has resulted from idleness. Active hands and minds do not find time to heed every temptation which the enemy suggests, but idle hands and brains are all ready for Satan to control. The mind, when not properly occupied, dwells upon improper things. Parents should teach their children that idleness is sin. I was referred to Ezekiel 16:49” 1T, p. 395, 1868).
Ellen White: “Idleness is sin” (Youth’s Instructor, Jan 31, 1901).
J. C. Ryle (1816-1900): “Idleness made Sodom what she was. “This was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her” (Ezek. 16:49)…Verily, I believe that idleness has led to more sin than almost any other habit that could be named. I suspect it is the mother of many a work of the flesh… You were idle, and at once the devil knocked at the door and came in… But if you love them well, let idleness be counted a sin in your family”” (The Upper Room: The Duties of parents, 1887).
Herman Melville (1819-1891): “”Toil is man’s allotment; toil of brain, or toil of hands, or a grief that’s more than either, the grief and sin of idleness” (Mardi: and a Voyage Thither, Chap. 63, p. 225, 1849).
Samuel Butler (1835-1902): “Work with some men is as besetting a sin as idleness.”
Hannah more (1745-1833): “Idleness among children, as among men, is the root of all evil.”
6. Train up a child in the way he should go
Ellen White (1827-1915): “Solomon did not say, “Tell a child the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” But, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (RH June 24, 1890).
“If the vines are not trained about some proper support, they waste their energies to no purpose. So it is with children. Their activities must be trained in the right direction” (ST, August 13, 1896).
John Cumming (1807-1881): “It is perfectly true, – “train up a child in the way he should go;” not, as some people very foolishly read it, “in the way he would go.” “Train up a child;” not only teach, it is of no use to teach if you do not train. If you tell a vine to grow up a pole before training it, it would not do so. You must train it, and help it onwards on its way. And so it is with a child; you must not only tell him to do this, but you must put him in the way of doing it” (Sabbath Evening Readings on the New Testament: St. John, pp. 7, 8, 1856).
7. Family worship
Ellen White (1827-1915): “The service should be short. When a long chapter is read and a long prayer offered, the service is made wearisome, and at its close a sense of relief is felt… Fathers and mothers, make the hour of worship intensely interesting. There is no reason why this hour should not be the most pleasant and enjoyable of the day. A little thought given to preparation for it will enable you to make it full of interest and profit. From time to time let the service be varied. Questions may be asked on the portion of Scripture read, and a few earnest, timely remarks may be made. A song of praise may be sung. The prayer offered should be short and pointed. In simple, earnest words let the one who leads in prayer praise God for His goodness and ask Him for help. As circumstances permit, let the children join in the reading and the prayer” (7T, p. 43, 1902).
J. R. Miller (1840-1912): “The manner in which the family worship is conducted is very important. It should made so pleasant as to be looked forward even by the young children. Too often it is made tedious, monotonous, or burdensome. Men fall into a stereotyped order which they never vary. Long passages are read, and the prayers offered are not only long, but are the same every day…There is no reason, why the family worship should not be the most delightful exercise in the home-life. It should be the continued study of heads of households to make it bright, interesting and profitable… A part in the service should be given to each child. Questions may be asked on the passage read the day before… one practical thought at least may be selected from the Scripture which will bear upon the day’s life, Cheerful songs may be sung. Then in prayer some part should be given to the little ones” (Week-Day Religion, pp. 79-80, 1880).
8. Religion is love
Ellen White (1827-1915): “Religion is love, and a Christian home is one where love reigns and finds expression in words and acts of thoughtful kindness and gentle courtesy” (AH, p. 94, 1952).
J. R. Miller (1840-1912): “Religion is love, and a religious home is on in which love reigns. There must be love in action, love that flows out in all the home intercourse, showing itself in thousand little expressions of thoughtfulness, kindness, usefulness and gentle courtesy” (Week-Day Religion, p. 81, 1880).