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tion suggest the obligation of watching over their helpless years, and of training them up in the nurture and admonition of God. There are also certain duties due from the children to the parents, for the faithful performance of which there is not only provision made in the filial affections; but in maturer years, the claims of justice powerfully plead for their fulfilment. To them they are indebted for the preservation and protection of their lives during the years of helplessness and childhood ;—to them, and especially to one of them, they owe the growth and gradual development of the kindlier sympathies of their nature ;-to them they are obliged for the elements of that education by which they are preparing, or have been already prepared, for usefulness and happiness in society ;and to them, above all, is due their gratitude, if they instructed them in the fear of God, and ceased not, by their exertions and their prayers, to point out the way to everlasting happiness. Hence the terms in which the authoritative injunction of revelation is enforced;
Children, obey your parents in the Lord; for this is right. Honour thy father and mother, that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest live long on the earth.”
The natural affections, as well as the Scriptures, establish the duty of parents to maintain their children,
If any provide not for his own, especially for those of his own household, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel * "
They are also, for the same reasons, bound to give them such a training or education, as may fit them for
* 1 Tim. y. 8.
passing comfortably and creditably through the sequel of life. If they are to acquire subsistence by manual labour, they ought betimes to be inured to restraint, and to be provided with regular employment. If they are to depend on the exercise of their talents in a profession, it is criminal in the parents to withhold, from avarice, the means of procuring that knowledge, and those accomplishments, that will fit them for entering on its duties with a fair prospect of success. Nor are they less blameable, should they allow them to consume that time in foolish amusements, which should be devoted to studies necessary to their future honour and usefulness.
It may be more difficult to ascertain the extent to which parents are bound to make pecuniary provision for the future wants of their children. It is clear that this ought not to be prosecuted at the expense of the claims of justice, and of charity, reasonably proportioned to our income. It has been remarked by all who have been much conversant with the world, that with regard to sons especially, a good education, and virtuous and industrious habits, give them a far better chance of this world's happiness, than the possession of a large capital at the outset of their course. And with regard to the superior enjoyment of acquiring a fortune, above to the getting of it already provided by others, there can be no question.
The duty of parents making provision for the virtue of their children is of a still higher order. This cannot be done effectually without the union of example with precept. Should the child make the discovery that the parent in his admonitions is only acting a
part,mand he will sooner or later make the discovery when such is actually the case,-he will receive his admonitions as he would “hear the same maxims from the mouth of a player.
And when once this opinion has taken possession of the child's mind, it has a fatal effect upon the parents' influence in all subjects ; even those, in which he himself may be sincere and convinced. Whereas a silent, but observable regard to the duties of religion, in the parent's own behaviour, will take a sure and gradual hold of the child's disposition, much beyond formal reproofs and chidings, which being generally prompted by some present provocation, discover more of anger than of principle, and are always received with a temporary alienation and disgust *.”
ON MASTERS AND SERVANTS.
The mutual relation of masters and servants also gives rise to certain duties of justice. Both parties enter into stipulations, and both are laid under obligations. Those who serve enter into engagements with their employers, which they are bound with readiness and submission to fulfil. They are exposed to temptations peculiar to their station,-a culpable negligence in the business they have undertaken, dishonesty in
See the Chapter on the Duties of Parents and Children in Personal and Family Religion.
purloining their master's property, or a disrespectful conduct towards him; and it requires a deep sense of religion to maintain an undeviating consistency amid these and many other allurements to what is wrong. But the virtue of resisting and overcoming such temptations, in proportion to the difficulty of its acquirement and exercise, will be approved and rewarded by Him who looks with the same impartial eye on all his creatures, and who will judge every man according to his works. The victory won in such a situation by a truly christian servant over the evil feelings of envy and discontent, is far greater in the estimation of Him who weigheth the spirits, than that of those whose moral trial is less severe, and who are less assailed by incentives to sin. Christian servants are required to be faithful in the discharge of their engagements, not so much from the consideration that their neglect or violation may be punished as a breach of justice, as from the higher motives of the fear of God, and the authority of Christ. “ Servants,” says the Apostle Paul, “ be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, in singleness of heart, as unto Christ ; not with eye-service as men-pleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart'; with good will doing service, as to the Lord and not to men; knowing that whatsoever good thing a man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free."
Masters, also, have duties to perform to their servants, which, by the laws of justice, they are bound to discharge. There are temptations to neglect their
fulfilment, at least, to neglect their uniform and complete fulfilment. From the power over others which is given and assumed, will there not be an inducement to ask more from them than they can reasonably perform ; to bear towards them an unfeeling demeanour, to disregard with unchristian apathy their moral and religious wants? Are not masters sometimes in danger of placing before their servants, by their example and otherwise, temptations to a neglect of duty, to dishonesty, and to the indulgence of a disrespectful conduct towards their superiors ? “ They,” it has been remarked, “ are capable of enjoyment, like ourselves; and there are many enjoyments of which we may legally deprive them, by the constraints to which they have submitted themselves, according to the common usage of such personal contracts--but which are not incompatible with the fulfilment of all their duties to us; and which it would therefore, morally, be as wrong to prevent, as it would be to prevent a similar amount of enjoyment, when the power of preventing it was not legally ours. He who, to the utmost of his power, converts the freedom of domestic service into slavery–who allows no liberty-no recreation, no pleasure, which he can interdict, has all the guilt of a tyrannical master of a slave; or rather, has a guilt that exceeds the guilt of such oppression, because it is an oppression that is exercised in a land of freedom. Every indulgence, therefore, which does not interfere with the domestic duties, and which does not tend to vitiate the character, is a duty which the master owes. “ Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal ; knowing that ye also have a