Posted by: chuckbumgardner | January 23, 2008

Cotton Mather’s “A Father’s Resolutions”

  
An email I recently received from a certain ministry highlighted Cotton Mather’s essay “A Father’s Resolutions.”  I had not read that piece before, but found it to be well worth reading.
  
A few excepts:
I will continually magnify the matter to [my children], what a brave thing ’tis to know the things that are excellent; and more brave to do the things that are virtuous.
When the children are of a fit age for it, I will sometimes closet them; have them with me alone; talk with them about the state of their souls; their experiences, their proficiencies, their temptations; obtain their declared consent unto every jot and tittle of the gospel; and then pray with them, and weep unto the Lord for His grace, to be bestowed upon them, and make them witnesses of the agony with which I am travailing to see the image of Christ formed in them.
I will be very watchful and cautious about the companions of my children. I will be very inquisitive what company they keep; if they are in hazard of being ensnared by any vicious company, I will earnestly pull them out of it, as brands out of the burning. I will find out, and procure, laudable companions for them.
As soon as ever I can, I will make my children apprehensive of the main end for which they are to live; that so they may as soon as may be, begin to live; and their youth not be nothing but vanity. I will show them, that their main end must be, to, acknowledge the great God, and His glorious Christ; and bring others to acknowledge Him: and that they are never wise nor well, but when they are doing so.
    
You can find the entire text here.
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