Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Love your children?

My wife and I were reading (soon finishing) Jonathan Edwards Bio by Iain Murray. Well at one part it reveals a letter Edwards wrote to his 9yr-old son who was away at the time; This letter is great encouragement, i pray it is a timely rebuke as well if such thoughts are not commonly yours toward your own children.
Stockbridge, May 27, 1755
Dear Child:
Though you are a great way off from us, yet you are not out of our minds: I am full of concern for you, often think of you, and often pray for you. Though you are at so great a distance from us, and from your all your relations, yet this is a comfort to us, that the same God that is here as also at Onohoquaha and that though you are out of our sight, and out of our reach, you are always in God's hands, who is infinitely gracious; and we can go to Him, and commit you to His care and mercy. Take heed that you don't forget or neglect Him. Always set God before your eyes, and live in His fear, and seek Him every day with all diligence: for He, and He only can make you happy or miserable as He pleases; and your Life and Health, and the eternal salvation of your soul and your all in this life and that which is to come depends on His will and pleasure.
The week before last, on Thursday, David died; whom you knew and used to play with, and who used to live at our house. His soul is gone into the eternal world. Whether he was prepared for death, we don't know. This is a loud call of God to you to prepare for death. You see that they that are young die, as well as those that are old; David was not very much older than you. Remember what Christ said, that you must be born again, or you never can see the Kingdom of God. Never give yourself any rest unless you have good evidence that you are converted and become a new creature.
We hope that God will preserve your life and health, and return you to Stockbridge again in safety; but always remember that life is uncertain; you know not how soon you must die, and therefore had need to be always ready. We have very lately heard from your brothers and sisters at Northhampton and at Newark, that they are well. Your aged grandfather and grandmother, when I was at Windsor gave their love to you. We here all do the same.
I am, your tender and affectionate father,Jonathan Edwards

This should be common language used between families: here Edwards clearly shows his son, that above all else his SOUL's condition is the most important. Now that's biblical love, biblical concern. He doesn't sound like some 'cool wanna-be your buddy' type of dad, the type that seems to permeate our culture, rather a shepherd who's concern is also at home.


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